2020 Week 1

Rough weather on its way

Incoming hail showers in Hareidsdalen on Hareidslandet island

Peaks visited:

Peak Height PF Location WCP
Stedjeåsen 624m 121m Sogndal, Norway WCP
Svarstadveten 591m 38m Stryn, Norway WCP
Hogden 601m 168m Stryn, Norway WCP
Huldrehornet 271m 113m Herøy, M&R, Norway WCP
Hovdenakken 474m 176m Hareid, Norway WCP
Ramnefjellet 444m 76m Hareid, Norway WCP
Laupsnipa 558m 380m Herøy, M&R, Norway WCP

Continued from our Christmas breakat Hov in Søndre Land…

Stedjeåsen (624m), Dec 31 2019

Our route up and down Stedjeåsen

Tuesday: We were on our way from Hov to Sogndal and once we had passed Filefjell, we stopped in Lærdalsdalen to let Karma stretch her legs. She might have gotten car-sick, because she ate enough grass to impress a cow! I hoped that she would cough it back up right away, but she didn’t. So I drove the remaining distance to the ferry, very aware of any sounds from the dog cage.

Karma, eating grass while Anne is stretching

When we arrived at Sogndal, Karma had still not vomited and I decided to take her on a walk up to Stedjeåsen.

I was dead tired after the long drive and it was raining. My only motivation was for Karma to get rid of all that grass.

Not much snow left at the foot of the mountain

The hike got more enjoyable when darkness came and we could walk on snow. By the time we reached the top, Karma showed no signs of being unwell and I concluded that the next time she had to do her business, she would leave a small haystack behind…

On Stedjeåsen

I had no time to waste. We were going at a New Year Eve party later in the evening and I had to get back to Anne’s house.

Heading down from Stedjeåsen

Trip statistics: 5,9km, 550 vertical meters, 1h:35m

New Year Eve Party, Dec 31 2019

Tuesday evening: After hiking Stedjeåsen, taking a shower and got all dressed up, we drove to Gaupne to celebrate the last day of the year together with our friends Anne May and Jan. The younger generation were also present; Marianne and Kjetil and Kjetil’s girlfriend Lene.

Very nice to spend the last evening of 2019 with good friends

Kjetil and Lene had prepared a vegetarian dinner which was applauded by all of us. I skipped a game of Settlers which they just finished before the year was over and we got ready to check out the fireworks.

It begins…

That is – I spent most of the time in the bathroom with Karma – who sadly – has become quite uneasy with the fireworks.

Poor little girl…

A good hiking and skiing year was now over. I got my new 100 pf100 tops, which is my annual goal. I didn’t reach 200,000 vertical meters, which I did in 2013 through 2018, mostly because of the long sail to Jan Mayen; 9 sailing days + 2 traveling days. I ended up on 185,975 vertical meters which is OK. I did 2137km on foot, 528km on skis and 50km on bike (as part of mountain trips), altogether 2715km – which is a quite normal year. I visited  197 different mountain tops , 402 counting revisits. I avoided injuries, but did much less running than I’ve done previously. I might just be getting older.

In any case, it was nice to end the year with my girlfriend and good friends and I look forward to a new “season” – starting the next day..

2019 is dead. Long live 2020!

Svarstadveten (591m), Hogden (601m), Jan 1 2020

Our round trip hike

Wednesday: Today, I returned home to Sunnmøre after being away since Dec 22. I looked forward to get back home, but wanted to do a hike first. The start of the year wouldn’t feel good if I skipped the hike on the very first day.

It was raining, and my motivation wasn’t very high. But then it helps to think about a new route and when I passed Stryn, I decided to hike Svarstadveten and Hogden from Hol. I’ve been to these tops twice before, but never from Hol.

Heading out from Hol

The start of the hike was quite nice. I followed various tractor roads upwards until we reached the road to Vinsryggsætra.

A nice and easy start to the hike

From the road, I was not able to find the forest path to Svarstadveten and headed off-trail into the forest and soon ran into snow. The ascent up the forest was strenuous.

The hike is not quit so easy anymore…

Eventually, we reached Svarstadveten. Karma seemed very happy about the snow and forest.

Passing Svarstadveten

From Svarstadveten, I had a clear view towards Hogden – a 1,3km walk. I decided to follow the sticks as much as I could, as they would probably mark the easiest route between the tops. The snow was quite deep at times.

On our way to Hogden

By the time we reached Hogden, I was pretty fed up with the rain and the snow and now darkness was on its way. I just wanted to get off the mountain!

On Hogden
Svarstadveten seen from Hogden

I started out in the right direction, but lost sight of the markers and had chose to hike straight down the forest. It was less steep than I had feared and eventually we reached Vinsryggsætra.

It’s getting dark, but the snow helps a lot!

