Accommodations & Logistics
Accomodation is in comfortable hotels, mountain farms and lodges with double rooms and private bathrooms. On one night due to the remote location and nature of the lodge the rooms may share bathroom facilities. This is all part of the Norwegian mountain experience.
Bags will be transported with us daily in our vehicle so only a daypack is required each day during our walks and hikes to carry water, lunch, snacks and all weather gear.
Meals will be provided from dinner on Day 1 until breakfast on Day 8 and will be taken in the respective lodgings. Dinners will mostly be a 3 course meal served in the dining room and breakfast will mostly be a buffet in the Norwegian style. Lunches will be packed lunches prepared each morning and taken along to be enjoyed at a midday stop, generally at the highest point of the day’s walk/hike. The quality of food in Norway is excellent and we will experience the specialties of the region in each night’s lodging.
This itinerary really encompasses some of the very best of Norway with respect to outdoor walking and hiking along with the ability to stay in nice accommodation each night and experience some very fine Norwegian culture and food. We will encounter other hikers each day but these will mostly be Norwegian as the destinations on our itinerary are generally where the locals choose to go and experience the best of what their own country has to offer.
Day 1 - Arrival
Meeting at the Otta train station. There is an excellent connection directly from the Oslo’s main airport to Otta. Tickets with comfortable, assigned seating can be arranged in advance and sent to your smartphone. This is a 3 hour train trip with no changes and there is one train leaving Gardermoen airport at 2:30pm and arriving at 5:30 pm into Otta.
The group will be met and we will drive 45 minutes to a well known and respected mountain farm at the edge of the Jotunheimen National Park. This mountain farm is known far and wide for its excellent accommodation and even better for its kitchen specializing in local regional favorites. On the way we will have a group orientation to go over the basics of what to expect over the upcoming week. Dinner will be at this mountain restaurant. There is a cozy bar and lounge area with views over the surrounding mountains for after dinner relaxation.
Day 2 – Local Brimiland Walk
We will start today with a leisurely breakfast at the mountain lodge and then head out for a first warm up walk/hike into the surrounding mountains from where we will get a nice overview of where we will be heading during the course of the upcoming week. This is a very scenic walk and is meant as an introductory walk as it really isn’t that difficult. The total ascent and descent will be approximately 600-700 meters and we will walk between 4-5 hours today. The remainder of the afternoon is free to explore this mountain farm and its surrounding at your leisure. It is a working farm has been beautifully restored. There is a wonderful café on the premises for cake and coffee and outdoor seating as well as a very cozy lounge in the barn annex with beautiful views of the lake and mountains.
Dinner and lodging will be taken at this same hotel as the previous evening. This is really an excellent restaurant and represents the best of the working Norwegian mountain farms.
Day 3 – Lake Gjende and Bukkelaegret Walk
This will be a very early start after breakfast this morning to catch the 7:45am boat at Gjendesheim in order to reach the starting point of today’s hike at Gjendebu. We will hike the Bukkelaegret which is the lesser known yet more beautiful twin of the Besseggen hike and finish the walk at Memurubu. Today will be between 5-6 hours of walking and we will ascend/descend approximately 700 meters. We will take a boat back to Gjendesheim and stay overnight and have dinner and breakfast at the Gjendesheim Hotel. For those very energetic people it is possible to hike back to Gjendesheim rather than take the boat.
Day 4 – Hike up Galdhøpiggen – Norway’s Highest Mountain
After breakfast we will drive to the base of Norway’s highest mountain. We start out at the Spiterstulen lodge at 1,086 meters and hike up to the summit of Galdhøpiggen at 2,469 meters. This is a wildly beautiful hike. It is more steep than long and we will take this at a moderate pace. The total walking time today will be between 7-8 hours, including a relaxing lunch stop at the top of the mountain. The views from the top are stunning. There are some snow fields to walk across but all very manageable and quite a lot of fun. Don’t forget sunscreen and sunglasses.
We will stay at either a local mountain farm or a more centrally located hotel in the nearby town of Lom. Dinner, bed and breakfast at the hotel. In any case it will be a relaxing locale to unwind after the long day and get a good night’s rest.
Day 5 – Drive over the mountains to the fjord at Geiranger
This is a truly spectacular 2 hour drive thru the mountains and then down to the beautiful fjord town of Geiranger. Although this is quite a picturesque and well visited town our goal today is a mountain farm well outside any mass tourist circles. We will catch a private water taxi at the harbor and go out to the starting off point at the edge of the fjord and hike up a well marked and maintained trail to a mountain farm perched on a ledge over the fjord with views in every direction of the water, snow capped mountains and water falls cascading down. As is tradition we will enjoy a Champagne packed lunch and continue along the trail and walk back to town. This walk will take approximately 4-5 hours in total, including a lunch stop. It is not overall particularly difficult hike but the first bit is straight up from sea level to 800 meters affording amazing views the entire way. If anyone is feeling like a quick dip in the water the fjord offers a refreshing swim on the way back to town. Dinner, bed and breakfast will be taken at a very nice comfortable hotel in this fjord-side town. There will be time to explore and relax upon returning at the end of the day.
Day 6 – Fjordland Drive to Øye and hike Slogen
After breakfast we drive along the fjords and up and over a mountain to begin our hike up to the summit of Mt Slogen in the Sunnmøre Alps. This is a challenging day and we will walk for 7 hours up to an altitude of 1,564 meters from sea level. This is a classic Norwegian mountain walk with fantastic mountain views, nature and water everywhere.
This evening we will stay at a very nice Hotel in Øye and enjoy a well prepared meal in this famous lodging for its history as well as it’s grounds, kitchen and overall charming atmosphere.
Day 7 – Hiking the Romsdal Ridge (Romsdalseggen)
After breakfast we will drive on to Åndalsnes at the edge of the Romsdal Fjord and take on perhaps the most spectacular hike thusfar, Romsdalseggen. We hike up from just outside of town and ascend approximately 1,000 meters to the beginning of a truly spectacular ridge walk that leads all the way back to the center of town. This is an exceptional hike and we can take this at a very relaxing pace that will take approximately 6 hours for this 10km walk. There are parts of this walk that the Norwegians call “airy” but no worries. It is very doable and the views of the fjord, surrounding snow capped mountains and beautiful farms and lush fields of the Romsdal Valley below are extremely impressive.
Dinner and lodging tonite will be in a cozy Romsdal Valley hotel with excellent food for a final, leisurely, farewell dinner.
Day 8 – Farewell
The trip ends after breakfast this morning. There is a train back to the Oslo airport from Åndalsnes at 9:30am that takes 5 hours. Alternatively Ålesund airport is reachable by bus and flights from there connect back to Olso or Amsterdam if that is easier. We can help in arranging either.
July 29 - August 5, 2017
Cost - $2995/person (Excluding Airfare)
This is a moderately challenging itinerary and those people in good physical shape with the stamina to walk between 5-7 hours per day will find this within their ability. Most days will involve ascents and descents in the range of 700 to 1,000 meters to fantastically beautiful peaks, ridges, lakes, snowfields, mountain farms and fjords. We will take a moderate pace and work to make sure that the group makes it together while allowing individual flexibility outside of the group pace, conditions permitting.