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Start of six days of cross-country skiing
We prefer not to specify in advance where we will ski each day. This is to enhance the flexibility and adapt to weather and snow conditions and to some extent the ability of each group. Six days cross-country skiing, exploring the vast and varied terrain accessible from our accommodation on Hovden Island. Starting out across the lake, the possibilities are endless, with hills and valleys offering delightful skiing both below and above the tree line.
Tour to Dalstudden
When choosing routes, the leader's priority will be to take in a variety of scenery and to ensure that participants become better and more confident skiers as the week progresses. However, below are examples of some of the best local routes. Today's tour takes us to the hills and valleys under Kvamsfjellet, where the undulating terrain provides for some delightful skiing. Crossing north east, about 1km, over Mosvatn to the farm of Fornes, a settlement dating back to the Middle Ages, we ski north west and up into a valley with a string of small tarns, past some huts towards Gardar. The track then takes us up a steep and narrow incline on to the hills above the lake of Store Hovstjorni. Keeping on the hills to the west, we ski to the northern end of the lake. Here with some spectacular views, looking down on to the farms and settlements spread out along the shores of Mosvatn, we take a break. Keeping to the east of Hovstjorni, under the steep cliffs of Kvamsfjellet, we then head due south into Dalstauldalen but skiing along the undulating ridges on the west side of the valley. At the lower end of Dalstauldalen we turn west and return to Hovdeoyi and the lodge via Fornes.
Tour to Laksanuten
Skiing due west from the lodge, and crossing 300 metres of lake to the mainland, this tour takes us up to our nearest top, Laksanuten, 1,353 m. Taking a small trail through the woods on Vaddodden, we continue west above the Laksai stream, then turning south, gradually climbing above the treeline to reach the col above the tarn of Tippetorn. From here we take the ridge north west with a final steep ascent to the first of the two tops on Laksanuten. Crossing to the main top takes another 15 mins. and depending on conditions, we take a break here. There are fine views over the Hardangervidda and east to the impressive mount Gausta. This is also a point where, if we are lucky, we may also see reindeer. The route off the top gives a wonderful descent into the upper Komdalen valley and from here we again make an easy climb to the highest point on Himmelsynnettane, 1,260m, under the imposing cliffs of Eggeskardnuten. The descent takes us down to the tarn, Eggetjorni and initially follows the Astaul stream before we turn north east for the final descent to Mosvatn. This is a wonderful 3km long downhill run! Crossing the 1km. of lake to the island of Mellomoyi, we return to Hovden and the lodge.
Tour to Tjorndalen
This trip takes us into the high wilderness above vestre Skindalen, an area of deep gorges, vertical rock faces and classic steep sided hanging valleys. Over Hovdeoyi to the north west, we descend off the island and make a short crossing of Mosvatn. Then ascending through open woods, over marshes and rounded hills we reach an open area known as Laksabotn. This is where Vonskinai drains the Vonskingjuvet Gorge. We make tracks south into the gorge and then traverse up the ridge on its west side. Here, the scenery is quite impressive. Turning north west again, we climb in under Magnusgronutan, a steep sided mountain on our right and onwards into the valley of Tjorndalen - 'Tarn valley'. Following a string of tarns, we make tracks deeper into this steep sided valley where, provided there are suitable conditions, we take a break. Continuing north west, the valley suddenly opens out high above the Skinndalen valley and we see vertical rock faces in every direction. High above us is the Skinfjell Mountain and across the valley, the isolated Skindalen farm, where Anne lives with her four cows. We return the same way, with a long descent, this time looking directly into the gorge, down to Laksatjorn but this time reaching Hovden and the lodge via a route through the woods above Vaddodden.
Tours similar to previous days
For the next two days we will continue to tour the surrounding area.
Tours similar to previous days
Final day of skiing.