I wanted to do a complete round trip hike and followed the ski-track northbound until we reached the power line. We then followed the power line until we were back on the tractor road we started out from. It turned out to be a much more cumbersome walk than I had imagined it to be, but it was still a nice start to the new year.

Trip statistics: 8,4km, 665 vertical meters, 2h:20m

Huldrehornet (271m), Jan 3 2020

Our hike across Huldrehornet

Friday: Two negative things happened the day before (Thursday). First, I woke up not feeling well at all and secondly, a storm hit the coastline. I was so happy when the ferry had taken me across the fjord, after working day in Ålesund. It was a bumpy ride.

Today, nothing had changed except perhaps the weather, which was more violent than the day before. I hardly slept all night due to the beating that the house took. On Friday afternoon, I watched through my window – hail showers in lighting speed. Most of the express boat routes along the coastline was cancelled. Even the ferry was cancelled for a little while.

House view

Fatigued as I was, I still felt I needed to walk the dog. So, we did a round trip hike across my local mountain Huldrehornet. I took a number of pictures that I felt would document the hostile weather, only to later discover that I had no card in the camera! But take my word for it – it was pretty rugged on top of this low mountain. It felt totally OK to get off it!

Trip statistics: 5km, 335 vertical meters, 1h:21m

Hovdenakken (474m), Ramnefjellet (444m), Jan 4 2020

Our route across Hovdenakken and Ramnefjellet

Saturday: I was absolutely dead meat in the morning. I wasn’t what I would call sick, more like having the flu before it kicks in hard. But – without having the flu! I was so fatigued, but could not sleep as my body was so stressed. Perhaps it’s just the body trying to fight some virus. In the end, I decided that a walk couldn’t hurt – as long as I didn’t push myself.

I drove to the golf course in Hareidsdalen to hike Hovdenakken.


The weather was much better than the day before, although there were some pretty hefty hail showers passing by now and then. As such, Hovdenakken was a perfect hike as I had the forest (as shelter) nearly all the way to the top.

Up the forest

One hail shower came upon us while we still were in the forest, so no harm done. We reached the top and I started to think what we should do next.

On top of Hovdenakken

The strong wind and showers seemed to come from the north/northwest. Which meant that we could descend on the south side and stay in shelter from the worst weather. Hence, I decided to hike to Ramnefjellet and then return to the main road via the forest.

On our way to Ramnefjellet – the hump straight ahead

The forest hike was enjoyable. The fresh snow was nice to walk on. We also met 4 deer which Karma really wanted to chase. But I said NO and she obeyed. But not without making sounds…

Sorry, NO! You can’t run after those animals!

When we got home, I was totally exhausted and slept non-stop from 4pm to 7pm. Afterwards, I felt much better.

Trip statistics: 7,4km, 560 vertical meters, 2h:03m

Pictures (Canon EOS RP/Iphone8) from the hike:

Laupsnipa (558m), Jan 5 2020

Our route up and down Laupsnipa

Sunday: Sunday morning was just like Saturday morning. I woke up after sleeping (on and off) for 7 hours and my body was in total distress. What the heck is going on? Fortunately, the weather was AWFUL. It was pouring down and just taking the dog for a morning walk around the block felt utterly miserable. For both of us. Back inside, I decided to chill on the sofa and enjoy Tour de Ski.

In the afternoon, as it was getting dark, the rain seemed to cease. Which, according to the forecast, it should. I then decided to hike Laupsnipa. Karma was utterly bored from doing nothing all day and didn’t care that it was still raining (some) and that the tractor road at Voldnes was soaking wet and muddy. She was just happy to be out!

Laupsnipa ahead. It’s getting really dark. Headlamp came on at the trailhead

The Voldneselva river posed a small challenge. I’ve never seen so much water in what is normally just a creek. But, I soon found places where we could cross safely. I mean, there would have not been any drama if I fell into it, and probably not the dog either. But, the water was moving very fast, and so I didn’t want to see Karma in it.

About to cross the river

As we got higher, the weather got worse. It was raining much more on the mountain than at sea level.

Near the top, we ran into fog which made it really difficult to orientate with the headlamp on. But as Karma knows this route quite well, I just followed her.

I might have had plans about a round trip hike, but that was out of the question now. It was difficult just to orientate in familiar terrain. Besides, we were soaking wet and hungry. Time to head back down!

Karma on Laupsnipa

The river crossing went like a charm…

Nothing to it…

Back down on the tractor road, a reflex pair scared the living daylights out of me. Again! I always forget about them…

I don’t scare easily, but get a small shock everytime I’m here in the dark…

The first week in 2020 didn’t quite turn out as I hoped. Not only did I get unwell, we also had our fair share of rain, snow, hail and strong winds. And the next week doesn’t look any more promising either. “The low pressures are lined up“, as the weather man just said. We have a saying in Norway – “there’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothes“. With that in mind, we’ll just have to dress up and face the music…

Trip statistics: 5,2km, 570 vertical meters, 1h:30m

Leave a Reply