Along with Trolltinden (Brustinden), Ytstetinden and Remmemstinden form a wild mountain massif north of highway E39, on the north side of Skorgedalen valley. The three mountains connect through sharp and exposed aretes, where rope for safety should be used. Trolltinden also connects to Middagsfjellet/Sandfjellet through an airy ridge, and a traverse across all four peaks is certainly one of the many fine, challenging routes on Sunnmøre.
Trolltinden, Ytstetinden and Remmemstinden have different trailheads. Trolltinden is normally ascended from Skorgedalen via Skarsegga (the ridge between Middagsfjellet/Sandfjellet and Trolltinden). Ytstetinden is normally ascended from Vik or Flate, both routes passing via Båtreset. Another known route to Ytstetinden is from Tomra via Lake Nedste Trollvatnet. The easiest route runs from Skorgedalen through cumbersome bush, but there are also routes from the north side. Some are airy and some need a rope. This web-page will describe a straightforward, yet cumbersome, approach to Ytstetinden and Remmemstinden from Skorgedalen. I will emphasize that this route is only of interest to those who like to travel outside the "established routes".
These mountains are true landmarks on Sunnmøre. Seen from the Ålesund region, Trolltinden and Sprovstinden form a mighty gateway towards Romsdalsfjorden. And Ytstetinden looks very characteristic and dominating when seen from the north. The views are astounding. Trolltinden offers a panorama of peaks from Kristiansund in the north to Ålesund in the south. All the essential Sunnmøre mountains, with exception of the Volda mountains can be seen from here. Ytstetinden and Remmemstinden offer equal views, except for that the higher neighbour may block some of the view.
Ytstetinden (M711: 1162m, Ø.K.: 1162,16m, UTM 32 V 396865 6940134) has a primary factor of 152m towards the higher parent mountain Trolltinden (1170m). The defining saddle is found between the two tops. Ref. the M711 map (20m contours), the saddle is within the range 1001-1020m, interpolated to 1010m.
Remmemstinden (M711: 1090m, Ø.K.: -, UTM 32 V 398247 6940101) has a primary factor of 220m towards the higher parent mountain Ytstetinden (1162m) The defining saddle is found between the two tops. Ref. the M711 map (20m contours), the saddle is within the range 861-880m, interpolated to 870m.
Averaging over a period of 10 minutes, my GPS reported 1173m on Ytstetinden (on the highest snow point) and 1099m (on the ground) on Remmemstinden.
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.
This route is not suited for those who enjoy a smooth and easy ski-trip to the top of a mountain.
Skorgedalen - Ytstetinden - Remmemstinden (spring)
From Ålesund, follow highway E136->E39 towards Åndalsnes. From the E136/E39/Olsvika roundabout near Breivka, follow E39 37,8Km to the Ørskog/Vestnes border on top of Ørskogfjellet. Continue along E39 4,3Km into Skorgedalen. Find parking on the right-hand side of the road, 100m before the westernmost stream from Ellingsgardsbotnen.
I may be wrong, but I believe Ytstetinden's south side (facing Skorgedalen) is avalanche prone in winter. This is why I have classified this route as "spring route". There is no path and there is no free ride. Just head upwards, maintain a straight line towards Ytstetinden, and work hard for the fine moment you'll get on top.
The lower birch forest is very easy. Higher up, you may follow open space created by avalanches. It depends on your line upwards. When the terrain gets steeper, the bush get convenient for handholds. Note that it never gets very steep, airy or exposed. An ice-axe will come in handy, for several reasons. If you're used to using one, that is.
The worst part is from 450 to 650m elevation. The low birch, stretching for the sun (southbound, natually), is like a web. Once above this part, you ascend Ytstetinden on snow or on boulder. Ytstetinden summit is marked by a fine cairn, holding the summit logbook in a box.
Pick a route towards Remmemstinden that you are comfortable with. You can follow the southeast ridge, avoiding to backtrack your ascending steps. The hike up to Remmemstinden is trivial. The summit is marked by a spectacular cairn, rebuilt in 2002.
Descend your ascent route.
May 17th. The Norwegian National Day. On this day, I have a tradition of getting "out of town" before the crowds gather and occupy the streets. This is the Children's day. My call is to go to the mountains and return when things "settle". For this trip report, I checked the hiking logs from the previous years. In 2005, I visited some anonymous hills in Romarheimsdalen, Hordaland. In 2004, I was standing on the highest mountain on Greenland. In 2003, I visited Skarpefjellsnakken, a dominating mountain in Masfjorden, Hordaland. In 2002, I was on my way to Jotunheimen for a wonderful 3-day trip in the mountains near Galdhøpiggen. In 2001 and 2000, there is a void in my hiking log, as I was abroad on the job. In 1999, I explored the Gullfjellet massif outside Bergen. In 1998, I visited Raulandsfjellet in Telemark, and in 1997 I visited Norefjell. Yes, I've established a pattern for being in the mountains on the National Day.
