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Go on a three-day cabin to cabin hike off the beaten track in Norway
Go on a three-day cabin to cabin hike off the beaten track in Norway
Hiking in the Etnefjellene mountains.
Photo: Arild Bjordal
Hiking in the Etnefjellene mountains.
Photo: Arild Bjordal

Three-day cabin to cabin hikes
off the beaten track

When winter finally releases its grip on the Norwegian mountains, outdoor enthusiasts can’t wait to put on their hiking boots and take off to discover the wild landscapes all over the country. If you don’t want to meet too many people along the way, these five cabin to cabin hikes are just for you.

    The beauty of famous trails and attractions like Besseggen, Preikestolen, and Trolltunga, lure many tourists into exploring Norway’s hiking trails. It can be crowded at the most popular sites during the high season, though.

    If you want to avoid the crowds, try following one of these five lesser-known hiking trips. You’ll be out on the trails for three or four days, but can still spend the night with a roof over your head, in some of the Norwegian Trekking Association’s many cabins.

  1. 1. The triangle in Valle and Bygland, Setesdal

    Duration: 3 days. Øyuvsbu–Gaukhei–Tjønndalen–Øyuvsbu
    Length: 50 kilometres
    Level: medium, suitable for adults

    Valle and Bygland are both situated in Setesdal in Southern Norway. The area offers plenty of panoramic views of the many crystal-clear lakes and streams that are scattered around the beautiful undulating terrain of the Setesdal valley. You will also meet quite a few sheep along the way, grazing the terrain and preventing it from overgrowing.

    You’ll need three days on this classical hike between the cabins Øyuvsbu, Tjønndalen and Gaukhei, which all offer plenty of space. Øyuvsbu and Gaukhei are self-service cabins, which means that you can buy food there – but you need to bring your own food if you’re spending the night at the no-service cabin Tjønndalen.

    If you want to use public transport, take the bus to Langeid in Bygland. From Langeid, it’s about a two-hour hike to the Tjønndalen cabin where you can start and end your trip. If you arrive by car, leave it on the parking lot on Suleskarvegen. From there you will walk to the Øyuvsbu cabin in about half an hour.

  2. 2. The taste of the Sunndalsfjella mountains

    Duration: 3 days. Aursjøhytta–Reinsvassbu–Raubergshytta–Aursjøhytta
    Length: 55 kilometres
    Level: demanding, suitable for adults

    While exploring the Sunndalsfjella area between the Dovrefjell mountains and Eikesdalen you can admire the magnificent views of high alpine peaks and lush valleys. The region features some of the most diverse mountain flora throughout Scandinavia, with plant species that normally only grow in Northern Norway or on Svalbard and Greenland. This area is also the habitat of Arctic foxes, reindeer, and more than 160 bird species.

    The staffed lodge Aursjøhytta offers great service and a three-course dinner, while Reinsvassbu and Raubergshytta are self-service cabins equipped with all you need for cooking and sleeping, including affordable food.

    The hike starts at Lesjaskog, which you can easily reach by bus or by car from Åndalsnes or from Dombås, depending on which direction you come from.

  3. 3. No limits in the Sylan mountains, Trøndelag

    Duration: 3 days. Nedalshytta–Sylarna Fjällstation–Storerikvollen–Nedalshytta
    Length: 60 kilometres
    Level: medium, suitable from 12 years

    Three days of hiking in Trøndelag, near and across the Swedish border. This journey will bring you over the incredible Sylan mountain range and its highest point Storsylen. Enjoy the wide views and high peaks rising up from the barren and rocky plains. The terrain is easy to walk in.

    The Norwegian Trekking Association operates the cabins at the Norwegian side of the border, while the Swedish Trekking Association operates Sylarna Fjällstation in Sweden. Nedalshytta and Storerikvollen are staffed during easter and the summer season and self-serviced the rest of the year.

    The largest city in the area is Trondheim. From there you can catch a bus to Stugudal and then a taxi to the Nedalshytta cabin, the starting point for this hike.

  4. 4. The fertile Etnefjella mountains, Haugesund

    Duration: 3 days. Rullestad–Simlebu–Sandvasshytta–Åkrafjorden
    Length: 25 kilometres
    Level: medium, suitable for children from 12 years

    During this hike, just an hour from the city Haugesund in Fjord Norway, you will experience a varied landscape, going from bare mountains to beautiful forests and pristine lakes. The last stretch of the hike offers a magnificent view on the Åkrafjord and the Folgefonna glacier.

    You can spend the night at the comfortable self-service cabins Simlebu and Sandvasshytta.

    In both Rullestad and Markhus, where the hike starts and ends, there are bus connections with Haugesund and Oslo. Make sure to check the bus time table in advance.

