Back from a hiking tour

This article is part of the series “2022-08: Jämtland and Trøndelag”.

Hello, my dear blog readers. Three weeks of holiday have come to an end today. Mostly I was aborad. The main attraction: an eleven day hiking tour with my wife, my sister, my brother-in-law and my younger nephew.

We mostly hiked in the Swedish Jämtland but visited two Norwegian cabins as well. Our route: StorlienBlåhammarenStorerikvollen (Norway) – Nedalshytta (Norway) – SylarnaGåsenHelagsFältjägarenRamundberget. That’s a total of about 135 km.

Today I scrolled through the photos I made on the tour – it’s more than 1500. So it will take some time to go though, edit them and write some blog articles.

Anyhow, here is a sneak preview. 9 photos of the tour.

Two mountain peaks at the weekend

My wife Annika has arrived in Tromsø on Friday. The weather forecast looked quite well for Saturday (and only for Saturday), so we took the car to the island Hillesøya – the westernmost part of Kvaløya – and went up the mountain Nordkollen (214 m). To our surprise the ascent was mostly secured with a thick rope because it was rocky and pretty steep. We hiked a round trip via the subsidiary summits Sørkollen and Storbergan and back by the sea. We got less sun than expected but at least hardly any rain.

Yesterday we hiked again, this time with a colleague of mine and his family. And this tour was very rainy and we got quite wet. While the others started going back, my colleague and I reached the top of the Blåkollen (461 m) and had even some minutes without rain.

 

A new camera

Next week Annika, my sister, brother in law a nephew and I will start a hiking tour in Sweden and Norway. We will not use a tent but hike from cabin to cabin. Last time I had 6 kilo of camera equipment with me. This year I decided to scale down weight and so I bought a point-and-shoot camera this week: the Sony RX100 VII. It has some disadvantages, but a huuuge advantage: It’s small and weights hardly more than 300 grams. That’s why I even can take a smaller backpack (also bought this week) and save another 1300 grams of weight.

Today I tested the camera, first on my way to work and then on random places, from the center to Telegrafbukta. I know, that the camera has its limitations (being not weatherproof for example) but I’m quite glad that I finally bought it. And here come some test shots from today. All photos are edited in Lightroom.

 

Just a hike up the Rødtinden

Today I joined a group of (much) younger people on a mountain hike up the Rødtinden (470 m). It was special in two ways: First of all it was nice to talk to a bunch of people from the USA, the Netherlands, Austria, Poland and Spain. An then – the weather! It was a real summer day with a cloudless sky and a lot of gorgeous views.

I didn’t take many pictures but some from a small pre-summit that we hiked to after reaching the main summit.

Hiking up the Nordtinden

After I failed reaching the summit of the Nordtinden (640 m) last November I gave it a second try today. It’s so much easier to navigate when there is no snow covering the path and the sparse way marks.

I start to follow the gravel road, which I leave after 2.7 km.

The small trail leads up steadily. It’s not so steep, that I have to climb but steep enough to raise my pulse to hummingbird level. I could blame it on my Covid infection two weeks ago but I guess it’s just a lack of fitness.

A movement to the left wakes me up. It’s a flock of ptarmigan fledglings with an adult. Some flutter away, some stay. I use the confusion to take some photos with my telephoto lens. The photos are heavily cropped, I want to keep distance.

I am above the tree line now and the views are impressive.

Most impressive is a chasm at the side of the trail. The gradient down? Perhaps 400%. Enough to keep safety distance while photographing.

The last part is rocky and pathless but the huge cairns marking the tops of Nordtinden (there seem to be two) are in view so I can navigate just by eye. I take it easy on the boulder fields. I reach summit number one and add myself to the summit register that lies sheltered in an aluminium box.

I continue a bit more west to get a better view to the sea. And there it is – the island Vengsøya with the smaller island Vågøya in the front.

I walk around to take some more pictures. I watch the ferry leaving Vengsøya and climb a bit down the slope to have a closer look to the nameless lake below the mountain Laukviktinden.

Then I walk back in a small circle, pass the other summit cairn and start to descend.

It’s always interesting how not only the view changes but the terrain as well. Round the summits it’s mostly rocks and boulder fields, then more and more grass is present and the path consists also of gravel and then earth, too. On the way back the lake Skulsfjordvatnet lies in the sun.

As most day trips the way back is the same as the way there. So I pass the sign to Nordtinden a second time and am on the gravel road again.

The change from forest to farmland shows that my car is not far away. After four hours and about 12 km I’m back from a lovely mountain hike.

Two more photos showing small things. The first one a beetle from the genus Carabus. The first one a berry from the genus Rubus. I was glad about both discoveries. The difference: The beetle stayed unharmed, the berry was eaten right after taking the picture.

 

Some summer days in Sweden

I was home in Sweden for only three weeks but the time feels long and rich. Annika and I had guests most of the time but some days in between just the two of us.

