Day One: Krossbu to Falkeberget

I alighted from the train at Otta, this was my third visit to Otta so for me it was familiar territory. Interestingly whilst sorting my gear the train to Oslo arrived and I noticed 5 hikers one of whom was carrying a Golite rucksack, I immediately thought of the Armchair Adventurer who was returning from a trip to Rondane National Park, details of which can be found on his blog. I had time for lunch and a little stroll around Otta before the bus to Sogndal arrived. It is a little over 2 hours bus trip to Krossbu, one of the many stops on the western side of Jotunheimen. Whilst on the bus I met two Norwegian hikers of a similar age to me who were heading out for three weeks and their plan was to walk from Jotunheimen to the Swedish Border which sounded a fascinating trip. However, there was some concern on their part as to whether I should be out hiking by myself, a theme which was repeated several times over the coming days, though they did recognise that if I was staying to the trails then the risks were lessened and as I advised each day I would be passing a DNT shelter, if I had a problem. It was 5:30 pm before I started walking with my Montane Lightspeed on to block the wind. The sun was shining through broken cloud and whilst the forecast was for rain, I was optimistic that I may at least get a dry first day. So I set off along the DNT marked trail heading south along the Bøvre valley towards a saddle to the west of Falkeberget, it was in the vicinity of the saddle that I proposed to camp for the night. The walk along the plain was pleasant with a gradual climb, whilst out to the east I could see Smørstabbrean the first of many glaciers that while receding are still evident in Jotunheimen. As I climbed I also begun to recognise how light it was and camping late in the evening was of no real concern. Later I discovered that it never really gets dark in Jotunheimen at this time of the year. It was an uneventful climb though I was a little surprised when i found that I was walking through well trodden snow drifts which had softened in the afternoon sun, something that I had not expected when I left Copenhagen. During this section of the walk I did wonder however, whether painting ceilings of an apartment was good training, my decision was it was good training for using Pacer Poles, but I am less certain about my legs.
I passed through the saddle and was immediately stunned by the view of the twin peaks of Fannaråken to the west and the high peaks to the south east, it certainly brought a smile to my face after a long trip to get here. I also noticed the increasingly grey clouds and begun to hope that I could get the tent up and have dinner before it rained. Sadly, no, as I commenced to put the tent up on a relatively flat site below the saddle the light rain started and it was about this time the the fiddle factors of the Laser Competition began to annoy me, or was it because I was tired? With the tent set up it was time for dinner and my first Real Turmat for the trip cooked in the vestibule of the tent. It had been a long two days to get here and I went to sleep listening to the rain on the tent.

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12 Responses to Day One: Krossbu to Falkeberget

  1. Dave Hanlon says:

    Nice start. been looking forward to the kick off. Just responded to your comment on my post again. Could have better put it here so here goes: As I've dredged through my memory of Otta station on July 7the I remember seeing someone wearing a wide brimmed hat. The hat caught my attention because you don't see too many of them outside of canoes. The wearer was stood a short way to the left of the station building as you look towards the building. Does that fit your description? If so I can't have been more than a few yards away at one point.

  2. Holdfast says:

    Yep, been looking forward to this report too. Jotunheimen looks burly Roger. Funny you two bumping into each other like that. Norway seems to be home of the GoLite pack this summer!Looking forward to more posts.

  3. Martin Rye says:

    Walk light and Golite I say. Join the club it makes sense. Walking in Norway is making a whole lot of sense. Stunning beyond measure Roger.

  4. Dave yes the hat is a Tilley which I take for sun and rain protection, this trip it spent a lot of time in my pack, my Chocolate Fish Thingy (Merino Buff) was used to keep the head warm. Thanks Holdfast and Martin, I will comment more on why I used a Lim45 and not a Golite in an up coming review. However, I have tried several frameless packs including the Pinnacle and for me they don't work too well especially given a long term lower back problem.

  5. Dave Hanlon says:

    Own two Tilley hats but only ever used them when canoeing. Never crossed my mind to take them backpacking. Rondane made me feel like an ant on teh face of a big planet. The encounter with you at Ota has precisely the opposite effect. I know its a cliche but it is a small world indeed.On the subject of snow, we encountered quite a lot too. In an earlier version we'd planned to go to the Jotunheimen but going from what we knew of the place and later what we could glean from the net, the area appears to hold more snow later in the season than Rondane.

  6. Dave I have read your day 2 account and intend to leave a comment. The snow in Jotunheimen is mixed where I was for the first 4 days there was plenty of snow which made for challenging walking, but after that it was less of an issue even though the altitudes were the same. The snow was melting fast though so I imagine in a week or two it would not be bad there, but there would be more hikers and probably more mosquitoes as well.

  7. Holdfast says:

    Roger, my mistake. I've seen so many GoLite packs on these blogs recently that I thought you were using one as well.

  8. Hendrik M says:

    A good start into a nice trip. How funny that you and Dave bumped into each other in Otta!

  9. Thanks Hendrik, I often wonder whether one day you, Holdfast, Dave and myself will all meet up whether it be a mountain top, a bar or an airport or …Time will tell

  10. Dave Hanlon says:

    Can the Sacndinavian boundary be temporarily bent a litte to include Holland for the Scandinavian bloggers meet Hendrik was talking about?

  11. Dave I have read your day 2 account and intend to leave a comment. The snow in Jotunheimen is mixed where I was for the first 4 days there was plenty of snow which made for challenging walking, but after that it was less of an issue even though the altitudes were the same. The snow was melting fast though so I imagine in a week or two it would not be bad there, but there would be more hikers and probably more mosquitoes as well.

  12. Dave Hanlon says:

    Nice start. been looking forward to the kick off. Just responded to your comment on my post again. Could have better put it here so here goes: As I've dredged through my memory of Otta station on July 7the I remember seeing someone wearing a wide brimmed hat. The hat caught my attention because you don't see too many of them outside of canoes. The wearer was stood a short way to the left of the station building as you look towards the building. Does that fit your description? If so I can't have been more than a few yards away at one point.

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