  5. 5. Sulitjelma to Saltfjellet, Nordland

    Duration: 3 or 4 days. Sulitjelma–Tjoarvihytta–Balvasshytta–Argaladhytta–Trygvebu–Graddis
    Length: 50 kilometres
    Level: medium, suitable for children from 12 years

    A perfect hike for those who wish to see a lush area in Northern Norway and at the same time experience a part of the Grensesømmen trail. You’ll hike through the Junkerdalen national park where you’ll get great views of mountain peaks, lush forests, and beautiful lakes. This area is also known for its rare plant species that are usually only found further north or on other continents.

    All the cabins on this hike are self-serviced. At Graddis fjellstue, you can have a meal before you head back to town.

    You can take a bus from Bodø to Sulitjelma. To get back from Graddis fjellstue (close to Trygvebu), take a bus or taxi to Storjord and from there a train or bus back to Bodø.

  6. The Norwegian Trekking Association (DNT)

    The Norwegian Trekking Association is by far Norway’s biggest outdoor organisation. For more than 150 years DNT has been organising hiking tours for everyone, and inclusion is one of its official core values.

    Read more about The Norwegian Trekking Association.

    Accommodation by the Norwegian Trekking Association (DNT)

    Staffed lodges
    Staffed lodges serve breakfast and dinner. Many have showers and electricity. Only open in certain seasons.

    Self-service cabins
    The self-service cabins are equipped with all you need for cooking and sleeping, but a sleeping bag liner or hut sleeper is required. Stocked with provisions including tinned goods, coffee, tea, crispbread, and instant soup. The selection can vary from cabin to cabin.

    No-service cabins
    No-service cabins usually have all you need for cooking and sleeping, but no provisions. In a few simpler no-service cabins you’ll need a sleeping bag and some other equipment.

    Mountain safety tips

    Every year, Norwegian volunteer rescue crews go into the mountains to retrieve travellers who have lost their way, are tired or injured, or have encountered problems after dark. These travellers are often dressed in everyday clothes and lack suitable equipment.

    Do this:
    Research the length, duration, and recommended physical conditioning for the hike you want to do.

    Check the weather conditions and always listen to local mountain residents.

    Buy or rent the right equipment for your trip.

    Always bring enough food, drinks, and an extra change of clothes in your backpack.

    Check out the possibility of joining a guided tour or use a local guide in order to minimize risks.

    Avoid this:
    Do not wear jeans, trainers, or other everyday clothing.

    Do not start your trip too late in the day, as you might risk having to hike in the dark.

    Never start your mountain hike without being in good enough physical shape.

    Do not depend on a map on your mobile device, as there is not always coverage in the mountains.

    Don’t leave anything, including trash, behind.

    Be prepared and pack your backpack like a pro with our hiking tips.

Find your hike

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    Statens Kartverk, Geovekst og kommuner - Geodata AS
    The Norwegian Trekking Association (DNT)

    The Norwegian Trekking Association is by far Norway’s biggest outdoor organisation. For more than 150 years DNT has been organising hiking tours for everyone, and inclusion is one of its official core values.

    Read more about The Norwegian Trekking Association.

    Accommodation by the Norwegian Trekking Association (DNT)

    Staffed lodges
    Staffed lodges serve breakfast and dinner. Many have showers and electricity. Only open in certain seasons.

    Self-service cabins
    The self-service cabins are equipped with all you need for cooking and sleeping, but a sleeping bag liner or hut sleeper is required. Stocked with provisions including tinned goods, coffee, tea, crispbread, and instant soup. The selection can vary from cabin to cabin.

    No-service cabins
    No-service cabins usually have all you need for cooking and sleeping, but no provisions. In a few simpler no-service cabins you’ll need a sleeping bag and some other equipment.

    Mountain safety tips

    Every year, Norwegian volunteer rescue crews go into the mountains to retrieve travellers who have lost their way, are tired or injured, or have encountered problems after dark. These travellers are often dressed in everyday clothes and lack suitable equipment.

    Do this:
    Research the length, duration, and recommended physical conditioning for the hike you want to do.

    Check the weather conditions and always listen to local mountain residents.

    Buy or rent the right equipment for your trip.

    Always bring enough food, drinks, and an extra change of clothes in your backpack.

    Check out the possibility of joining a guided tour or use a local guide in order to minimize risks.

    Avoid this:
    Do not wear jeans, trainers, or other everyday clothing.

    Do not start your trip too late in the day, as you might risk having to hike in the dark.

    Never start your mountain hike without being in good enough physical shape.

    Do not depend on a map on your mobile device, as there is not always coverage in the mountains.

    Don’t leave anything, including trash, behind.

    Be prepared and pack your backpack like a pro with our hiking tips.

    Tips before venturing into the wild

    Take advantage of top offers

    See our selection of companies that work hard to make you happy all through your trip.

    Different hikes for different people

    One of the best things about hiking is that everyone can do it! Find a hike that suits your fitness level.

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