|Snøhetta from Snøheim
|Estimated net time||5-6 hours|
|Difficulty||In general no difficulties, but there's mostly boulder above 1700 metres. Crossing the river approximately 300 metres from Snøheim is likely to involve some back-and-forth across wet stones.|
|Drinking water||Several streams up to 1630 metres.|
|GSM coverage||Coverage throughout the route (June 2013).|
|Parking||Room for many cars at Hjerkinnhus Vandrerhjem (NOK 50 per day per 2013), which is the starting point for the bus to Snøheim.|
|Start height||1470 metres|
|Vertical metres||830 metres for the roundtrip.|
|Trip distance||11.8 km|
From the round about where roads E6 and E136 meet, at Dombås, drive E6 30.5 km in the direction of Trondheim. Turn left where signed for "Hjerkinn st.", drive 400 metres, and turn right up to Hjerkinnhus Vandrerhjem. Park at the large car park (NOK 50 per day per 2013).
From Hjerkinnhus you need to get a bus to Snøheim (until the road potentially opens for private cars some time in the future). The cost per 2013 is NOK 50 (one way) per person. Details of time table can be found here.
From Snøheim locate the path along the right (north-east) side of the small lake below the hotel. This path is marked by red paint, and there's also metal poles close to the path. The path will take you up to the ruins (and a small hut) of Gamle Reinheim, at approximately 1670 metres. From here the terrain gets steeper, and is mainly boulder, all the way up to the summit. The route is marked by red "T"s as well as metal poles. At the summit you will find a building and a couple of proper cairns.
Descend by reversing your ascent route.
29. June 2013
This hike was planned 52 weeks ago, and has a very distinct reasoning behind it. Exactly two years earlier we had hiked Galdhøpiggen in miserable conditions, and last year we hiked Gaustatoppen in rain and fog. I then concluded that it wasn't likely the conditions would be so poor three years running, on the same week-end, and decided to hike one of the major Norwegians mountains this week-end in 2013. Unfortunately we managed to hit poor conditions for the third year in a row; this year with fog and snow.
The plan for the hike to Snøhetta was to drive to Bjorli, together with Lervågs, on Friday night and stay at their cabin. Then off to Hjerkinn early Saturday morning to get the bus to Snøheim, followed by the hike to Snøhetta and back out to Hjerkinn. But with poor weather forecast for the week-end the Lervågs decided to throw in the towel, but very kindly allowed us to use their cabin if we wanted to do the hike. And we were determined to continue according to plan since Elisabeth and the boys were going to drive to south-east Norway anyway this week-end, and hence the stop at Bjorli/Dovre would make the drive more meaningful.
We got out of bed early Saturday morning and made it to Hjerkinn to catch the bus to Snøheim, and decided to proceed as planned despite thick fog down to 1600 metres. Fortunately there was only modest wind and no rain, so the first flat part of the hike was fairly enjoyable despite limited views. And since we had seen several groups of musk ox while on the bus to Snøheim we felt we had got some value for money already this day. When we got to the base of Snøhetta, by Gamle Reinheim, we were surprised to see hikers coming downhill. Our assumption was that they had stayed overnight at Snøheim and had started early, but after having met a few hikers we understood they had all turned around a little higher because of icy boulder. We didn't quite understand the problem, but when we got up to 1800 metres we got into the icy territory, which consisted of a thin film of ice covering everything. It certainly required focus but to return back down was never an option. In addition to the ice we were walking through thick fog, and when we got closer to the summit it started to snow. This actually improved conditions since the boulder now got less icy. And the last section was easy since it still had old snow.
At the summit it was snowing properly, but we still allowed ourselves a few minutes to enjoy a sandwich and a little to drink. And a few photos. Then back down to the bus at Snøheim, and some more musk ox sightings while travelling back to our car. From here we parted, with Elisabeth, Njål and Sigurd driving south to Sarpsborg, and me going back to the cabin at Bjorli.
As a post script it's worth noting that the following Sunday had fantastic
weather all over southern Norway, including the Snøhetta massif. And it's
already decided that we're going for a proper hike the same week-end also in