Mountain area: Lindås/Masfjorden
Map: 1216-III Stanghelle
Primary Factor: >250m (est.)
Hiked: Sep 2001
Austlendingen and Husdalsfjellet
Highway E39 - Austlendingen trail
|Time:||3-6 hours round-trip|
To me, Austlendingen defines the northern border between city and mountains. The long Eikefet tunnel goes straight through the grand massif, and connects Nordhordland to the Masfjorden/Matre/Stølsheimen region. But the feedback I get on this mountain, is that it belongs to Nordhordland, and has nothing to do with Masfjorden. Anyhos, this mountain is a "must" for hiking enthusiasts. The view is fantastic!
From Bergen, take highway E39 towards Førde. Drive over the Nordhordland bridge (fee NOK 45,-), continue along Osterfjorden through Knarvik and Eikanger. Just before you arrive the Eikefet tunnel (approx. 50km from the centre of Bergen), exit left towards Masfjorden (signed exit), and you will immediately find parking on the left hand side of the road (opposite the information board).
Follow the E39 highway approx. 50m towards the tunnel, and exit right onto a trail marked (hard to see) "Austlendingen". The trail is very visible, often also marked with red paint. The trail runs steep up the right-hand side of the waterfall. Watch out for some slippery rocks up here! The trail eventually crosses the waterfall (a rope is available for balance, but there is nothing spooky about it). From the waterfall, the trail follows the river and the next place to rest is a big hump on approx. 400m. From this hump you see the direction of the trail - between the mountain to the left (point 735 on the map) and the pass where the river runs.
The climb up to the top of the pass is tiresome considering the steep climb you've had up to now. Once you get to the top of the pass (with point 735 up to your left), you will notice the trails Y-split. The left trail is the right way, but I would suggest you follow the right, and save the left for your return. The trail to the right could be hard to follow, but just stay on the ridge you're on, and head for a cairn you see straight ahead.
When you arrive the cairn, you will see the Austlendingen summit cairn 90 deg. to your left. Hike over to the summit and enjoy some of the hundreds of small lakes and ponds on this massif. From the summit, follow the cairns down a ridge parallel to the one you came up. Eventually, you will rendevouz with the trail in the pass where you went right.
I had wanted this mountain for a long time, and tried to hike by coming over Husdalsfjellet from Molviki down by the Osterfjord. But I stopped at Husdalsfjellet summit due to fog. The Gryteskardet pass looked far from friendly in the fog. So months went by, and I mentioned this mountain to a collegue, and he said another collegue of ours, Jon Andås owned large parts of the mountain. Enthustiastic I went to Jon, and he told me about this trail going up next to the waterfall. Now it was just a matter of finding a slot in a busy autumn hiking schedule.
Saturday, sep 8 2001 was supposed to be a rainy day, so I had no other plans than to wait to see what the weather was like, and crash a lower mountain somewhere nearby. But to my surprise, the weather wasn't bad at all, and decided to go for Austlendingen. I expected the mountain to be hidden in fog, but if I'm lucky, it would clear up later in the day.
After I had parked the car, I fumbled around for the trail, but decided to follow a trail that lead down to the water. I believed Jon said the trail was towards the tunnel, but I didn't see any. Fortunately I met a guy before I had gone very far, and he explained where the trail started. We chatted for a while, and it turned out he was Jon's cousin. That family is always around when I need them! I expressed my concern about the fog, but he "guaranteed" that there was no fog on top of the mountain. "Rrrrright, I thought to myself, looking at the fog coming down the mountain.
I began the hike 12:00pm, and the trail was just as I like them - steep and to the point. I really enjoyed taking photos above the waterfall, even if I slipped on the rocks and landed on my back with my legs out in the water. My only thought was to keep the camera dry. I was considering feeling embarassed, but further examination of the slippery rocks, added to the enthusiasm around a waterfall like that, I concluded it was a honest accident. The trail was wet, very wet and muddy. But still, the hike was fun. I had not once looked at the map, so I had no ideas where the trail was taking me. But I noticed that there was no fog up on the mountain. Embarrassed I accepted defeat! At the pass at approx. 700m, I chose the wrong trail. But it didn't matter, as it gave me a nice round-trip on the plateau. I arrived the summit 14:00pm sharp.
And, lo and behold, Troll chose to walk all the way. He had a few protest before we even entered the trail, but we had a "quality" talk, and he chose to continue. On the way down, he laid down flat, as I avoided a shortcut I had taken over the hump at 400m. I knew this protest. It was a "hey - we're going the wrong way" type of protest. I had to carry him until we were back on the right trail, and there were no more protests.
I was somewhat concerned about going down, as the trail was extremely slippery. But due the joy of having done the mountain (and without having to carry the dog), we both sled down the slippery rocks in awesome speed, and was back at the car 15:20, 1 hour one hour after we left the summit. The summit view was simply spectacular. I really enjoyed this mountain. It is perfect for an afternoon hike in the autumn, and I will be back with friends.
Pictures: (move cursor to read notes, and click on the images to see full version)
Pictures from other hikes:
Other hordaland mountains Other Lindås K. mountains westcoastpeaks.com