Hornstinden seen from the ferry
From Brønnøysund, follow highway 17 (coastal road) towards Sandnessjøen. Take the Horn - Andalsvågen ferry, 11Km from the exit just outside Brønnøysund.
When you drive off the ferry at Andalsvågen, find a place to park the car.
From the ferry, walk 300-400m along the highway, and exit when you see the sign "Fjelltrimmen". The trail passes an old farm, and from there on, the trail is marked with red paint all the way to the top.
The beginning of the trail climbs up to Høyvikfjellet, 388m. The trail is mostly on rock, and above this, you walk on soil almost all the way to the top.
Not too much to say about this trail. It's steep but gentle at the same time. After all, you hike to 885m from sea level. The trail is wisely created, giving you seaview when natural. It also takes you around the steeper sides of the mountain. You probably will find the first climb up to 400m the most strenuous part.
Saltkartinden and Stortinden
From Hornstinden, you see Saltkartinden and Stortinden in the north, and northern Høyholmstindane beyond. Walk down the northeastern ridge from Hornstinden, down to lake Liåvatnet. The hike down, despite the view, offers no problems.
Down at the lake, you have a clear view of Svanvasstinden, 803m in the east. On its ridge, you see a small pass. Walk up on the left-hand side. This will take you between point 882 and lake 708. You now have Saltkartinden straight ahead, and you can climb up its left-hand side. Be careful when you get close to the top. The last 50m requires climbing between larger rocks.
The view is breathtaking, and people afraid of heights should not be standing close to the edge here. From the summit point, you see the long and narrow ridge that leads to Stortinden, 930m. Climb back down from the Saltkartinden summit block, and follow the ridge to Stortinden.
When walking the Stortinden ridge, stick to the left-hand side. I remember one point where I took off the backpack, but I can't remember if there was a safer passage on the left. It's not bad at all, since the left-hand side does not have a steep fall. On your way back, just head straight down towards lake 708 and follow your tracks back. Unfortunately, this means you have to climb Hornstinden again, so pay attention to your strength.
It took me 3 hours to Stortinden, and 2,5 hours down. I walked rather quick, without the dog in my backpack. I would suggest to plan for a couple of hours more, to be on the safe side. Bring a ferry timetable. It was very annoying to see the ferry leave as I came down to 100m, but it was only 1,5 hour until the next one..
I would not suggest to climb the northern Høyholmstinder from this side, unless you would like a very long hike. From Stortinden, it seemed like these mountains best would be climbed from Høyholm, and up the ridge leading to the top.
Great views to Finnknefjella in Vefsn, and naturally Andalshatten and Innerhatten, rising from the sea behind you. Good view towards Vega, straight west of Hornstinden.
I didn't find any streams on the trail to Hornstinden, but around lake Liåvatnet, there are plenty of streams for water refill.
On my way down, I was intercepted by this grouse. She was desperate to lead me away from the young ones, probably nearby. She was walking and flying in front of me for at least 15 minutes, and when I stopped, she came rushing back to me, making sure I didn't leave the trail. Very amusing.
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