Monday, 22 August 2011


After walking back to the car from Rostahytte, we did some shopping in Øverbygd and had an extended and lazy late lunch on the beach at Fjellfroskvatnet on what must have been one of this year's hottest days. We started walking towards Hattavarra around 16:00 h and the first couple of kilometers up the valley were still very warm, but fortunately the track followed a river that provided us with regular and much appreciated refreshment. Higher up a flock of reindeer was trying to cool down by standing in a snow field. But we got to the top in good time and the views were excellent in all directions. A beautiful walk.

our route

A well used track leads up the valley.

View to the west from halfway up.

Reindeer cooling down in the snow.

A solid block field with good trail markings.

View to the NE from the top.

View to the west from the top.

A good snow field made the descent a little faster.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

From Kilpis to Rostadalen #2

Day 3, from Gappohytte to Rostahytte, was probably the highlight of the trip with the most variety in landscapes, and many flowers and birds. 

Finnish fisherman showing off a freshly caught trout.

rock hopping across a river

Alpine catchfly, Lychnis alpina

Cottongrass, Eriophorum

broad glacial valleys

Swedish-Norwegian border: back in Norway after a short section through Sweden.

lunch break

Very rocky the last few hundred meters to the pass at around 1000 m altitude.

Beautiful green valley, which reminded me of Mongolia, just without the gers, horses and yaks.

Rosta hyttene

Moor-king, Pedicularis sceptrum-carolinum

Rosta hyttene: we slept in the 'new' hut on the right. The large hut on the left is the Jubileum hut, built only a few years ago, and the hut furthest away is the old hut; the fourth building is the woodshed/toilet.

On day 4, our friends headed towards Pältsa hytte in Sweden while we walked through Rostadalen back to our car that we had left there 4 days earlier. We had a look at the river on our way down, but there is a lot of white water, more difficult than we are able to packraft at the moment.


Tony walking through a field of Alpine sow-thistle, Cicerbita alpina.

Friday, 19 August 2011

From Kilpis to Rostadalen #1

It is nice to get visitors, and even better if the weather is good so we can show off the beautiful country we live in. And this summer the weather has been excellent, a nice change after the very wet and cold summer in 2010. At the end of July we joined our visitors for a 3.5 day walk from the Finnish border near Kilpisjärvi to Rostadalen, staying in the Troms Turlag huts Goldahytte, Gappohytte and Rostahytte along the way. It wasn't particularly busy and at both Golda and Rosta we had one of the huts for ourselves. During the day we didn't see anyone else. It was easy walking in nice warm and sunny weather, sometimes even hot!, and the mosquitos were only really annoying around Goldahytte. I can't believe how many lemmings we have seen, they were everywhere, dead or alive, it really is a lemming year! But there was also quite some birdlife in the mountains: above the tree line mostly water and wading birds, golden plovers, ringed plovers, arctic skuas, ruffs, but also golden eagles; lots of small birds in the forests, of which the bluethroat was one of the less common ones. 

We have mostly been in these areas in winter as summers are often occupied with fieldwork in the coastal areas. In the winter it is magic here, a quiet snow covered landscape and cosy huts. But it is also stunningly beautiful in summer and this trip was a good reminder that we really should spend more time exploring these areas in summer too.

our route

Start of the trail from the road near Kilpisjärvi.

an old (dog)sled

the first day's highest point

Mining relics of old copper mines.

beautiful weather

Lots of golden plovers on the mountains.

Goldahytte is very close (3 km) from the triple country point where Finland, Sweden and Norway meet and we had never been there. So at the end of day one, after having our dinner in the hut, Tony and I made a little side trip and walked along the lake to the triplepoint and visited both Sweden and Finland.

The triplepoint: we are standing in Sweden, Finland is straight ahead, and Norway to the left.

A stoat was living in the wood shed at Goldahytte.

The second day, walking to Gappohytte.

Major river valleys cutting through the side of the mountain.


Gappohytte is right next to the border with Sweden. Note the red crosses marking the winter route in Sweden, it is impossible to get lost there. Fortunately there are no such markings in Norway.

The Gappo huts, the old hut to the left, new hut in the middle, and woodshed/toilet to the right.

Thursday, 11 August 2011

BBQ in Ersfjorden

An afternoon in Ersfjorden with kayak and packrafts and a slightly chilly BBQ with freshly picked cloudberries. It is clearly a lemming year and the lemmings were running around our feet when we were eating our dinner, we have never seen anything like it.

Heading out from Ersfjordbotn

BBQ in lemming territory

 Impressive mountains around Ersfjorden

Happy visitors