The skiing season was certainly coming to an end. At least for mountains in the 1000m range. As I wanted to bring along my dog "Troll", I decided to find a splendid mountain that I could bring him on. After going back and forth on the map, the choice fell on Ytstetinden. I was on my way towards Vestnes with the car fully loaded with skis, snowshoes, hiking boots. The works. I was ready for everything. The amount of snow would decide. As I passed through Skorgedalen valley, I noticed that the snowline was at (roughly) 700m. There would be more snow on the north side, and I thought to myself - why not just head up here? It was fairly obvious that I would have a close encounter with bush, but what of it?
The Sunnmøre region was blessed with fine weather on this day. Not only was it a fine day. It was a hot day too. I mounted Troll in the backpack, along with the ice-axe, crampons and winter clothes. I had even brought along nuts (food) and water. We headed out 10:30AM. Ytstetinden, here we come!
A good old mountain "trick" came to use. My ultra-thin gloves worked perfectly for wiping the sweat away. Don't you just hate it when your sunglasses gets all dirty from the sweat? And I was sweating a lot on the way upwards. At approx. 450m, I had to deal with evil birch, coming at me like a dragon, defending the castle. Once I passed this section, 200 vertical meters higher, I ran into rotten snow. Tremendously rotten snow. Every step was a game of chance. Would it hold. Damned! It didn't.
I approached Ytstetinden's south side head on. It looked steep, but it wasn't. Only on hard snow, I might have been concerned about sliding down. And on good snow, skiing would be very fun down this side. The snow got gradually more firm, but every step gave way. Which was extremely tiresome. I had to let Troll out of the backpack, and he ascended the final 300 vertical meters on his own. He did a tremendous job, given the soft snow.
But legwork pay off, and 12:45PM, we were standing on the summit. I looked down towards the north side and noticed a skier on his way up. He arrived 15 minutes later, and I had completed the pictures by then. Troll had been given water and lunch. The skier's name was Håkon, and we had a nice chat. He was surprised about how far he had to carry his skis. We discussed the views, and then Håkon asked if my name was Arnt and if I had a web-site. I confirmed, slightly uplifted from being "recognized" after living only 4 months in Sunnmøre.
It wasn't so warm on the summit. I had to put on the gore-tex jacket and extra wind-trousers. Still, I was cold and decided to move on. My leather boots were soaked, and my feet were cold. I had a desire to move on to a warmer elevation and decided to descend Ytstetinden's south side on my butt. This went well. On soft snow, snow piles up quickly, and I descended on "a thrown" in fast pace with Troll in the backpack. I descended from 1162m to 720m in 14 minutes. I ran an "equipment check" once down. Troll had the "what did I ever do to you?" face, and my pocket camera was all wet.
I was soaking wet, but not cold anymore. Decision time. Should I include Remmemstinden on my hike? I looked at the time. It was still early in the day, and one more summit would taste just fine. The slope up to the summit didn't look long, but I knew that looks couldn't be trusted. I took a small detour to find a route that had some naked rock. I let Troll out of the backpack at 750m elevation, and he ascended Remmemstinden on foot.
We reached the top 14:30PM and Troll was clearly tired. The soft snow had been tough on him, but he followed me loyally up the mountain. It's strange. Once past a certain elevation, he change from self-preservation to loyalty. Always. Perhaps he thinks that "we're so high on the mountain, that I can't make it down by myself..". Who knows. I was visitor #3 in 2006. One came by 29/4 and the second 7/5. This is clearly not a frequently visited summit during winter!
I treated myself with another zip of water, and shared the nut-mix with Troll. I regretted this very much the next day, when Troll ran around the house, leaving brown nuts everywhere. I was still impressed with the dog, considering the hard 3-hour walk he had the evening before. After a pause on top, it was time to head down. We more or less descended our ascent route (Troll still walking) to the birch forest. I carried him across the bush jungle on top, but let him out once past this. The forest was still big for him, but he had this "yes! car within reach" attitude and kept a good pace down the forest. We were back at the car 15:45PM after more than 5 hours on the mountain.
Note: Apologies for the poor picture quality. My camera was at the repair shop, and I had to bring along the 4-year old Nikon Coolpix 4500.
360 deg. wide-angle panorama from Ytstetinden
Zoom panoramas from Ytstetinden, two parts
Wide-angle panoramas from the summit, 2 parts, + 1 zoom, not annotated
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