Norwegian Mountains

Vestrefjellet, 380m (Varden)

Fylke/Kommune : Hordaland/Tysnes
Maps : 1215-III Fusa (Statens Kartverk, Norge 1:50 000)
Primary factor : 272m
Skied : Mar 2005
See also : Ilefjellet
See also : Tysnessåta
See also : Stølafjellet
Vestrefjellet seen from Ilefjellet

Vestrefjellet seen from Ilefjellet

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If you are in Bergen, looking for a nice drive, a short, easy hike and some good views, then Vestrefjellet (the mountain to the west) on Tysnes is a good destination. Located just above Våge, the only drive is between Bergen and Os. Sit back on the ferry to Tysnes and enjoy the beautiful Sunnhordland nature before you walk up to the top of Vestrefjellet, also known as Varden.

The Tysnessåta massif takes away most of the view towards the majestic Rosendal mountains, but the Fusa view is a good substitute, with Gjønakvitingen towering above everything else. The Vestrefjellet trailhead is only 1,2Km from the ferry. A forest road takes you up to 230m, and then you follow a forest path to the top. This is absolutely a family hike, although the forest road is strenuous.

Primary factor:

Vestrefjellet (M711: 380m, Ø.K: 380,27m) has a primary factor of 272m towards the higher Ilefjellet (453m). The saddle is found near highway RV49, E of Smørkollen and N of Hollekjeleitet. Ref. Økonomisk Kartverk map (5m contours), you cross the 110m contours on the high route, but not 105m. The saddle height has been interpolated to 108m.

Trail descriptions:

Notes: Class ratings are in reference to YDS. Click here for more information.

The trails described below are not necessarily the *easiest* trails to this mountain.

Dallandsmyra (highway RV49) - Vestrefjellet (summer/autumn)

Difficulty : Class 1
Exposure : None
Comments : Family hike
Distance : 1,5Km top the top
Time : Approx. 1 hour to the top
Starting Elev.: 90m
Vertical Gain : Approx. 300m (total)

Map of the area
Map of the area
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Detailed map
Detailed map
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There are two alternatives from Bergen:

a) The shortest:
Follow highway E39 southbound towards Halhjem (by Osøyro). Take the Halhjem - Våge ferry (fee for passenger cars per Feb 2005 is NOK 100,-) The ferry takes approx. 40 minutes. From Våge on Tysnes, drive 350m from the ferry to the E39 (Stord)/RV 49 junction. See below for further driving instructions.

b) A long drive:
From Bergen, follow highway E16 towards Oslo. At the E16/RV7 junction at Trengereid, turn right onto RV7. Drive approx. 13,9Km and turn right onto highway RV48 (Tysse/Mundheim) Follow this road for approx. 34,7Km to Kilen. Turn right onto highway 549 and follow this road all the way to the bridge across Lokksundet (follow signs towards Våge) Continue all the way to the E39 (Stord)/RV 49 junction in Våge

From the E39 (Stord)/RV 49 junction, continue on E39 for 1,2Km. Turn right onto a gravel road that forks into three roads. Park here.

The route

Follow the middle gravel road upwards. This is a forest road that runs up to approx. 230m elevation. At the end of the forest road, follow a forest path that descends towards the north to approx. 210m elevation. The forest path turns gradually westbound and climbs towards a pass north of the high point.

From the pass, you may not see a path towards the high point (southbound), but just head up between bushes to a plateau where you get the cairn in view, and proceed across the plateau. Descend your ascent route.

Trip report Mar 21 2005

This Monday in the Easter holiday was a quiet day at work, so I decided to leave a little earlier. It was a beautiful day, and I was sick and tired of going up and down Ulriken. Since the days are getting longer late in March, this is the time when other mountains can be done on a week-day. I took the 15:20PM ferry from Halhjem. I had no clue about the trail, but I remembered seeing a forest road on my hike to Ilefjellet a few weeks earlier. Now it was just a matter of locating this forest road.

I followed highway RV49 until I saw a forest road go up to my right. I drove up to the nearest house and asked if this forest road would lead me towards Varden. The man in the house acknowledged, and by 16:15PM me and the dog ("Troll") were on the way up the forest road.

The forest road was quite steep, and Troll hates steep roads. I had to motivate him. Big time. "Gooooood dooooog", "Look, look, look, look", "Goooooood dooooog", etc. This effort got him up the top of the forest road, but when he saw the wet forest path, he totally parked his legs.

I put him in the backpack and followed the forest path. I didn't like the situation. The summit was just above me, and not only did the path go in the wrong direction, it went downwards. I wondered if I should head back to the end of the forest road and just climb the steep mountain side. I ended up with showing some patience, and sure enough, the forest road started to climb and head in what seemed to be the right direction.

Since I didn't have to wait for the dog, I started to think about the time. I knew the ferry left 17:45PM and the next one at 19:30PM. That's a long wait, should I just miss the first. The time was now 16:45PM, and I was "rolling". I assumed I would reach the summit within 15 minutes and only need 30 minutes on the descent. Things looked good. I had already started to think about Mt. Ulriken back in Bergen with a whole lot of forest still above me.

Unlike my recent hikes, this hike was nearly snow-free, and I kept a good pace from the moment I put Troll in the backpack. I reached the summit 16:55PM. I did a quick round of pictures, challenged by a moving dog in the backpack. He had recognized the summit cairn and expected treats for his efforts up the forest road. I told him to be quiet, to no avail. I pretty much knew all the mountains in the horizon. After my recent hike to Ilefjellet, I had done a thorough job with the pictures. As such, there was no reason to kill time on the summit, and by 17:00PM, I was on my way down. With Troll still in the backpack.

It only took me 10 minutes down to the forest road, and let Troll out of the backpack. He's a real downhill dog, and 5 minutes later, we were back at the car. The time was 17:15PM, and we had all the time in the world. 5 minutes later, I was standing in line for the ferry. As I had decided earlier in the afternoon, I would hike Mt. Ulriken before I called it the day. With a good pace, we reached the Ulriken tower 19:40PM. It was getting dark by now, and I had to use the headlamp on my way down. Troll walked most of the Ulriken part, and crawled immediately to bed after a late evening meal.

Pictures from the Mar 21 2005 hike

Move cursor to read notes, and click on the images to see full version.
Some of the thumbnails may have been cropped to fit the format.

1. Melderskin seen from the Tysnes ferry (241KB) 2. Northern Tysnes mountains seen from the ferry (229KB) 3. Gygrastolen seen from the Tysnes ferry (194KB) 4. Vaaganipen seen from the Tysnes ferry (138KB) 5. On the forest road towards Vestrefjellet (176KB) 6. Vestrefjellet summit - Varden (182KB) 7. North view from Vestrefjellet (431KB) 8. East view from Vestrefjellet (379KB) 9. South view towards Stord from Vestrefjellet (165KB) 10. West from from Vestrefjellet (212KB) 11. North view (zoom) from Vestrefjellet (746KB) 12. Tysnessaata seen from Vestrefjellet (248KB) 13. Englafjell seen from Vestrefjellet (195KB) 14. Vaage seen from Vestrefjellet (169KB) 15. Tysnessaata seen from the ferry (124KB) 16. A look towards the moon (158KB)

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Pictures from other hikes:

1. Liafjellet summit view (253KB) 2. Dalstuva summit views (788KB) 3. Above Tysnes (254KB)

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