Well, the weather broke. It’s been a warm and wet day. Not the kind of thing we wanted to see.
Despite this, the 3 guys got up very early hoping to do some climbing before I’d start to rain mid-day. They walked towards one of the lines behind our hut (but further north than the previous days).
Unfortunately, the line wasn’t suitable wasn’t in a condition suitable for a safe ascent, so as we observed them from the living room window they descended and returned home.
It was clear to us then that today wasn’t going to be a climbing day, so we decided to just go out and explore some of the areas further north and scout possible lines we looked up online (it’s rare you find any information for areas here anyway).
We drove north up 868 rode via Kvalvik, stopping by the road and looking up all the routes along the way. The selection is quite good, however, most of them are quite high up the mountain, and usually have a serious amount of snow above – a big no-no in current conditions.
We continued up north through Lyngseidet (where you can catch the ferry to the other side of the Lyngen fjord, to Olderdalen).
Fun fact – a drive across the fjord from is a long Lyngseidet to Olderdalen (which you can easily see!) is a long 128km, and would take 2 hours drive. A ferry is just a 40minutes affair. No wonder it was busy!
Either way, we continued North-East towards Rottenvik, where we wanted to find Rottenvikfossen line.
We followed the rough description we found on UKC, which took us to a parking spot (69°36’13.2″N 20°15’53.4″E), where we met many cross country skiers. Seems like a popular spot for this kind of thing
The path is quite clear – you just go north thru the woods, roughly following the trail, and then look out for ice on the left hand side (after around 1.2km).
At first, we found a couple of short and weak-looking lines, located higher up on the mountain, probably not worth doing.
We moved a bit further and spotted what looked like the line we were after: Rottenvikfossen
It doesn’t look to be in the best nic, but if the conditions won’t improve (and it doesn’t look like they will), it will have to do – it’s likely we’ll get back there tomorrow or the day after.
Upon returning to the car, we drove back south, stopping a few times to look at the views. The fjord, the architecture, the mountains. It’s all really unique and amazing.
The whole hunting subject is quite interesting. I always seen it as a ‘rich man’s sport’, but in Norway it’s quite different – the activity is highly regulated and part of their culture and heritage – I think this article explains the topic quite well.
Anyway, we drove past our hut, further south towards the tunnel near Lyngspollen to check out routes on that side. We were previously informed by the locals (and also read online), that routes in that area wouldn’t be a good bet at this time of the year, due to avalanche danger (there is a reason that 3km tunnel is there – as the old road used to be buried in avalanche debris all the time).
Either way, these routes are a much safer bet to do earlier in the season. It’s one of the trade-offs – some lines are just not safe late in the season, but a fair game earlier on. This however has a downside on its own – shorter days and much colder temperatures and often thinner ice.
From there we drove 5 more kilometers south towards the next location we knew about: Furuflaten. There are a number of lines above that village, but they were likely to also suffer from high avalanche danger due to the snow accumulation above.
The selection is amazing – however, their location is dangerous. Each of these lines is a serious undertaking – you’d want the condition to be just perfect. I think we’ll have to leave them for another time (as it seems that temperatures wont drop below 0C this week again).
There is another line further down to the left in that area, a 100m WI4 called Lyngsdalsfossen, which we went to have a look at as well (from distance). The approach seems long but not impossible. Seems like a full-on adventure too. Doubt we’ll get the conditions for it though :/
As I mentioned earlier, the forecast doesn’t look amazing for the remaining 3 days we have. Hopefully, we’ll still get to climb something. But even if not, we’ll go snowshoeing and explore the area more – there are plenty of places to see here!