Trollstigen and Reinheimen National Park, Norway Week 66 5th - 6th August 2012
Sunday in Andalsnes.

Not a lot open, and not a lot of traffic.

The camping grounds looked full with permanent caravans, tents, and cabins.

Getting really touristy, one caravan park was called a resort.

We've also seen tour buses.

So we headed up the Trollstigen.

We let the Finnish motorhome and a couple of cars go by.

The Klovstein is the old packhorse trail dating from the 18th century. Still walkable.

The road was built with eleven hairpins around 1936.

There's a bridge about halfway up.

One of those bridges that looks "just right" to us and naturally belongs.

Is it my imagination or is the curve an ellipse? It looks as elegant as the bridge near Victoria Falls between Zambia and Zimbabwe. Just stone rather than steel.

The tour buses cross it therefore it should be ok for us!

Not too steep. A steady slog in 3rd gear, sometimes 4th.
Someone must have wondered about the stability of the slope!
From above.

That's a tour bus just crossed the bridge.

We were last here in 1997 with Jennifer and Rachael.

The platform didn't exist.

The sides are 19mm steel plate. Round the corner the front is glass. And the floor is steel grill to see through.

We didn't feel safe.

The cafe and souvenir shop had just opened in June 2012. Still free!

We camped a few km past the top at Slettvikane.

Reinheimen National Park was created in 2006.

We are climbing up the track to Berill. Just past the steep bit over boulders.

On the other side of the road is Langjelldalen. There's a walking track through it.

We weren't too sure what to expect. The maps at track entrances have contours but the mountains are so steep its difficult to interpret.

But as long as the sun shines and there are track markers we are happy. 

We think we'll stop at the saddle.

Just a peak over the other side maybe!

We're a bit wary of the snow as there's no run out.

Once sliding it may be hard to stop and walking poles don't make good ice axes.

Even up here there are flowers.

Haven't seen one of these before.

Over the saddle is a largish cwm. This is the far side.
And looking down the lake is partly frozen.

The track descends on the right and follows the edge of the lake around the corner.

Press the right buttons, race over the rocks in less than 10 seconds, smile, and voila!

The intrepid duo trying not to look worn out.

Looking across to Langfjelldalen again as we begin our descent.
We've seen lots of these.

They are a bit shorter stemmed here.

And down to road level again.
A quick look back.

The track goes through the rock slope to the left of the river.

Next morning was clear so we got up early and drove back to the top of Trollstigen to see if the valley was cloud free.
A quick look at where we camped at Slettvikane, the top of the road is behind.
And that cloud bank is filling the valley that Trollstigen rises from.
We've seen a few interesting approaches to free camping.

This motorhomer had removed registration plates, parked in the invalid parking space, and hooked power up through the manhole cover near the rear wheel.

Sadly we've also seen washing clothes in pristine rivers and a few other not so nice habits.

Nicely though litter is in bins or taken away where it belongs.

The bank of cloud was stubborn.

We waited awhile, tried to blow it away, called on the trolls to help, but it was stubborn so we set off south.

A last glimpse of something we remembered from last time.

Troll gardens.

To us they are a lasting part of the memory. Perhaps more so than the road. Alas, the cafe seems to have been planted instead. Some remain beside the concrete and steel paths.

Despite having stiff muscles and joints we decided to take advantage of the weather and walk into Steindalsstolen.

A NOK20 toll for this road was something we hadn't expected.

It wasn't far and the car park at the end was big enough for us.
We had a choice of "easy" or "hard". 

We decided "easy".

After a steep uphill we were rewarded looking back.

The main road is around the corner. This valley contains the toll road.

A few fishing huts.
Looking back the valley is a steady incline.
Looking back again.

A bit like walking up a banana, up and to the right.

We've seen small bells for sale in the souvenir shops.

These are their larger parents.

They don't have legs so attach themselves to sheep.

When they hear us coming the make a ringing noise which startles the sheep who then run away, carrying the bells to safety.

This cairn is late 20th century built by homo erectus.

As we climbed higher the imprints of sheep hooves were replaced by those of the muddy booted hiker.

There's a hut over there. Tjonnebu.

Its maintained by the Norwegian Mountain Club.

Beyond the hut the track climbs some more.
We walked to the hut before returning.
A bit plush after the spartan New Zealand huts we are used to.

A tad more expensive as well.

Free to members. We think A$50 each per night for us.

In the collection of info we did spot the Norwegian equivalent of Moir's guide, the New Zealand anthology of most of the walking tracks that was our staple for so long. Sadly, for us, the Norwegian guide is in Norwegian - but at least now we know it exists.

And we saw the plushest long drop we've ever seen.
Looking where we came from we anticipate a slow return.

Its taken us 4 hours to reach here and we are tired.

After yesterday's steep climb we think we have overdone the exercise thing.

The lake is partly frozen.

Not too tired for a "we wuz here".

Hopefully we'll never lose that special feeling we have in places like this.

After the poor weather this has lifted our spirits.

Now all we have to do is walk back to Tardis!

The sun stayed out, the air is clear, the mountains are magic.
If it looks like a long way back it is.
But eventually there it is.

Somewhere down there is a truck, and a cup of tea. We'll return to last night's camp as we are tired after more than 7 hours walking.

Next on to Geiranger then south past Josedalsbreen to hopefully see a glacier, thence to Oslo then Kristiansand.

We have a plan to be back at Tim and Angela's in 11 days on the 18th August.

Sognefjell, Oslo and Kristiansund, Norway Week 67 7th - 13th August 2012

Laurie Sun, 19 Aug 12 19:45:28 +1000
Who's the long-bearded guy in the photos with Ali?
(Mein Gott, you lot are fit!)

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