Norwegian Mountains, Møre og Romsdal
3 x Sandvikhornet, Apr - June 2009
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A rough ridge and swans, June 19 2009
I had been looking at this ridge route (between Sandvika and Rysseneset) for quite a while. Looking at the steepest part, I became more and more intimidated, but (unfortunately or not) with this intimidation also comes obsession.
On this Friday afternoon, I decided to become familiar with this ridge. The worst part was actually the meadow, which was oh-so boggy and soaking. I was almost all out of energy before I had ascended 20 meters. I will never repeat this route! Then followed a trivial section, but as I approached the steepest section, I didn't think I would be able to do this route all the way up. There was easier terrain next to the ridge, but then it wouldn't be a ridge route! But I found a neat "corridor" on the left-hand side of the ridge, and through a steep scramble, I got up without risking too much.
And now that I was up on the plateau, I decided to wander up the mountain to see if I could spot a pair of swans that someone had told me about a few months earlier. I didn't really think I would find them, but I eventually did!. And they had 4 cygnets! It was quite something. I think this is the first time I've actively gone somewhere to observe a bird. Perhaps this is the start of something?
Seeing these swans was a very nice experience. The amateur photographer in me wanted to get closer, but the wildlife enthusiast in me made me sit down and observe them from a distance. I had no good reason to disturb these beautiful birds. The pair has been up here for years, only seeking out the fjord when the water up here freezes in the winter. And they normally get 3-4 cygnets every year. One year they didn't have any chicks because of too much water (the eggs vanished).
Then I headed towards Sandvikhornet and descended to Sandvik along a treacherous gully. At one point, a rock didn't behave the way I had expected it to, and I fell backwards. I had the camera in the hand and all I thought about was keeping it up in the air. The backpack and the ice-axe took away most of the impact and the fall was inconsequential.
I ended up in someone's backyard, and the someone and his friend was sitting on the porch. They seemed a bit surprised to see someone suddenly standing in front of the house, and even more so when I pointed up to the gully I had descended. After the mandatory "Who are you, where do you come from, where do you live, and who lived there before you" we had a nice chat.
The car was only 600m up the road and I had beer in the fridge. It was a good Friday afternoon.
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This was an afternoon with awesome clouds - and the cold winds that go along with this type of clouds. No more words are necessary.
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This is a route that I frequently do. All through the winter of 2008-2009, I have been hiking from Tjørvåg, but more and more I head out from Sandvik. A nice road (closed for cars) takes you up to Sandvikskaret, from where you can either hike Skåla or Sandvikhornet.
If you turn right towards Sandvikhornet, then follow the forest road approx. 300m until you see the Sandvikhornet sign. Turn right again and follow the path that runs up the ridge and continues up to the top of Sandvikhornet. The trail is excellent and the views are superb!
The pictures were taken with a Canon EOS 450D + Canon EF-S 17-85mm IS USM F 4-5.6
(Full size images)
(Images scaled down.