Slow start, great finish!
|Rjåhornet||598m||105m||Herøy, M&R, Norway||WCP|
|Sollia||661m||661m||Herøy/Sande, M&R, Norway||WCP|
Rjåhornet (598m), Sep 3 2018
Monday: Monday’s is Rjåhornet day. Well not always…
Today, I decided to jog up the mountain. Unfortunately my running shape is nothing like it should be, and I had to switch to fast walking halfway up the final 400 vertical meters hill.
I reached the top in 33:45m, which was horrendously bad, compared to where I wanted to be (around 30m). But OK. Better luck next time…
Trip statistics: 5,9km, 570 vertical meters, 1h:12m
Garnestua (653m), Sep 4 2018
Tuesday: Today I decided to hike Garnestua, fast from Haddal. This route is way too steep and brutal for running the whole way – in the shape I am in these days. But I can still hike fast.
I like this route and Karma likes it even more. She goes nuts when she realizes that we’re *here*. I don’t know why. Perhaps she saw a hare 4 years ago, and still remember it.
We reached the top in 34m:57s, which was OK. Just like on Rjåhornet the day before, we had fog on top . So no big reason to hang around.
Upon descent, we went over to Flåna, then down to lake Garnesvatnet before I sat course towards my ascent route.
Trip statistics: 7,2km, 680 vertical meters, 1h:20m
Sollia (661m), Sep 5 2018
Wednesday: I was still in trying to build my running form and decided to run Sollia from Leikongsætra. It’s always satisfying to be able to run all of the the 5,5km to the top. Regardless of the total time spent…
Today, we (Karma and I) did it in 46m:52s, which was roughly 3 minutes slower than what I did in 2016. It will be interesting to see if 2018 was just a bad running year or if age really matters…
We got fog for the 3rd day in a row. Grrr…
As a variation to the route, I took the new route on the other side of Holmevatnet and joined my ascent route further down. It was a nice run and a nice hike, regardless of the weather.
Trip statistics: 12,9km 630 vertical meters, 1h:55m
Sukkertoppen (314), Sep 6 2018
Thursday: For this day, I had invited my closest colleagues to hike up “Trollråsa” on the “back side” of Sukkertoppen. It is a route I developed shortly after moving to Ålesund in 2006. I was appalled about the fact that no one had done this earlier. It didn’t take long before the word about the route got around, and people started coming. Now, 12 years later, the route is regarded as quite a normal route on this mountain. I am not the kind of person that takes much *pride* in things, but I am quite happy about having made this amazing route popular…
Enough boast and back to my colleagues; none of them had ever done a hike like this before, and I was really, really nervous about the whole thing. It’s not a difficult route, but you have to use your hands here and there and there are places where you should most definitely not fall! My fear was naturally that someone had a bad day and got serious or fatally injured.
The team consisted of Thomas, Fredrik, Wouter (our boss, or “baas” as he’s Dutch) and Srinivas. The agreement was that we would meet by Hessa Stadion at 5pm. That gave me time to walk Karma first, as I didn’t want to take her up Trollråsa. So, we hiked up and down the normal route before I drove to Hessa Stadion and parked the car in the shade. I prepared a backpack with some harnesses, a short rope and some gear in case anyone got really uncomfortable.
I think I’ve boasted enough already, but I couldn’t resist; while waiting for the others, I chatted with a woman passing by. She saw my gear and wondered what I was up to. I explained the purpose and I asked if she was heading for Trollråsa. “No”, because there’s a new route in town…
Ah, now I remembered hearing about the “Via Ferrata” like route that popped up some years ago. We chatted some more, and when I eventually told them that I had developed Trollråsa and explained the story behind the name. She then asked me about my name. When I told her, she kinda … screamed … in a civil manner. Apparently, my former site westcoastpeaks.com has been extensively used by a number of people over the years, her included. She told me she had always wondered how I looked like and she seemed “over the moon” to meet me. That’s definitely the first, and most likely my last 15 minutes of fame…
The others arrived pretty much on time and we headed out..
Already in the first (and easy) hillside, it was clear to see that the non-Norwegians found this route quite … cumbersome. I seriously wondered how this would progress..
Eventually, we reached the mailbox (I bought it in 2006 and yes, it was still around). We stopped here for a little while, just to take in the views and to prepare them for what was next.
Next up was a scramble with a bad outcome if you slip. I knew I was a pest (it couldn’t be helped) and made sure each and every one picked the best handhold and move. I also couldn’t help but notice that Fredrik moved like he had done this all his life (and he had never done this before). Thomas mentioned something about “some of the strangest things he’s ever done”, but didn’t seem to have any problem at all. Srinivas and Wouter had a more serious look on their face, but scrambled in an impeccable way.
So far, I could have brought my dog, but the final hurdle – the crux – was still to come. This section wasn’t half as bad in 2006, but after years of tear and wear it’s now a real scramble. I decided to minimize the total risk and showed Fredrik an alternative route – much more airy, but much easier. Then I asked him to take Wouter that way while I oversaw Srinivas and Thomas scramble up the harder section. Once everyone was up, safe and sound, I could finally breathe again…
There are a couple of fun points on the way to the top, including the-rock-with-the-hole-under. Sadly, only Fredrik took the challenge to climb through.
The other fun point – a type of obelisk rock – I encouraged them to skip. A fall here would not be good at all. Besides, it had started to rain some and the rock was slippery.
And finally – we reached the top.
We took the normal route down. It didn’t go quite as fast as I wished, but you can’t rush people who do their best. But eventually we reached the Hessa School trailhead, where we had another car parked. I still had a long way home back to Gurskøy, but knowing everything went well and they all seemed to have a great time, the trip home went like a blast…
Trip 1 statistics: 4,1km, 325 vertical meters, 1h:08m
Trip 2 statistics: 3,4km, 300 vertical meters, 2 hours
Pictures from the first hike:
Pictures from the Trollråsa hike:
Sandhornet (909m) , Sep 7 2018
Friday: Now that the weather had turned to the better, I wanted to end the work week on a good note and drove to Ørsta to hike Sandhornet from Mosætra.
I have been to Sandhornet several times, both in summer and winter, but never visited the mountain from this side. Which means I had never been to Rambjørhornet (815m) either.
Karma and I followed a nice path up to the mountain.
I enjoyed reaching Rambjørhornet, as there’s nothing like getting to a place I’ve never been before. The views were of course first class, even if we hadn’t reached the main top yet.
After hiking across the unnamed top 816m, we ascended the final hill towards Sandhornet.
The views weren’t too bad there either…
If there is the slightest chance of a round trip hike, I’ll take it. Which wasn’t easy to do along this route, but in the pass between Sandhornet and 816m, I left the path and hiked (somewhat steep) off-trail towards a gorge.
We crossed the gorge and rejoined our ascent route minutes later. All in all, a great hike!
Trip statistics: 6km, 660 vertical meters, 1h:53m
Pictures from the hike:
Fingeren (1188m), Sep 8 2018
Saturday: I invited my colleague Fredrik to this superb scramble in the Sunnmøre Alps. If you want to read the trip report, you’ll find it here. If you just want to check the video, then choose HD and click play…
Bergehornet (1024m), Sep 9 2018
Sunday: A nice revisit to the Vartdal peaks. I hadn’t been to Bergehornet in 12 years, so it was high time. If you want to read the trip report, you’ll find it here