Around the country's largest freshwater island, Helgøya in Mjøsa
Spring offers a unique opportunity: to follow the coastline around Helgøya and take a detour in to Hovinsholmen. This trip shows that you do not have to go up in the mountains to get that hiking feeling.
You will understand what we mean as soon as you start, and I promise that you will feel it when the trip is over. A low water levels means that you can walk along the seashore, if you can call it that in inland Norway, and the surface is rock. Just like in the mountains. You have to be careful not to twist your ankles, but what excellent training this is – both for balance and coordination. Furthermore, you get to see Helgøya and its beautiful scenery from a different angle.
We started at Nessundet and walked east around the island. It is the eastern side that has the best rocks for walking or running. They are a bit bigger, and allow for a more even pace. On the western side, the rocks are smaller which makes it slightly more challenging. In return, there are fewer bays and jetties to walk around or across on the western side compared to the eastern side.
It is possible to stay by the water's edge all the way past Bergevika. You have then already had a taster of the flaky limestone. After Bergevika, there are a few big cliffs. Here you have to find a track up from the shore and follow trails through the forest at the top of the cliffs. Look down, and you will see a carpet of bluebells. You have now reached a small nature reserve. Take the steep, but well maintained, trail back down to the water's edge. Just below the somewhat dilapidated croft is a lime kiln. This was used to burn limestone to lime mortar.
On the southern tip of Helgøya is the Hovinsholmen islet. It is possible to walk dryshod across in spring. Here you will find a burial mound and a lovely walk through a forest of tall pine trees. If you are interested in geology, this spring walk is an experience not to be missed. When you have visited the islet, continue on the western side of Helgøya. You are now over halfway; perhaps you start to feel tired? Keep going – there is plenty of beautiful scenery on which to rest your eyes. As you finally turn the headland, and Skurven and Nes church come into view, it is allowed to start thinking about how lovely an ice cream would taste. Luckily, ice cream is in ample supply by Nessundet. The full round is just under 20 kilometres. This walk is usually possible in late April and early May, but this depends on the snow-melting and the regulation of the water level in Mjøsa.
The route description is written by sprekeopplevelser.no
Show consideration during your visit, and follow these basic guidelines:
• Adhere to the code of conduct for public right of access
• Park at designated car parks and campsites
• Take your litter home or use the bins provided
• Remember the rules for keeping dogs on a lead; respect campfire bans and restrictions, and use designated sites only
• Try to use local shops along the route
• Drive nicely, but not too nicely – keep up with the traffic
• Last, but not least; ENJOY your trip!