To Pedaler På Tur
Et nettsted om sykkelferie først og fremst

Hello World!

Cycling central Norway means cycling several of the highest mountain crossings in Norway, including Jotunheimen. The destination was the same as last year, when I cycled the shortest way on the main roads with racing bike an no bags. That route was 410 km. This years route was approx 500 km, and my goal was to do the route in 7 days. The weather forecast was looking good for almost the hole trip. It is worth mentioning that TheGuardian in 2007, had Jotunheimen on fifth place of the worlds best cycle rotes in the world.

Day One

Starting just southwest of Trondheim i followed the old E39, now called FV800, along the coast. This is my home area, so I cycled here a lot for training. A very nice place to cycle considering very little traffic. Passing som minor villages, as Viggja, were you have a nice camping place called Tråsavika, we arrive at Orkanger. Orkanger is maybe the second biggest town in Sør-Trøndelag with about 10.000 citizens. For those who wants to stay over night here, I recommend Bårdshaug Herregård. I guess that Orkanger is most famous for its river Orkla, which is one of the best rivers for fishing salmon in Norway. Check out touristinformation for more.

From Orkanger I followed FV462 on the west side of the river Orkla. Little traffic. At Fannrem, i followed RV65 further south. At approx 20 km we arrive at Svorkmo. Here I left RV65 and continuing RV700 to Løkken. Løkken is famous for its old mines, which was crucial for the germans during the second world war. Therefore the norwegian resistant did som sabotage actions, once with fatal endings for the resistant. The sabotage action is called "Kampen om Thamshavnbanen", and it is both written books, by the norwegian writer Fredrik Widmark, and made a TV documentaryabout the sabotage actions against the railways.

Cycling further south passing Meldal and a small short named village called Aa (norwegian letter Å). It got Norways shortest name of a village, and is in fact a very small village. Did som refill of water on the local store. The village is a kind of an entrance to the mountain area called Trollheimen.

A few kilometres after Å, I take right, at Grindal, to start the climb against the mountain area. No its the end of paved roads, and start of gravel roads. I guess Grindal is most famous for being the home village of norwegian football player Vegard Heggem, who played for FC Liverpool. The valley I followed from Orkanger to Grindal is mostly farmland. 

Starting the climb, its very steep in the beginning, but after 3-4 kilometers it gets not so steep anymore. Further 15 km the road gets paved again. 26 km from Grindal I wild camped at approx 800 moh.

The weather had been good all day. Todays distance, 99 km, total duration 7 h 50 min. Total climb, 1007 m, average speed, 12,6 km/h. Totally beaten.

Stats from Endomondo.

Day two

Started pretty early in nice weather. Had to fix the derailluer because it wouldn't go up to the biggest wheel in the back. And today I needed all easy gear. The day started with a quite steep climb up to 950 moh to "Skaret". There you got a nice view over "Skarvatnet".  

From "Skaret" ut is mostly downhill to Oppdal. Oppdal is a winter holiday place, and they claim they are the biggest alpine ski are in Norway. It has also hosted the alpine world cup some time ago. Oppdal is surrounded by mountains, and is therefore also a starting point if you are mountain hiking in summer.

From Oppdal I followed E6 south passing Dovrefjell, all the way to Dombås, 80 km further south. E6 is the main highway through Norway. The first 40 km climbs from 550 moh to 1000 moh in faboulous nature to Hjerkinn. The rest 40 km to Dombås is flat and some km with steep downhil. The traffic is not that bad if you travel outside summer season. Approx 35 km from Oppdal you can stop at Kongsvold Fjellstue for cofee or something to eat, or just to see the old buildings. The next place to get something to eat is "Dovregubben", is worth a visit. Both are just open in summer season.

At Dombås I continued west in the direction to "Åndelsnes". Dombås got a train station with direct connection to Oslo. Approx 10 km after Dombås, I turned left and started todays last climb, Slaadalen, and what a climb. Being pretty done after a long day, I had to stop pedaling and use my feet the last km. At just above 1000 moh I found camp place good enough with great view. It was pretty cold, so it was great to wash up and get into dry warm clothes. 

Not the best camp spot I have been. The wind kept me awake most of the night, so I was glad when the morning came.

Todays distance 123 km, duration 10 h 20 min, total ascent 1297 m, avg. speed 11,9 km/h.

 

Stats from Endomondo.

Day three

"Room" with a view. Great morning wake up view.

The day started pretty cold, and rough wind during the night did not make me sleep well. Had an early start with a climb to 1200 moh before it slowly started to decent again. The first village I arriived as I left the mountain, was "Vågå". Last year I had slept at Vågå hotel when i followed the straight line to the same goal with my racing bike.

I continued til Lom. Lom is in the outskirt of Jotunheimen, the biggest mountain area in Norway. Joutunheimen is also where Galdhøpiggen lays, the highest mountain in Norway. You can take a closer look at the official page for Jotunheimen. Had some late lunch in Lom, before starting the ride against Sognefjell. From Lom riding Bøverdalen. A beautiful valley with a river with grey water. The color of the water comes from stones that has been crushed from the glaciers higher up in the mountains.

The road starting easy. The last shopping possibilites before the mountains comes about 20 km after Lom, in "Galdebygda". After that the it started to go uphill.I climbed to 1000 MASL where I found a camp spot close to "Øvre Halsatjønnen". The last kilometers was very steep. 

On my way I also passed "Leirvassdalen",a great valley that goes deep into Jotunheimen. The norwegian nastional tourist roads has some information about the route.

Todays distance 97 km, duration 8 h 21 min, avg. speed 11,6 km/h, total ascent 1031 m.

Stats from Endomondo.