A short kayak trip in the sun

On 1 July I used my lunch break to paddle to the beach. I took a bath and lunch there and then paddled back to work. Ah, I love this type of lunch breaks!

A day trip to Norrbyskär

On 3 July Annika and I took the car to Norrbyn and from there the ferry to the island Norrbyskär. Always worth visiting, especially when the warm weather invites to a bath.

A wavy kayak trip

On 4 July Annika and I made a kayak trip to and round the island Tarv. Normally this would be a quite relaxing tour of 10–11 km. But due to the windy weather the sea was pretty choppy and we had to focus a lot on the waves and the rocks.

No one of us took any photos there, but in the more sheltered waters beside and behind the island it was possible to take some photos again. And another bath.

Finally rain

On 7 July it finally rained in Obbola. The rain came too late for the dried up lawn but probably saved a lot of flowers and bushes in our garden.

Hiking twice

On 8 July Annika and hiked twice. First round Grössjön together with guests from Germany, then just we two at the Kronören naturreservat. Grössjön is mostly forest and bogs (and a lot of mosquitoes) while Kronören is also open landscape by the sea.

Back to Tromsø

Ten days ago an 10 July I travelled back to Tromsø. Train Departure in Umeå 2:15 in the night, bus arrival in Tromsø was 17:30.

I felt cold and made a Covid test the next day. Bang – positive! Therefore I couldn’t take advantage of the beautiful summer weather in Tromsø but stayed home in bed the week.

I made some short hikes on the weekend but the weather was dull, foggy and rainy.

 

Rekvik – a place to visit again

The weather was overcast and we were hungry, but the short hiking trail starting in Rekvik on Kvaløya  is definitely a place to be visited again. With better weather and more time to take pictures.

Hiking up the Slåka and Guratinden

Slåka (314 m) and Guratinden (424 m) are two mountains on the island Kvaløya. I know them from my book “På tur i Tromsø” where they are described in tour 7. This tour is marked as green, which is the easiest category in this book. I chose it because on the higher mountains there still might be some amount of snow and I wanted to avoid that.

I took the car to the parking place in Skulsfjorden yesterday. The parking place I already knew from another tour. Then I tried to find the hiking trail while the cows starred at me curiously and the bravest of them came to sniff at my hand.

It took a while until I found the way which was not were the map showed it. It forked quite soon and maybe I followed the wrong direction because somewhere over the tree line it faded away somewhere in the heather. Way marks and sign posts you will hardly find when you hike like this in Norway. It is assumed that you can orientate in pathless terrain even on beginner tours. Anyhow a way to the top of the Slåka was easy to find without paths. Here I had a fantastic 360° view. In the north the mountain Nuortagáisi (or Nordtinden), in the south the fjord Kaldfjorden, in the west the island Vengsøya and behind that the open sea. And where there was no sea there were mountains, mountains, mountains, all higher ones still covered in snow.

Without any break I continued to the Guratinden. Again I could not find a reliable hiking trail but more a patchwork of paths, some of them probably animal tracks. Anyhow it’s not far to the Guratinden, where I took a rest to enjoy the view and something to drink.

Although it was the beginning of June it was very chilly on the summit, mostly because of the strong wind. I guess it was 7 °C and at least 15 m/s. Already on my way up I wore gloves and a woollen cap, now I was really glad about my down hoodie. Without I wouldn’t have taken any rest.

On the way back I followed other trails and tracks or I just cut cross country. Sometimes I walked on rocks, sometimes on boggy ground but mostly on heather.

Round three hours later I was at my car after 9 km hiking and round about 650 metres in altitude. And here you can see how it looks on the map when you hardly follow any trails ;-)

 

Thursday paddling round Grindøya

Yesterday I was in the mountains – today at 18:00 I joined the torsdagspadling (Thursday paddling) of the Tromsø Sea Kayakers Club. Together with 16 others paddlers and a dachshund we crossed the Grindøyskarven and rounded the island Grindøy.

The conditions were excellent: Hardly any wind, a calm sea, blue sky and temperatures almost 20 °C. Perfect not only for paddling but also for taking a break in the sun – of course at the northern tip where we didn’t disturb the common eiders that nest along the beaches of Grindøya. Then we paddled back – with a small sprint to avoid two ships crossing. No danger however because the guides have a VHF to talk to the ships but they already had spotted us and had slowed down. Three hours later we were back from our round 12 km long paddle tour.

Takk for turen, thanks for the tour! And thanks to all organisers of the torsdagspadling. Great initiative!

After work promenade to the Keiptuva

38.5 km by car, 5.5 km by foot. Some hundred metres in altitude. Warm and windy weather. Forests, slopes, shallow bogs, mountain paths, water to ford, flowers, snow fields, lakes, tundra, rocks, views to the mountains of Kvaløya, the fjord, the open sea and Greenland. OK, cross out the last point. Anyhow, quite much for a short after work promenade.