|Svarth°i from Bjorli
|Estimated net time||5-6 hours|
|Drinking water||No access to drinking water during winter.|
|GSM coverage||Coverage at the beginning of the route. Poor coverage at the summit (February 2009).|
|Parking||Room for many cars at Bjorli ski-centre (fee).|
|Start height||1215 metres|
|Vertical metres||815 metres for the roundtrip.|
|Trip distance||18.7 km|
|GPS-file||X (it is probably best to both ascend and descend using my descent route; the northern route)|
Drive road E136 to Bjorli. From E136 drive north towards the ski-slopes and find parking at the ski-slope's car park. Take the chair lift up to ~1030 metres, then ski down a few tens of metres, and turn right onto the piste traversing west to the bottom of the ski-lift going up to Bjorlih°i (NOK 70 per February 2009).
After getting off the ski-lift ski the reminding few metres to the top of Bjorlih°i. You will now have a good view of Svarth°i towards north-east. Directly east you will see Kollh°i (1401). Start skiing by aiming north of the north ridge of Kollh°i, following a direct north-east route. When you pass the north ridge of Kollh°i you should aim for the flatter section in Svarth°i's western slopes. Your direction is now directly towards Svarth°i's summit, which can be seen in the distance. There is a stream coming down here in summer, and you follow this stream east and later east/north-east. When the terrain gets steeper you turn right and head south, before turning left (east) and then left again (north) to ski across the summit plateau. The summit is marked by a cairn. In order to get a better view of the mountains to the west you should also ski across to the western edge of the plateau, less than 100 metres west of the summit.
The descent is best done by following the ascent route back to Bjorlih°i. From here you follow the slopes back down to the base of the ski-centre.
07. February 2009
We were spending another week-end at my employer's cabin at Bjorli. This time also together with Ole Petter and his family.
After a relatively late Friday night it suited me well to observe that the temperature on Saturday morning was below -20░C, and hence start time of today's hike ought to be late morning. A little before 11:00 Elisabeth drove me to the ski-centre, from where I had planned to take the chair-lift up the slopes. After I had purchased my ticket I asked if this one ticket would allow me to also take the second lift to the top of Bjorlih°i. The guy at the ticket counter confirmed that my one NOK 70 ticket allowed me to take both lifts.
After arriving at Bjorlih°i at 11:30 I put the skins on the skis and started skiing across to Svarth°i. It was very cold, but no wind and the sun was shining from a clear sky.
The skiing across the flat terrain to the base of Svarth°i was done on hard snow and ice (there was hardly any snow on the lakes). From the end of Kollh°i's north ridge I was a bit unsure on what route to follow up Svarth°i's west slopes, and in hindsight I realise that my route of choice was too far south compared to the easiest route. My direct ascent route was steep, on partly difficult and hard snow, but probably the shortest. When I got above ~1600 metres the condition of the snow was fantastic, and it was pure pleasure to complete the reminder of the hike.
The summit of Svarth°i was a fantastic place to spend this fine Saturday, and the views are really good. Unfortunately the mountains Kaldbottinden and Kleneggen are obstructing some of the view towards parts of the Rauma mountains, but that didn't make a big difference to my happiness-score ...
After having completed my round of summit photos I skied across to the west edge of the summit plateau to find a better location for photographing the huge mountain area towards west. From here I could also get a good view of my planned descent route.
The descent was done further north than my ascent, and here I had good snow conditions all the way down to ~1350 metres. From here on it was icy and wind-packed snow down to the flat section. What followed next was a long hike back to Bjorlih°i, but with the sun shining it was mostly a pleasure. And from Bjorlih°i it was the joy of the alpine slopes back down to the ski-centre that entertained me.
Back at the ski-centre I called Elisabeth, who had been in the slopes with Njňl most of the day, and she picked me up within a couple of minutes. At the cabin I got the sauna going, and while it was heating I re-hydrated on water, Coke and whatever I could lay my hands on. The thing was that I was pretty de-hydrated since I had put my water bottles on the outside of my backpack, and they were frozen rock solid. Another thing to learn ...