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Hiking in Eid, Hornindal, Selje, Stryn, Vågsøy
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Scale the heights of Skåla
If you want to get to the top in life, you have to be prepared for some uphill battles. To reach the top of Skåla (1848 m), you won’t find a longer uphill stretch in the whole of Norway.
Skåla - this imposingly beautiful giant of a mountain - towers over the village of Loen. A good man-made track winds its way through the rocky terrain a whopping 1848 vertical metres from the shoreline of the fjord. Skålatårnet - the tower at the summit - is not just the kind of DNT (Norwegian Trekking Association) self-service cabin where you spend the night or simply whip up a well-deserved warm cup of coffee on the summit. This was originally built as a sanatarium to cure illness, and the place hasn’t lost its remedial qualities, as there can scarcely be anything healthier than fjord views and a cool glacial breeze.
A walk of contrasts
If you want to get the most out of the top of Ljøsuregga, you‘ll have to sneak through the rock piles.
This is a trip full of contrasts! On the way up to Ljøsuregga, the mountain experiences are virtually lining up for you. Firstly, you’ll pass a multitude of swimming holes up along the lush river to Kjenndalsvatnet (Lake Kjenndal). Then from boulder to boulder you walk up through the rocky debris towards the summit, before it gradually flattens out, when you’ll probably notice a feeling of freedom coming over you. Then finally, a beautiful flat plateau awaits, providing views in all directions, and you’ll feel on top of the world!
Kattanakken (the cat’s neck) - where no-one thought it possible to hike. How wrong could they be!
When the weather is fine here, it’s showtime! From the top of Kattanakken you will see Briksdal Glacier in all its glory far down below, surrounded by rugged mountains and cascading waterfalls. Your admission ticket to this show is your own exertion - a solid but feasible workout up steep terrain and then some scrambling as you approach the final ridge. From some angles this hardly looks possible, but don’t listen to what they say about curiosity killing the cat, as scaling this cat’s neck is very achievable.
Be a mountain farmer for a day
Living history! Perched out on a rocky knoll overlooking Oppstrynsvatnet (Oppstryn Lake) lies the abandoned farm called Segestad.
The trail up to Segestad, which winds up the mountain beside the mighty Glomnesfoss (Glomnes waterfall), not only takes you high up in the mountains but also on a journey back in time. The farm, which is open for visitors, provides a unique insight into how mountain farmers managed to survive only a few generations ago. On the farm you will find information boards about life here in the old days, and you can even jump around in the hay in the barn!
There are many mountains that vie for our attention in the Nordfjord area, but it’s Hornindalsrokken (Rokken) that really stands out.
With her sharp, pointy profile it is almost impossible not to notice this mountain top north of Hornindalssætra. But what does the world look like from her summit? Hornindalsrokken, or "Rokken" as she is affectionately known, is tougher than she first appears to be. From Sætredalen the trail is quite steep, but is surprisingly easy for mountain hikers. And there's only one thing to say about the view: it “rokks”!
Between Stryn Ski Centre and Ullsheim in Markane there is a great area for bicycling! Easy, rugged terrain and views of mountains and the fjord.
An embarrassment of riches
You can either choose to eat your lunch pack and on an idyllic meadow, or up on the summit with sweeping panoramic views over the fjord and mountains - right in the middle of Nordfjord.
The trip up to Trollenykjen near the town of Nordfjordeid will present you with at least two highlights. Halfway to the top, you’ll come across the beautiful mountain farm Skipenesetra. An hour later, you’ll be standing on top of Trollenykjen - with views over Hornindalsvatnet, Nordfjorden, as well as mountains in all directions. You almost feel overwhelmed with guilt when you’re on this peak. How is it possible to get so much out of a couple of hour’s walk? Well, some mountains just give more than others.
Hit the wall!
If you thought the steep hillsides in Nordfjord are impressive to look at, why not impress yourself and climb them all the way up to the top?
Admittedly, hanging from a steep mountainside above a fjord is not something you do every day, and you would think it sounds strenuous and somewhat dangerous. However, thanks to a well-prepared climbing track to the top of Hoven (1010 meters above the fjord), most people manage to climb the Via Ferrata trail (“iron road”) in Loen. A guide is with you all the way and with a harness attached, you can’t fall. It is just a matter of taking in the view!
Grytings and salutations from high above Stryn
If you stand on top of Gryta (the casserole) you are, if only for a moment, standing at the highest point of the town of Stryn.
Gryta is the Norwegian word for casserole - the warm, energy-giving everyday meal which is easy to whip up - just like the nice uphill trail from the parking area of Bøasetra. The trip ends up at a spectacular viewpoint from a steep cliff that will fill your stomach with butterflies. Up here, you can spy on all the people in the centre of Stryn and send them a pleasant thought, as they’ll be blissfully unaware of what you’re being served up on this mountain top.
High on glaciers
Long live the Queen of Western Norway!
The well-known nickname for Lodalskåpa, Vestlandsdronninga (the Queen of Western Norway), speaks volumes about just how majestic this mountain is and how royal you will feel when you are at the top! The trip from Bødalsetra up to the cairn on the 2083-metre summit is a long but delightful journey from lush pastures to the snow-covered glacier. The trip does present its challenges: be prepared for some rigorous inclines, some walking on snow and ice, and some rather steep scrambling up the final approach. But once at the top you’ll be rewarded with a wide view over the National Park and an ice landscape you could hardly have imagined.