No longer in the mountains, but still skiing…

On the way to Framstadsæterfjellet, Gran


Date Peak Height PF Location WCP/FP MAP
05.04.23 Åltjern 887m Lillehammer, Norway MAP
06.04.23 Balbergkampen 671m 140m Lillehammer, Norway MAP
07.04.23 Storkaldingen 507m Søndre Land, Norway MAP
07.04.23 Framstadsæterfjellet 793m 120m Gran, Norway MAP
08.04.23 Sjåheimen 610m 57m Søndre Land, Norway FP MAP
08.04.23 Kaperalen 698m 105m Gran, Norway MAP
09.04.23 Salen 1588m 288m Lærdal, Norway MAP

Åltjern, Apr 5 2023

Our ski-trip from Åltjern

Wednesday: Easter part 1 – Skeikampen – was history and we were now relocating basecamp in the Gausdal region. My good friend Petter Bjørstad (check out his list of ascents – mind-boggling!) had invited us to spend the night at their cabin at Åltjern, before we had to move on for Easter part 2 – Randsfjorden.

Heading for Petter’s cabin

No one was at the cabin when we got there (after a short ski-trip). So, then Anne and I went on a ski-trip too and it didn’t take long before we met Heidi and Petter, returning to their cabin.

We’re going on a short ski-trip

But now that we had skis on, we wanted to do a forest lap and Petter decided to join us. On the way, we also met Pål Jørgen (one of their sons) returning from a longer lap.

On skis with Petter – again…

Petter (72) is 13 years older than me, but I have to focus hard on my technique to keep up with him.

Petter and Anne – having a talk…

After the travel from Skei in the morning and a nice 10,5km lap on skis, it was nice to relax in the cabin. It was nice to be back here – 13 years after our previous (and first) visit.

Time to set course for the cabin

We enjoyed a delightful dinner, nice red wine and good company in the evening. Petter and I have been friends since the late 90’s and we went on many trips together. I was a rookie in the mountains and Petter was already a very experienced mountaineer back then. I learned a lot from him and had the privilege to come along on memorable trips to Greenland, Rocky Mountains, Svalbard and Jan Mayen. My mountain resume would have been significantly thinner if I hadn’t met Petter…

Calling it a day…

Trip statistics: 11,2km (incl. trip to the cabin), 155 vertical meters, 1h:50m

Balbergkampen (671m), Apr 6 2023

Our hike across Balbergkampen, Lillehammer

Thursday: After saying goodbye to Heidi and Petter after breakfast, we continued to Lillehammer where we wanted to hike Balbergkampen. At least, we *hoped* we could hike, trusting the good citizens of Lillehammer had kept the trails open during the winter. This mountain is a bit too steep to enjoy skiing on regular skis.

On our way to Balbergkampen

We drove up to Balbergskaret and found parking there. And sure enough, it looked absolutely possible to hike this mountain on foot!

At Balbergskaret

And soon after, we were on our way on our first hike on foot since March 25.

Balbergkampen, here we come!

The path was excellent, and we were not alone in the forest.

Make way…

I just love being able to get a new pf100 top on a day designated to traveling.

The upper part of Balbergkampen ahead

There is a local saying that goes something like: “I don’t care where I am as long as I can see Mjøsa”. And indeed, we could see Mjøsa – Norway’s largest lake – from the top of Balbergkampen.

On top of Balbergkampen

We headed down the same route for a little while, before turning right towards “Masta”. From this route, we had an excellent view towards Lillehammer.

Lillehammer. Lilyhammer is also OK 😉

Then we followed the “Masta” path back to the trailhead.

Returning to the trailhead

It was a very nice walk! Afterwards, we stopped by Anne’s friend Liv Jorunn in Lillehammer.

Looking back on Balbergkampen

After that short visit, we drove to our good friends Eva & Bjørn in Hov by Randsfjorden. This would be our last basecamp this Easter and we looked forward to see our friends again.

Trip statistics: 2,8km, 270 vertical meters, 0h:47m

Storkaldingen, Apr 7 2023

Our route from Storkaldingen

Friday: Together with Eva & Bjørn, we decided to go to Veståsen for cross-country skiing. As far as we could understand, there was prepared tracks up there.

From Hov, we crossed Fluberg Bru and followed a mountain road (toll) up to lake Storkaldingen (507m). We found tracks there, but only a small loop. Weird…

The shortest prepared track – ever!

It turned out that there was an annual Easter event up there and that the short loop was prepared for that purpose. But the organizers had also prepared a 7km loop that we decided to follow.

Heading out for our 7km round

There wasn’t any top or high point along this route, so I had to convince myself that it’s OK to just ski around in the forest…

Skiing in the Veståsen forest

In any case, it was nice to be out skiing! For sure!

The weather was just awesome this Easter…

We were not very far from Store Skjellingshovde and it was too bad that the tracks didn’t go that far.

In the outskirts of Skjellingshovde

Before the trip, I was worried that the snow would be too soft for Karma, but she was overall doing OK.

The mileage you’ve had in your 10,5 years…

Back at the starting point, the place was “packed”. We were well received as guests and were treated coffee and hot dogs. Very nice!

Enjoying the company of complete strangers…

Trip statistics: 7,7km, 130 vertical meters, 1h:48m

Framstadsæterfjellet (793m), Apr 7 2023

My route up and down Framstadsæterfjellet

Friday: After the trip to Veståsen, I decided to take a solo trip. I drove to Gran to ski Framstadsæterfjellet from Nordre Ålsbygda. I knew this trailhead from my hike to Hvalebykampen during Easter 2017.


