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The Stave – Bleik coastal trail in Andøy is one of the Coastal Trails in Vesterålen. This is a trip with varying degrees of difficulty. The trail stretches over a distance of 9 km through a landscape of beaches, rocky shorelines, hills and mountains. The highest point is Måtind (408 masl), offering a fantastic view out towards picturesque Bleiksøya.
The trip from Stave to Bleik, including a detour to Måtinden, takes 5-6 hrs. It is most common, however, to get on the trail at midpoint from the roadway and do half the route, hiking either north towards Bleik or south towards Stave. You do this, of course, after having climbed to the peak of Måtind.
Description of the route: The starting point is the car park at Baugtua, Stavedalen, 4 km from Bleik in the direction of Stave. From the car park, hike west through forest grove up to height 340 m. Continue over the ridge between Staveheia and Breidalen. Here you will pass by five hunting pits dating from the Stone Age. From the junction due south of Nonstind (379 m) you have several possibilities. You can continue west towards Måtind, you can head south towards Høyvika and Stave, or you can go north towards Bleik and the Bleik Beach. Whatever your choice, you will enjoy a light trek with a fantastic view in an area where the steep Vesterålen mountainsides plunge directly down into the ocean below.
At the starting point at Baugtua there are information boards with a map and an overview of sights. The trail is marked with Ts. The trail is a sheep trail with sections of rocky ground and is not always clear to the eye; in these sections the trail is marked with cairns. The trail is also indistinct along the shoreline, but the direction is obvious. The hiking terrain is varied, from mountain rock to moors and grassland.
Along the entire coastal trail you will encounter cultural monuments that bear witness to human settlement as far back as the Stone Age. From Måtind there is a good panorama out towards Bleiksøya, which has one of Vesterålen's largest colonies of puffins. Shags, kittiwakes and guillemots also nest here. Remember to bring along your binoculars!
You can spend the night at Bleik, Andenes or at Stave Camping in cottages, rorbu cabins, hotels or tents. You can also bring along your own tent if you prefer. Remember to review the Outdoor Recreation Act.
You need no other equipment than normal hiking gear. It is recommended to have good footwear since the route runs through varied terrain.
How does one get to the rally point?
Follow Road 82 towards Andenes. Turn off towards Bleik at the intersection just before entering Andenes. From Bleik you can follow county road 976 towards Stave approx. 4 km to the car park at Baugtua.