It is World Ocean Day today. I have selected two very old pictures for the occasion. Both are from the Lofoten islands in the north of Norway. One is from 1974, the other from 1983. These are old color slides that I have digitalized. Click the picture to see a larger version.
After a coffee and a delicious waffle at Smuksjøseter we were set for the last part of our hike. We would be following the gravel road back to our “base” at Høvringen. Not as good as hiking in the terrain, but great anyway. A minibus passed us a couple of times with passengers who had had enough of walking for the day, but else there was no traffic. Back at Høvringen we had a shower and a rest, and a lovely dinner to end a perfect day.
Not far from the Peer Gynt hut we have a magnificent view of the north side of the mountain range “Smiubelgjen”. The name means “the blacksmith’s bellows”. I am filled with gratitude towards the people who worked hard in the 1950’s and -60’s to make this area a national park.
The path between the Peer Gynt hut and Smuksjøseter is well-used, and it follows the valley floor and is easy to walk. The name Smuksjøseter can be translated to something like “a mountain dairy farm situated by a beautiful lake”. It is not used as a dairy farm anymore, it has like many of the old mountain farms been transformed to a place where tourists can stay while enjoying hiking in this beautiful area. (I should also add that they make the most wonderful waffles here, crisp and warm with strawberry jam and sour cream. I should have taken a picture of it, but then it was already gone..)
Tuesday is our big day, we have planned to hike from Høvringen to the Peer Gynt hut. That means we will be walking 20 kilometers, most of it inside Rondane national park. We enjoy a delicious breakfast at our base and prepare some food and coffee to carry in our backpacks for a meal at the hut when we get there. Luckily we have a little chat with the hostess at Høvringen Fjellstue before we start. She knows the area well, and suggests a round trip which will give us some fine views of the wonderful scenery. We follow her advice, which turns out to be very good.
The weather is still fine, with glimpses of sun and blue sky and almost no wind, and we quickly find the footpath to follow. It is easy going, slowly ascending from around 1000 up to 1180 meters at the highest. We are passing the foot of the mountain Formokampen, which is another popular destination because of its great view, but today its peak at 1428 meters is covered by low clouds.
After a couple of hours we can see down into the valley where our destination lies. To the north, we can see the lake Høvringvatn, with Smuksjøseter at its eastern shore, and to the south we can see the smaller and rounder lake Søndre Høvringsvatn, with the Peer Gynt hut a little south of its southern end. We descend into the valley at around 1000 meters, and have a good rest and a meal at the hut.
After crossing Valdresflya we arrived at the small town Vågåmo in the Gudbrandsdalen valley. We had a short stop in Vågåmo before we continued to Sel and from there we drove up the steep and winding road to our destination, Høvringen. We would be staying at Høvringen Fjellstue, which would be our base for hiking in the Rondane national park. After having checked into our room and had a look around, we decided we had enough time for a short hike before dinner, which would be served at 6:30 pm. The weather was incredibly nice, we read 16 degrees celsius and almost no wind at all. So we ended up at a small mountain top called Haukberget, about 3 kilometers from our “base”. Here are some pictures, hope you enjoy.
After a quick meal and a coffee at Beitostølen, we continued north across Valdresflya. We were going slowly, with frequent stops to enjoy the weather, the fresh air, and the beautiful scenery. The road is 1389 meters above sea level at its highest point. It is about 90 kilometers from Beitostølen across to Vågåmo in the beautiful Gudbrandsdalen valley.
Last Monday my wife and I left home at 7:45 in the morning. We drove north for a couple of hours, and arrived at Beitostølen, where we had a stop. As the cafe didn’t open until 10 am, we did a little sightseeing and photographing while waiting. At Beitostølen the morning fog was thick, but only a couple of kilometers further up, the sun was shining. It was also surprisingly warm and still for the season, at 1000 meters above sea level.
Between Dragsvik and Hella there is a 10 minutes ferry crossing the Sognefjorden. It’s good to take a break and stretch the legs before the journey continues.
Going over Gaularfjell mountain last week to visit my wife’s family.
The designer behind this creature really did a magnificent job.
From Ree Safaripark near Ebeltoft, Denmark.