Kviven, June 19 2023

Back again, 12 years later…

Back at Kvivsdalssætra


Date Peak Height PF Location WCP/FP MAP
19.06.23 Kviven 1023m 160m Volda, Norway MAP

Monday: The hike to Eidskyrkja on Sunday really inspired me to revisit tops I hadn’t been to for several years. After work this Monday, I decided to hike Kviven – a mountain I hiked with Anne back in 2011. It was overdue for a revisit.

Our route up and down Kviven

I remembered four things from the 2011 hike; we headed out from Kvivsdalssætra, we hiked both Kviven and Gjugra, there was still a lot of snow on the mountain, and I think we descended Kviven’s north ridge. The rest of the hike was pretty much a “void”, and I looked forward to getting back up in this terrain – and hopefully remember more. Of course, I could have looked up the 2011 hike in my picture archive before going back, but I didn’t.

I took the toll road to Kvivsdalssætra and noted that Karma and I were – except for the local sheep – pretty much alone up here.

At Kvivsdalssætra

I started out by doing a mistake. The signpost for the trail pointed towards the sheep and high grass, while there was a tractor road on the other side of the gate (which could not be opened). I assumed the signpost pointed the wrong way and hauled the dog across the gate. It didn’t. At the end of the field, I had to haul the dog across the fence to get onto the mountain path.

On the wrong side of the fence

Once on the path, it was all good. The path climbed gently towards “Stegen”.

Strolling up the forest

That said, some of the small bridges could probably do with a 2.0 overhaul…

You’re brave!

At Stegen – where multiple rivers and creeks merged into one, it was not possible to get across without getting the wet feet. I took the shoes off and put a leash on the dog. The current was quite strong, but not strong enough to cause any difficulties.

River crossing

When we got to lake Kvivsvatnet, I was happy that I had brought the ice-axe. The snow fields going into the lake was just steep enough to allow for an accidental slip.

Along lake Kvivsvatnet

When the valley leading up to the Gjugra – Kviven ridge opened up in front of us, it seemed like an easy plod on snow. Almost too easy, and so I started to look for ways to make it harder…

Nah – too easy…

It was steep up to our right, but it seemed doable. In worst case, if we were stopped by anything – slabs or whatever – we could just continue on that elevation up the valley.

Going off-trail

The off-trail route wasn’t difficult, but it required a little bit of route-finding.

Interesting terrain ahead…

At least if we were to head down this way. Which we probably would…

Trying to remember the route…

Then we got on the high ridge, and I looked forward to getting to the top. But this ridge was longer than I remembered it to be.

On the ridge

We had a good view towards Grodås, and I did consider going down there and take a taxi through the tunnel and back to the trailhead. This could take some time, though and I wanted to get back home before midnight. Dinner is best enjoyed the day it was planned…

Grodås (Hornindal)

Even the ridge had some obstacles in store for us. The biggest one was easily solved by sticking to the left, but I did have to make a note of the details to avoid losing too much time upon our return.


When I thought we had reached the top, we hadn’t. The summit was still 0,5km to the SW. Oh well…

The mountain plateau – view towards Gjugra

No problem, though. We were both happy to be up here…

Happy dog, happy photographer…

But eventually, we reached the high point.

What? Have I forgotten anything?

I still didn’t remember anything more from our 2011 hike, and now I was really curious and couldn’t wait to get back home and check the picture archives.

I didn’t fancy going off-trail on the north ridge. It was not because of the ridge itself, but the inevitable river crossing near Kvivsdalssætra. So, we took the same route down as we came up.

Eidskyrkja massif

When I got back home, I immediately pulled up the 2011 GPS track and could see that at Stegen, we had gone off-trail straight up to Gjugra. From Gjugra, we followed the ridge to Høgenibba and then to Kviven before heading down Kviven’s north ridge. And, we had the ford the river back then. There was way more water in the river today, so I think it was a good call to return along our ascent route.

Returning to Kvivsdalssætra

This was a bit “over the top” with respect to an “afternoon hike”. We started out 17:10 and were back at the trailhead 20:49. With 1 hour of driving back home, dinner happened on the same day and we were in bed well before midnight…

Trip statistics: 10,8km, 780 vertical meters, 3h:38m
Pictures (Canon EOS RP/Iphone 13 Pro Max) from the hike:

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