Norway 2010

I had the fortune to spend 10 days in August driving and hiking around Norway’s Western Fjords.  Trips like this drive me nuts!  There is so much beautiful landscape, and not enough time to enjoy it.  Many short day trips were taken, along with two longer trips (a climb up to 1453m Geitfonnegga, and the 8-hour traverse of the Besseggen Ridge in Jotunheimen Park).  The hiking opportunities in Jotunheimen alone could fill a lifetime, not to mention the Norweigan penchant for the Allemannsretten (every man’s law), that allows unrestricted access to all land in the entire country, so long as you camp away from private residences and watercourses.  Norway is a stunning country with a diverse landscape ranging from fjords and lush pasture, to arctic barrens, alpine peaks and glaciers.  I just wish that it was not so prohibitively expensive!

On the plateau between Ulvik and Balestrand, we pull over and hike randomly for two hours in stunning barrens
The real thing!
A short one-hour walk from your car takes you to the Kjenndalsbreen tongue of the Jostedalsbreen Icecap
Looking back down the valley from the glacier
Loen Vatnet (Loen Lake) on the edge of the Jostedalsbreen Icecap
12 hairpin bends of the highway leaving Geiranger; looking into Geiranger Fjord
Early 20th century photochrome of the Geiranger Fjord
The Virtual Hiker atop Flydalsjuvet
Our route up the Geitfonnegga
From the top of Geitfonnegga looking South
Looking down and West into Geiranger Fjord from Geitfonnegga
Breakfast at Høle Kamping, just outside of Geiranger.. a very fine hytte! Waffles? Ja, Takk.
The road up to 1476m Dalsnibba
Two separate day hikes to tongues of the same glacier in Jotunheimen
Sommarbreforing (the rightmost tongue in the image above)
Our Besseggen route, beginning at the Gjendesheim lodge (right) taking a boat down Lake Gjende to Memurubu, and hiking back along the ridge to Gjendesheim
The Besseggen is Norway's most popular trail. 100 hikers leaving on a boat every 15 minutes proves it!
Hiking up to the ridge from Memurubu
Bessvatnet (left) and Lake Gjende (right) from the Besseggen
Getting in line to scramble up to the high point on the ridge, 1743m
The postcard view from the summit looking West along Bessvatnet and Lake Gjende
Stepping off the train in Finse, we spent one night at the DNT hut. On the evening of our arrival, we hiked to the Blåisen tongue of the Hardangerjøkulen
I believe that the town of Finse only has 10 year-round residents; one of them lives here
Crossing a little creek on the way to Blåisen
The Blåisen tongue of the sixth largest glacier in mainland Norway
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