That is, this time I could drive a little longer – down to Storljuget.

My trailhead for this trip

I skied the road until I found the summer path to Framstadsætra.

Going up the forest

Once out of the shadow, everything was honky dory fine.

Enjoying myself…

By the time I passed Framstadsætra, the snow was getting very soft, and I wondered how fun the descent would be – on narrow skis that I had recently purchased (hence – didn’t know too well)

Passing Framstadsætra

I’d worry about that on my way down. Now I looked forward to reaching the top. I was glad I had tracks ahead of my, so I didn’t have to waste time navigating. I presumed the top would take me to the top, which they did.

Following tracks through the forest

On top, I met I guy who presented himself as Yngve. Don’t get me wrong – I totally believe that was his real name! It was not his tracks I had been following, as he came up from another direction. But he decided to join me on my way down – the same way I came up.

On Framstadsæterfjellet. Photo by Yngve

He was skiing on skating skis and was not able to keep up with me. I had already waited for him several times when he suggested that I should just move along. I had a fun and wild ride down the forest. It was in general better to just aim between the trees and hope for the best, rather than trying to control the speed.

Heading down…

This had been another great day outdoors and I had a most enjoyable drive along Randsfjorden back to Hov.

Driving along Randsfjorden

Trip statistics: 5,5km, 360 vertical meters, 1h:17m

Sjåheimen (610m), Apr 8 2023

Our route across Sjåheimen

Saturday: Like the day before, we went on a ski-trip with Eva & Bjørn. But today, we didn’t go far. We drove up to the Flyplassen parking (it’s not an airport…) a few km up the road and headed out from there.

At Flyplassen

The tracks were perfect, and Eva said she couldn’t remember such good conditions, at this time of spring.

Can’t ask for better tracks

The others were skiing on regular cross-country skis, but I had my skating skis on. Recently glided. I was flying!

Finally, the uphills take a pause

And when we came to a meadow that carried my weight (off the track), I had a ball…

Damn! This is fun!

As I was “flying”, Karma and I got to Skihytta on Sjåheimen a little ahead of the others.

At “Skihytta” on Sjåheimen

Then Anne came…


And finally, Eva and Bjørn.


Next up was coffee and waffles

Life is good…

Waffles for everyone

Tell me, Karma. Do you feel lucky?

This was nice, but now my mind started thinking about the possibility of getting a new top between getting back to Hov and before Easter dinner. In that case, we’d better had to leave soon…

My mind is drifting…

Eventually, I got the others going and we took a different route back to the parking. It was a really fun ski-trip! Man, the skis were fast!

Leaving Sjåheimen

Trip statistics: 12,5km, 200 vertical meters, 2h:01m

Kaperalen (698m), Apr 8 2023

My route up and down Kaperalen

Saturday: We were back at the house at 1:30pm, after the ski-trip to Sjåheimen. With dinner at 6pm, I figured I had time to drive to Gran and Nordre Ålsbygda to ski Kaperalen. I was sort of on the clock here but shouldn’t have any problems.

I got a little stressed where I got to a traffic accident just before Brandbu. Fortunately, I was able to get onto the Bleiken road and drive around Brandbukampen. I got to the Ålsbygda parking slightly after plan, hoping the persons in the accident were OK…

I hadn’t studied the map very much, just memorized the general direction. From the parking, I followed snowshoe tracks and as I saw a “Brandåsen” signpost (the top next to Kaperalen), I hoped the tracks would take me in the right direction.

Heading out from the Ålsbygda trailhead

They didn’t. Instead, they led me in the direction of Svartbråtåberget, which was on the wrong side of the valley I knew I had to cross.

Looking back. Hvalebykampen to the right

Once I took a closer look at the map and formed a strategy, I really felt I was on the clock. But, I tried to enjoy myself. After all, it was nice to ski around in this forest.

Looking for a place to descend into the valley below

Eventually, Kaperalen came into view and it looked far away!

I got a glimpse of my destination

After a not-so-fun descent, I finally got on the forest road that I really should have followed from the beginning.

After 1,6km along the road, I reached the Kaperalen foothills and wondered where the heck should I go?


Being on the clock, I took the steepest route I was willing to climb, without considering the descent.

I’ll regret this…

Finally, I got to the top area, but where was the high point? It was not clear at all, and I had ski back and forth just to be 100% sure I had covered it all, wherever the high point would turn out to be.

Some views could be found on Kaperalen

The time was now 3:45pm. 2h:15 until dinner – with hopefully a shower on beforehand.

Announcing a new pf100 top “in the bag”

I followed my tracks down the forest and the skiing was “hairy” at times. I wasn’t on skating skis, but my new CC skis weren’t much wider.

When I got down to the forest road, I decided to follow it all the way until I met the road to Storljuget, that I drove the day before.

From there, I was able to ski alongside the road, back to the trailhead. The time was now 4:45pm, and now I had all the time in the world. The drive back to Hov would only take 30-40 minutes.

Along Randsfjorden – again

After a shower, I could join the others for the traditional Easter turkey

Happy Easter and thanks for good friends!

We would head back to Sogndal the next day, but we made sure to enjoy this beautiful afternoon until its end…

Thanks for another enjoyable stay at Skjeskroken!

Trip statistics: 10,7km, 360 vertical meters, 3h:12m

Salen (1588m), Apr 9 2023

On our way to Salen

Sunday: This trip is featured on a separate post...

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