Horn appears as a high mountain when seen from below. But Horn is only a high point on a ridge that comes down from Volafjellet. Nevertheless, the views are astounding, providing excellent views towards Lønahorgi, Kvitanosi, Horndalsnuten, Gråsida and Mykletveitveten.
Horn's factor towards the higher Volafjellet is 100m. The saddle is just east of Horn. Last adjacent 5m contour lines are 1005m, giving an interpolated saddle of 1003m.
Note: Class ratings are in reference to YDS (Yosemite Decimal System).
The route described below is a winter ascent from Hovda, and is graded class 2. There is however nothing technically difficult about this route.
Hovda - Horn (round-trip winter trail)
Approx. 9km west of Voss, exit E16 towards Bulken/Hamlagrø. Do not drive towards Hamlagrø, but turn right onto Rekesvegen, going to Bulken. Follow this road for approx. 400m and turn sharp (very sharp) to the left onto the road to Vestbygdi. Follow signs to Vestbygdi. Approx 3Km after you turned onto this road, you should see a dark-green barn on your left hand side. Some older houses up to your right. This is Hovda. Find parking in this area.
Follow the forest road that begins by the dark-green barn and runs up between the old houses. The forest road crosses a small bridge and goes through a gate by a red farm building before it heads into the forest. Follow the forest road upwards and notice a gate which may be open. The forest road forks here, and you should follow the one up to the right. In a little while, notice a very sharp left turn followed by a long hill upwards. A long cliffband runs on your right hand side. On the top of this hill, you should see a small bench with some rocks on top. This bench is most likely a trailsign towards Nyastølen cabins, which are found a little further up in the forest, in the NE direction.
But at this point, the forest trail continues (across a stream) up through the forest. Follow it until road end and go through the forest, heading for the Horn west ridge. Going through the forest on foot in deep snow is cumbersome, and you should consider if you want to bring skis for this trip. Once on the ridge, it is a short climb to the summit.
The summit cairn is found at point 1070m, but the true high point at 1103m is found a little further to the east. A broken summit sign is found at the summit side facing south. Descend directly from the summit towards the Grasberget ridge. At approx. 740m, head west towards Nyastølen cabins, which you should have seen for quite a while now. At the cabins, head to the southernmost shed and keep a SW course towards the forest trail. SW, because you cannot climb down the cliffband above the forest road.
The December weather had been quite unusual. Low temperatures and no rain for quite some time. Due to the low temperatures, I expected I could hike on hard snow anywhere, and decided to go towards Voss and hike both Horn and Volafjellet. The forecast promised gorgeous weather. I drove to Hovda above Bulken, parked the car and headed up the forest road at 10:05AM. The ground was frozen solid. I nodded my head, and expected the easiest winter hike ever.
On my way through the forest, I was looking for the Nyestølen cabins, as I had been told that the forest road led to the cabins. Instead, the forest road ended in nowhere. The ground wasn't frozen at all anymore. Deep powder snow, and I had an unforseeable amount of forest ahead of me. Bad news. I put the dog in the backpack, and got mentally ready for a piece of hard work.
The snow was deep, reaching up to my knees. I went through hole after hole as I made my way through the forest. But Horn was right there in front of me, and it was just a matter of making it to the ridge. I was convinced I would reach hard snow there. I did, but ran into a severe wind layer that forced me to put on every piece of clothing I had brought along. 3 hats, and I was still freezing. One may question the quality of the hats... Troll was back on his feet again, and did a good job up the ridge, where it was a little steep for him in places. A little push from behind did wonders. We reached the main summit at 12:05PM, exactly two hours after leaving the car. This was actually according to the plan I had for Volafjellet, which now looked much further away than I had hoped for. A quick look at Troll made me cancel any further plans for Volafjellet. He was just sitting there, trying to make himself as small as possible. Shaking. He could possibly have made use of a sweater, too.
After a round of pictures, I headed down the Grasberget ridge. From this ridge, I saw Nyastølen cabins, and realized I had just missed them, going up. At 700m, we reached powder snow again, but Troll did not request any services, and showed rabbit talent down the deep snow meadow towards the cabins. It took us only a couple of minutes from the cabins back to the forest road, and we reached the car 13:35PM, 3,5 hours after we left it.
Troll immediately fell asleep in the car, but woke up halfway to Bergen. Apparently bored. He looked at me, sort of saying - "if my rotation-around-the-seat is getting on your nerves, just let me know". I did let him know, and decided that we should hike Ulriken once back in Bergen. Apparently, he still had some steam to blow off. Once on the Ulriken trail, nothing was like it use to be. I felt heavy and made slow progress. Troll ran faster than ever, and I have no idea how many times I yelled "WAIT! Will you?". Back at the house, Troll went to bed and stayed there the whole evening.
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