Norwegian Mountains, Møre og Romsdal
Trongegga, Storhylla and Masdalhornet, June 14 2008
To the main Masdalhornet page (maps, route descriptions, etc.)
It's a big "mystery" ..
why it took me 2,5 years to get to the top of Masdalhornet, only 16Km away from where I live. The best answer I can give is that must have been "saving it" for a sunny day. This sunny day came in mid-June 2008, and I brought my aging buddy Troll along for the walk. On the way to Årskogdalen, I watched the steep north and south slopes with great interest. In the coming years, I will be exploring these routes. But today, I would follow the trade route via Trongegga and Storhylla.
The time was 11:30AM when we left the car at Høgebakken/Vartdalsætra. With exception of the local sheep and cows, I was pretty much alone up here. I had been here only once before, when I visited Åvasstinden back in 2006.
On my way up to Trongegga, I noticed that there wasn't cellular coverage in Årskogdalen. I was expecting a call, and tried to get up to the ridge as fast as I could. I expected coverage to be restored on the ridge, and I was right. The big question was how much snow would there be on the plateau. From Trongegga, I had a 3,5Km walk ahead of me, and I hoped it wouldn't be on rotten snow. I arrived on Trongegga 12:35PM, and got the answer I hoped for; the plateau was almost free of snow.
Trongegga was an interesting place. I had been wondering how narrow it was up here, and now I could see for myself. No need to bite the tongue, but I could easily imagine that a winter crossing would be a different story.
I continued towards Masdalhornet, sticking with the north & east edge all the way. I was intrigued by the Grøthornet - Storhylla ridge, but it was too wild to touch without a rope. Troll attempted some walking on the plateau, but failed. Without a path to stick to, he had no sense of direction (he's almost blind) and went left, right, forward and backward. A leash would have come in handy..
We arrived Masdalhornet 13:40PM. The view down to the fjord was just outstanding. Crystal blue sea, green valleys, snowy mountains and a "boiling" sky. Very dramatic. I gave Troll lunch and water and headed down to a pinnacle 50m below the summit, hoping to get a better understanding of how steep the mountain was rising up from the fjord. It was steep, alright.
Troll walked most of the way back to Trongegga. This was a tormenting walk, both for the dog and myself. Every 30 seconds, I had to correct his course, and he responded with what? what? before taking a pause. Poor dog. It's not easy getting old...
It had been a nice, but uneventful walk to and from Masdalhornet. We were back at the trailhead 15:40PM. The drive back down to nordre-Vartdal was mostly about understanding how incredible stupid sheep are. There were sheep throughout the valley, and they all had to run 0,5Km (at least) along the road before leaving it. In any case, I plan to return to Masdalhornet, hoping to find a nice gully route directly up from nordre-Vartdal.
The pictures were taken with a Canon EOS 300D + Canon EF-S 17-85mm IS USM F 4-5.6
(Full size images)
(Images scaled down.
85mm zoom view from Trongegga
61mm zoom view from Storhylla
Wide-angle view from Masdalhornet
85mm zoom views from Masdalhornet