Tucked away between the Livarden and Byfjellene massifs, just above lake Grimevatnet, you will find a mountain plateau consisting of a series of ridges. The high point on this plateau is known as Skardalsfjellet. The other ridges also have names; Flåfjellet, Brattlandsfjellet and Stordalsfjellet.
Hiking these hills can be a bit annoying due to bad trails and dense bush. After the 2004 forest fire, moving around on the high plateau is somewhat easier. The prominent view is the panorama from Møsnuken by Os to Ulriken and the Byfjellene massif.
It is not likely that you will meet other hikers up here, so if you want an afternoon hike in solitaire, Skardalsfjellet is an option. The high point is on Skardalsfjellet, while Flåfjellet (418m) has a marker (red & white concrete) and the best views.
Skardalsfjellet (421m) has a primary factor of 158m towards the higher Livarden (683m). The saddle is found in Furedalen valley between Skardalsfjellet and Totlandsfjellet. Ref. Økonomisk Karverk (5m contours), you cross the 265m contours on the high route, but not 260m. The saddle height has been interpolated to 263m.
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.
Brattland - Skardalsfjellet - Flåfjellet (summer)
From Bergen, follow highway 580 from Midtun towards Indre Arna. Near Brattland, you cross between lakes Søylevatnet and Grimevatnet, and then follows a sharp righthand curve. 200m later, you see a bus stop on your right (there is also a bus stop on your left). Find parking by the bus stop on your right hand side (but don't block for the bus). Alternatively, continue 60m and turn out left onto a gravel road (towards Søylen) and find parking there.
A distinct forest trail runs from the bus stop up to lake Furedalsvatnet. Parts of this trail is nature rail (runs across slabs), but the direction should be obvious. Just before the lake, you will have to cross the drain from the lake. A short jump is required. A certain concentration is called for if the rocks are wet, but the crossing is fairly unproblematic.
The trail continues on the northwest shore of the lake. Look for a vague path that runs up a ridge up to your right. After rain, this path is a creek. On top of this ridge (approx. 270m elev.) the path turns southwest. Ahead of you is a forest hill. The path will bypass this forest hill to the left.
Above 320m elevation, chances are that the path disappears. But you're now following a long ridge, so just stick to it. You will see traces of the path here and here. At 360m, it's time to move up to the high ridge (on your right). Find a good route between the burnt (anno 2004) bush if you're not able to follow the path. You're now on a ridge known as Skavdalsfjellet. Ahead of you is Skardalsfjellet, and further southwest - Flåfjellet. You will see the Flåfjellet marker from Skavdalsfjellet.
Continue on the high ridge to Skardalsfjellet and follow small cairns towards Flåfjellet. The task for the day is to determine which of the Skardalsfjellet humps is the high point. From this statement you may deduct that the high point is not marked by a cairn.
Descend your ascent route or continue across Stordalsfjellet and descend into the southwest end of Furedalen valley. A vague path runs in the valley and you rejoin your ascent route at the north end of the lake.
Trip Report Sep 21 2004
I needed a variation to the usual evening hikes to Ulriken. I hadn't been to Skardalsfjellet since 1999. I had a failed attempt in March 2002, but lost the path and got tired of the deep and rotten snow. We (me and Troll) left the trailhead 17:10PM. What used to be a perfectly good forest trail was now a perfectly good forest stream, and Troll did a sudden halt after 200m. Sometimes it helps to give him a friendly push. So I did. No response. One more push. Troll then paid my boot the same courtesy as he does to a tasty fried chicken. Sorry, ol' chap. Had to check.
With my hiking mate well established in the backpack, I moved on. The stream from lake Furedalsvatnet could now be called a river. It had been raining more or less non-stop for the last two weeks, and now I could see the results. Once I had crossed the river, the trail disappeared into the lake. The vague forest path up the ridge was quite annoying. One wrong step and I had water halfway up to the knee.
Higher in the forest, things got better. I lost the trail somewhere on a long ridge, and while trying to shortcut up to the high ridge, I had to fight burnt bush. The soot from the spring fire was still fresh, and I looked more like a chimney sweeper than a hiker by the time I reached Skardalsfjellet. We reached the Flåfjellet summit 18:30PM. I took a round of pictures and enjoyed the scenery, only bugged by the vain whining from Troll, obviously missing his summit lunch-box. I gave him the "what? from 200m walking!" look, and he seemed to quiet down.
On top, I did a silly blunder, which leads to corrective action for future hikes. My GPS batteries were flat, so I took them out and put them in the backpack pocket. Then I reached into the same pocket to pull out the pack of spare batteries. This normally works well, except when it has been raining on the recent hikes. The pack was dissolved, and I had 8 free-floating batteries in the pocket. Of course, they were all of the same type. I normally carry the batteries in plastic bags, but had obviously made an exception. On a small hill like this, it didn't matter. I just wanted the tracks of the hike. In a more serious situation, this would have been problematic. Moral: ALWAYS keep your batteries in plastic bags.
We took the same route down. The rainshowers sweeping the neighbourhood finally reached Skardalsfjellet, but I didn't mind. It's amazing what you get used to after weeks of rain. We were back at the car 19:30PM, 1 hour after we reached Flåfjellet summit.
Pictures from the Sep 21 2004 hike
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