Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Birthday present

Yesterday was my birthday and I guess the best present I got this year, was from my wife.
"Get out of the house and go on a trip, happy birthday!" she said

Thanks M, very much appreciated!

So this last weekend I embarked upon a trip that has been on my mind for a while now. As opposed to ET I would not call home, but walk home. There is an endurance race called Styrkeprøven Rett Vest whose route
starts at Gullbotn, conveniantly accessible via bus and ends at the summit of Lyderhorn, which is my "home mountain". The route takes you over and through the mountains close to the city of Bergen and as I found out, is really well marked.

Due to family commitments I had a late start on the saturday and started walking around 15.30, in beautiful autumn weather. I met quite a few people coming down from Gullfjellet, and even saw a biker somehow making his way down. Can you spot him in the picture below? I only brought my 20mm lens this time, so cropping on my computer would have to make up for any lack of optical tele.

The first hour was mainly spent in the shade, but I still had magnificient views over Samnanger.

It was fairly chilly and a lot of the track was covered in ice, making progress a delicate affair in some exposed places.

My parents live down at the fjord and have seen this patch of snow the whole summer, this is clearly the "shady" side of the summit.

The picture below somehow reminds me of Mordor, but I guess it`s a bit warmer there..

View from the summit of Gullfjellet, 988 metres above sealevel.

The route from Gullfjellet to Redningshytten is one I usually prefer doing on skis, as it offers nice, not too steep hills. Soon I expect there will be snow here. Can`t wait for that to happen :)

Redningshytten, roughly translated to Rescue Cabin, was originally built as a direct consequense of a rescue operation concerning an injured woman and the first cabin, made out of stone, was built in 1929. A very popular destination for sunday trips.

It was now almost dark and I set camp in the fading daylight, pitching my MLD Supermid a whole meter away from the track. Didn`t expect anyone to show up in the dark.

It was a fairly windy and cold night and my toes were a little nippy the next morning. Glad I brough my babyNalgene (the 0.5 l version) which helped thaw my frozen trailshoes. I knew I had quite a few kilometres to cover so I was on the trail at first daylight.

 It was great to be up at this early hour as the light was really nice

I was a bit low on water this morning as there were not a lot of options for filling up my water bottles, I prefer not drinking marsh water..

My route would take me in a circle to the left in this picture and eventually over the mountain straight ahead, towards Ulriken.

Towards Unneland, through a forest in autumn foliage.

Slogging uphill again, a look back towards where I came. The summit of Gullfjellet is to your top left, and the route goes in a wide circle to the right.

I met 3 people on this side of the mountain, but on the other, more popular and easily accessible cityside, I was just one of many hundreds, out enjoying the autumn sunshine  (the city of Bergen is well known for a lot of rain, so the inhabitants usually grab the opportunity if the sun shines..)

View towards Ulriken, which is also quite popular with paragliders.

By the time I had descended Ulriken it was already late in the day, and I would not make it over the last three mountains before it would get dark. And frankly I was knackered.. The trip was longer than I thought..
But, I will try it again next summer, but then taking advantage of an early start and only a daytrip backpack.

So I caught the bus home and spent the rest of the night chilling, well satisfied with a great trip. I feel fortunate to have such great opportunities "right next door".

thanks for reading!