Day four

Waking up early after a good nights sleep. Weather still fantastic, and the mountain had fantastic colour. Eating breakfast out like this is better than any hotel breakfast, for sure. A great start of the day.

I was not really aware of how much uphill this day had. I had not done to much research before crossing Sognefjell, so I was not very familiar with route. The first 5 km started quite easy, before the hills were getting steeper. Passing three mountain hotels in about 10 km, but only the one closest to the top, Krossbu, was open. Clearly it was off season. Lucky med that meant very, I mean very, little traffic. It could not fet more beautiful. The scenery was fantastic. When reaching Krossbu, I also had a great view to "Smørstabb" glacier.

Had to take some short brakes a couple of times on my way to the top. I think I was not quite recovered from last day. It was not that steep. Got some thumbs up from tourist in cars on their way down. At 1434 MASL I reached the highest point of the Sognefjell crossing. After a break to "celebrate" reaching the top, I found it the time for lunch time. A bit early, but always listen to your stomach.

In the summer, Sognefjell is great for cross country skiing. This norwegian page has more information about summer skiing.

About 10 km further, the downhill towards Turtagrø, started. From 1400 metres down to about 900 MASL. Turtagrø is a mountain hotel. You will find info on Wikipedia. The route from now on was unknown, and I was not very happy to se it went uphill again. My next goal was the town Øvre Årdal, only about 35 km away.

The next top was at 1300 MASL. This picture was taken close to the top with a view back to Turtagrø. I mistakenly thought it was downhil to Årdal from here, but of course i had to cross a valley, and climb to 1322 MASL again. But then it went straight down to sea level and Øvre Årdal. I great downhill. To bad I had to go carefully because of bad brakes.

Øvre Årdal is a nice small town with a big aluminum plant. Bought some food at the local store and had a meal on a bench on the town square. Talked to some locals and got som advice on the route further. Had been on the road for about 7 hours, bet it was onlu about 5 o'clock in the afternoon, I decided continue. I had to find a place to wild camp anyway.

I continued on RV 53, also called Tyinvegen, which winds up the hill. Its hard to believe that it is possible to build such a great road on such precipitous mountains. The road mostly used by big trucks with stuff to and from the aluminum plant. But the traffic was slow and rarely, so it was not annoying. Had to take a break at each turn, and I must admit that I had to walk for about 3 km before the uphill flattens at "Holsbruvatnet".

I started to look for camp spots. The daylight was about to disappear as it was almost eight o'clock. Reached 1000 MASL before I found a decent camp spot close to the road. Yes, I was tired. Maybe the coldes evening as well, so I heated water for dinner, and went into my sleeping bag.

Todays lesson: Do not put that much load on the bike on a route with this much ascent.

Todays distance 84 km, duration 9 h 12 min, avg.speed 9,1 km/h, total ascent 2117m.

Stats from Endomondo.

Day five

Ready for the last day. The weather was still on my side, but a cold morning. A quick breakfast, and I was on the road. Just a few kilometres and I reached lake Tyin. Lake Tyin is about 33 square kilometres, laying 1083 MASL. It was a quite morning with very little traffic.

After about 20 km, I started the descent against Tyinkrysset end E16. E16 is av highway that connects Norway east and Norway west. My plan was to follow E16 east towards Vang. Vang is an old town village in Valdres municipality. Its history go far back, and has some points of interest, including viking area. Amongst them, Øye Stave churchSee the tourist-information for the area, covering all day five route.

Had a break at the local gas station at Vang, eating the Norwegian "vaffel" with a coke. Studying maps, I found a route called "Melkeveien. That meant leaving E16, starting the climb on a small gravelled mountain route south. And it got steep, for sure (see graf at about 50 km). Had to get off the bike and use my feet. Met a shepard who was gathering some sheeps. I stopped some of them who was trying to escape. She offered to take some of my luggage up the hill with her car. I politely rejected.

On the top, I reached lake Nordre Syndin. And that was the end of the road. Had to cross a small river. On the other side of the river, it was at wet path for about 1 kilometer. My bike was not built for this terrain, so I was happy reaching the gravel road again. Shortly after I came to Syndinstoga. Did some food shopping and bought coffee and a "vaffel" from Randi. Randi recommended a route further. Took the coffeebrake there, talking to other guest. Syndinstoga closes early october, and do not open until next easter.

I continued south passing both lake "Midtre Syndin" and lake "Søndre Syndin". Had some trouble finding the correct route to Vaset. My GPS didn't find any roads in the area!!! The area is full of cabins with new roads everywhere. At last, I found the correct road that lead to Vaset. Vaset is a small center with shopping possibilities and hotels in the area. In the winter it is great for skiing, both cross country and alpine.

With only 15 km to my destination, I started the last climb. My bike was loaded more than ever because off all the food (and beer) I needed the next couple of days I should spend in the cabin. About 6 km before destination, I stopped and took a bath in a river, changing to clean clothes. Big satisfaction. This was the end of route. The last 6 km went without being registered on the graf below.

Todays distance 92 km, duration 8 h 46 min, avg.speed 10,5 km/h, total ascent 1081 m.

Stats from Endomondo.
 

Evaluation

A fantastic bike tour. Everything was going my way. Sunny weather, beautiful autumn colours in the mountain, wind blowing my way mostly and very little traffic. The route was great, but pretty tough. Maybe because too heavy load on the bike. The spokes on my rear wheel had to be tightened every day, and on day four, a spoke broke. The brakes was not good enough on the steep downhills. I had to go slow because of the that.

I would defintively recommend cycling these route or mountain. 

Se alle bilder fra turen i albumet.

Total distance cycled: 495 km