Norwegian Mountains, Møre og Romsdal
|Fylke/Kommune :||Møre og Romsdal/Fræna,Eide|
1220-I Hustad (Statens Kartverk, Norge 1:50 000)
|Primary factor :||
|Hiked :||June 2008|
|See also :||
|See also :||Other Fræna and Eide mountains|
The municipalities Fræna and Eide share a standalone mountain massif enclosed by roads on all sides. Talstadhesten (913m) is the highest top on this massif. The eastern part of the massif is known as Sandnestindan, where Stordalstinden (895m) is the highest top. A traverse of Sandnestindan comprise the tops Snipa (685m), Hældalstinden (705m), Blåfjellet (864m), Stordalstinden (895m), Trolltindan (891m) and Tverrfjellet (835m). The ascent begins by Trøa on the southeast side, and ends at Ringstad on the northwest side (descent from the Tverrfjellet-Talstadhesten saddle).
However, this page describes a roundtrip from the south that includes a visit to the Trollkyrkja grottos, a very popular tourist attraction, and indeed worth a visit. The waterfalls inside the mountain are simply spectacular.
You have several options; a) You can only visit the grottos, b) you can hike directly up to Stordalstinden (boulder - not recommended), c) hike steep up to Trolltindan, d) hike up to Tverrfjellet and follow the ridge to Trolltindan, or e) the complete roundtrip as described on this page. The complete roundtrip is long (thus, slightly strenuous), but there are no difficult parts. A traverse across Trolltindan may seem airy to some people, but there is a well-defined path and no immediate exposure.
Stordalstinden (Norge 1:50,000: 891m, Økonomisk Kartverk: 895,3m, UTM 32 V 412659 6975051) has a primary factor of 383m towards the higher parent mountain Talstadhesten (913m). The defining saddle (approx. UTM 32 V 409639 6974451) is found between Tverrfjellet and Talstadhesten. Ref. Økonomisk Kartverk (5m contours), the saddle is within the range 510-515m, interpolated to 512m.
Stordalstinden has two tops. The eastern top (where the municipality border run) is marked as 891m on the 1:50,000 map. Økonomisk Kartverk (ØK) states that the eastern top is 895,3m and the western top is 895,2m. Personal observation clearly rated the western top as the higher, but looking back on the eastern top, there were doubts. However, this site will (for now) follow ØK. A GPS reading on the western top reported 900m with (1m error margin) as average over a 10-minute period. No measuring took place on the eastern top. The track log read 903m as the highest elevation point while passing the eastern top.
Blåfjellet (Norge 1:50,000: 864m, Økonomisk Kartverk: 863,66m, UTM 32 V 413572 6974769) has a primary factor of 116m towards the higher parent mountain Stordalstinden (895m). The defining saddle (approx. UTM 32 V 413190 6974917) is found between Blåfjellet and Stordalstinden. Ref. Økonomisk Kartverk (5m contours), the saddle is within the range 745-750m, interpolated to 748m. A GPS reading on top of the cairn (1,5m high) reported 865m as average over a 10-minute period.
An unnamed top, 846,9m ~ 847m on ØK has a primary factor of 24m towards Trolltindan.
Trolltindan (Norge 1:50,000: 887m, Økonomisk Kartverk: 890,5m ~ 891m, UTM 32 V 411723 6975030) has a primary factor of 73m towards the higher parent mountain Stordalstinden (895m). The defining saddle (approx. UTM 32 V 412235 6974911) is found between point 847m and Stordalstinden. Ref. Økonomisk Kartverk (5m contours), the saddle is within the range 815-820m, interpolated to 818m. A GPS reading on top of the cairn (1,5m high) reported 892m as average over a 5-minute period.
Tverrfjellet (Norge 1:50,000: 832m, Økonomisk Kartverk: 835m, UTM 32 V 411048 6975148) has a primary factor of 62m towards the higher parent mountain Trolltindan (891m). The defining saddle (approx. UTM 32 V 411406 6974869) is found between Tverrfjellet and Trolltindan. Ref. Økonomisk Kartverk (5m contours), the saddle is within the range 770-775m, interpolated to 773m. A GPS reading on the ground reported 836m as average over a 5-minute period.
Google's interactive map. You can zoom, pan and click on the markers.
Notes: Class ratings are in reference to YDS. Click here for more information.
The trails described below are not necessarily the *easiest* trails to this mountain.
Route 1: Trollkyrkja, Sandnestindan (summer)
(all distances are approx. distances)
From the city of Molde, follow highway E39 eastbound to the "Eide/Elnesvågen" junction (4,1Km from the roundabout near the Vestnes-Molde ferry). Turn left and follow RV64, drive through the Tussen tunnel and pay toll on the other side (NOK 15,- for passenger cars per May 2008) and continue to Sylteosen (11,6Km) where you turn right in the "Bud/Eide/Elnesvågen" junction. Drive 3,9Km on highway RV64 and find the Trollkyrkja trailhead and parking (signed) on your left-hand side. You will also find an information board here.
Follow the forest road 300m, then turn right (signed). After 140m, make another right turn. Walk 100m along the river before crossing it on a bridge. 450m ahead, the forest road ends. Two trails fork. They all head in the same direction, but follow the one to the right, which has a bridge across a muddy area.
The forest trail is well worn and easy to follow. After a while, the trail runs close to the Trolldalselva river. Follow the trail up to the first Trollkyrkja grotto at 484m elevation. Maps may be available in a mailbox outside the grotto.
The first Trollkyrkja grotto
A flashlight is needed inside the grotto. Once inside, you'll notice a running creek. The inside of the grotto has both "tower rooms" and low-clearance passages. No need for crawling just yet. Eventually, you'll reach the waterfall. The view is partly obscured. If you want to enter the pool, you need tall rubber boots. Return the same way you came, or crawl up a narrow tunnel from the pool. This tunnel takes you directly up to the second cave.
The second Trollkyrkja grotto
To enter this grotto, you have to climb down a ladder. You immediately enter the "main hall" where a spectacular waterfall dominates the room. Daylight comes into the roof, and a flashlight is not needed here.
The third Trollkyrkja grotto
No information available about this one. Join the crowds wandering about on the plateau, looking for it.
Head eastbound (off-trail). You cross a ridge before you get Blåfjellet in view. Follow the grassy pitches to avoid the boulder. Once you are on the upper ridge, you'll probably see a faint path. Blåfjellet summit is marked by a proper cairn.
From Stordalstinden, you'll pass a small hump (847m) before you get to the pass that marks the beginning of the Trolltindan ridge. You bypass the first cliffs by going left and then back onto the ridge. Higher up, you'll bypass an obstacle by going around on the right-hand side. Another obstacle immediately follows. The normal route is to bypass this to the left (you descend next to a very distinct rock feature). The route up to the high point (which is marked by a proper cairn) is trivial. Once on the high point, consider stopping by Bryntinden, just north of the high point.
The descent from Trolltindan is quite spectacular. Make sure you follow the path, otherwise you'll quickly end up in airy terrain. The terrain is very rugged down in the saddle, but you can get by on either side. The top of the ridge is simply too cumbersome. The route up to Tverrfjellet is trivial. There is no cairn on Tverrfjellet's high point.
Descend (off-trail) southbound from Tverrfjellet and pick a route that will take you down to the Trolldalsvatna lakes and Trollkyrkja. If you aim for the lakes too early, you'll enter steep terrain.