Approaching Rondvassbu hytte in Rondane National Park
It’s been a very dry and sunny summer in Norway, which means a struggle for farmers but enjoyable outdoors adventures for the rest of us. The first weekend of summer mountain getaways began with torrential rain and ended with three days of practically perfect summer weather. This four-day tour of Rondane was a little different than normal because it was a training event for TJ and regular hiking for me. We slept in the same place each night but approached our final destination by different methods. TJ carried his new running pack in prep for Tromsø Skyrace and I strolled along with a fairly empty pack.
It was truly four days of splendid weather, despite the rain that soaked through my shoes on day one. The wind on day two from Rondvassbu to Bjørnhollia was nearly non-existent. Both of us started the day early and it was the right decision – I don’t think I saw anyone else until midday, save for some sheep and birds. It was so quiet I could here the flapping of the crow’s wings as it flew over me. The baby birds chattered away and disguised themselves in the rocks or floated along in the sky-blue lakes along Illmanndalen below Storronden, where TJ was running many meters above me. After the hustle and bustle of humanity at Rondvassbu the peace and quiet was a welcome relief. Below is an overview of our where we ended our days. The hike from Bjørnhollia to Eldåbu is listed as 6 hours and from Eldåbu to Mysuseter 8 hours. Add one hour and you get my normal pace: I stop often to take photos. I won’t tell you how little time it took TJ to reach the same destinations or how many more kilometers he travelled. Map courtesy of ut.no.
We’ve explored this part of Rondane before and we travelled new ground on the journey from Eldåbu to the parking lot (from 3-4 on the map). I saw five people on the trail, one of which was TJ, and two of which I only saw in the distance. This is one of the reasons we enjoy this bit of Norway: It’s nice to take a break from real life and just put one foot in front of the other. The landscape is impressive, full of vivid colours and textures. It’s a reminder that we really are just visitors on this lovely planet and we should do our best to protect it from ourselves. (Smiubelgen mountains, Rondane)
We met very nice people along the way and ate good food in the serviced cabins, but we like life better at the self-serve cabins. It was a good way to safely experiment with days together and days apart in a setting we knew. I’d like to fill the empty space in my pack with our tent on our next adventure. (Sunset at Eldåbu)