Gilafjellet from Åstadstølane (ski)


Estimated net time 4-5 hours
Difficulty No difficulties.
Drinking water No access to drinking water during winter, except possibly from under the bridge crossing the narrow river between the two lakes.
GSM coverage Coverage throughout the route (February 2010).
Parking Room for many cars at car park by trail head.
Start height 997 metres
Vertical metres 730 metres for the roundtrip.
Trip distance 12.8 km
GPS-file X


Route photo

  Route to Gilafjellet from a little below trail head.


The first part of the access to the trail head has two alternative routes.


If driving E16 from Bergen or arriving on E16 from Beitostølen locate the Statoil petrol station (per February 2010) in the junction between road E16 and the road coming south from Beitostølen, at Ryfoss. From the petrol station drive road E16 200 metres east, turn right, and drive another 130 metres to a T-junction. Turn left here and drive 550 metres to the next T-junction. Turn right here. Further driving instructions are given below.


If driving road E16 north from Fagernes, drive approximately 33 km and turn left at the north-west end of lake Slidrefjorden, and cross the river on the bridge. 270 metres after leaving E16 turn right, and drive another 1.5 km. Keep going straight ahead in this junction. Further driving instructions are given below.


From the junction you have now reached drive another 1.0 km and stay left in the fork. After another 1.2 km you get to an unmanned toll booth. The cost is NOK 60 per 2010. After the toll booth drive another 7.1 km until you get to the end of the winter road. Park at the large car park, next to the small store and cafeteria.

Start skiing by heading south down to the small bridge between the lakes Nordre Syndin and Midtre Syndin. After the bridge turn right and then left, skiing along the north-west shores of lake Midtre Syndin. Continue south, on the west side of the lake, in total 800 metres from the bridge. You are likely to find machine made tracks from trail head to here.

You will now see a distinct gorge (Hågensgil) running north-east from Gilafjellet, and you should aim to ski along its right (north-west) side. Follow the gorge all the way up to approximately 1310 metres (this is the first part of the gorge that is not too deep to be crossed) and head south. Continue another 500 metres south after having crossed the gorge. From here there are several possible routes to the summit, but the easiest is to turn right and head directly east, up the modestly steep hill-side. This will take you directly to the summit, which is marked by a cairn, and holds a wooden box with a registration book.

The descent is best done by reversing the ascent route.



24. February 2010

Day three of our Beitostølen winter holiday, and since the weather forecast for this Wednesday was very promising I decided to take on a "proper" mountain. After breakfast and some preparations I drove from Beitostølen, reaching trail head a little before 11. The drive across the mountain area towards trail head was very nice, with large areas of fine white snow and a bright sun.

From trail head I skied down to the lakes, following fine ski tracks, and then I headed off-track as I reached the cabins on the west side of lake Midtre Syndin. I was immediately hit by negative thoughts, since the snow was wind packed and had a nasty crust, which wasn't strong enough to carry my weight. Another negative factor was that the wind was picking up, and I soon realised that I would most definitely need to stop somewhere along the route to put on more clothes.

After having crossed the gorge at 1310 metres I headed directly south, thinking that the summit was the point marked as 1570 on the maps. The positive thing about this wrong navigation was that I found a place with some shelter, allowing me to do a complete change of upper body clothes, which I desperately needed since my base layer was soaking wet and the wind made me much colder than comfortable. When I got up close to the wide ridge between the summit and point 1570 I eventually checked my GPS, and immediately saw that I was heading the wrong way. I therefore corrected my direction, and could ski across to the summit.

At the summit I located the registration book, but it was full of snow so I didn't see any point in signing it. Also, it was so windy I didn't want to risk the book being blown out of my hands while signing. The prospect of good photos, apart from my lack of abilities to take good photos, had gotten a major blow by clouds drifting in during the latter part of my ascent, so after taking a few photos I decided to head back down.

Because of the difficult snow conditions I decided to keep my skins on when descending. This turned out OK, and allowed me an easier ascent back up from the lake to trail head. Back at the car park I picked up dry clothes, got changed at the shop/cafeteria, and bought myself a Coke and a chocolate, before driving back to Beitostølen.
Photos 24.02.2010