A strenuous and fun round-trip hike!
Saturday: I don’t see a lot of mountains from my backyard, but I do see Velsvikskåla above Rovdefjorden. Aka Vedeldskåla. A mountain Anne and I skied back in 2010. From Løndalen.
Since then, I’ve been thinking about hiking on the side facing me. For instance, a complete round-trip around the “bowl”. Norwegian mountains named “Skåla” typically have a very distinct “bowl”.
And today I decided to make the trip. The weather wasn’t the best and it was raining when we took the ferry from Årvika to Koparneset. It would probably have made more sense to drive to Volda and take the Lauvstad ferry. But that ferry doesn’t run very often, while the Årvika – Koparneset runs every 30 minutes. It’s been a while since I drove past Syvden anyway, so it was an easy decision.
I had been at Høystøylen once before – in 2011 when I skied Koppefjellet and Høystøylfjellet. This time I didn’t take the road to Høystøylen but followed the gravel road marked “Velsviksætra”. This road quickly got too rough for my taste, and I parked near the river.
We followed the gravel road up to the point where the Tuva ridge begun. The terrain was cumbersome. Bush, turfs and altogether WET.
But little, by little, Tuva got closer. This is not a peak per se, but with a primary factor of 59m, it’s interesting to me. So, I was quite happy when we finally reached the top.
We were seemingly in the outskirts of the rain showers. I could feel some raindrops every now and then, but not enough to put on more clothes. Bonus!
After a – yes – 59m descent, we took on the remaining 400 vertical meters to the top of Skåla.
While Tuva belongs to Vanylven, Skåla belongs to Volda. We were now hiking along the Vanylven/Volda border. Sundneshornet (907m) belongs to both municipalities, and I’m not quite sure why I didn’t bother to swing by the top. Probably because of the primary factor – only 13m.
Karma was having a mighty good time on this mountain. I’m not sure what got her so triggered. Probably the scent of deer further down and grouse higher up.
We crossed a rocky ridge called Blånipa (977m) before aiming straight for the top.
And then we were up!
It was quite windy up there and I hoped that we didn’t get to feel the rain showers that seemed to be stuck around Syvdsfjorden. The combination of wind and rain would not be pleasant. I figured we should not stretch our luck, so after a round of pictures we sat course for Nottegga – the northeast ridge.
I wasn’t 100% sure that we would be able to get down along this ridge. It looked quite steep seen from the trailhead, but at the same time – not impossible. It was just hard to say from that far away. But then I noticed that there was a vague track, and where would that track take us – if not down?
It was a steep drop to our right and I made sure Karma didn’t get some crazy ideas along the way…
We lost sight of the track, but the descent was super-easy and soon we were on a broader ridge – on our way to Halsen and Herdakollen.
I was thinking – if I were to do this round-trip again, would I still be ascending via Tuva or along this ridge? The conclusion was easy. I would do the exact same round-trip hike.
It was a bit unclear what was best to do when we were off the mountain and down by the river. There was a large field on the other side of the river, and it felt tempting to go there. We immediately found a good place to cross the river, and once on the other side – we found a tractor road that we followed all the way back to the car. Another bonus!
I enjoyed getting back to the car, thinking about the warm shower once back home. It had been a strenuous, but very fun hike! If you’re not afraid of stepping outside the paths, consider it!
Trip statistics: 8,7km, 960 vertical meters, 2h:57m
Pictures (Canon EOS RP/Iphone 13 Pro Max)