As part of my big cruise, I had noticed on the town map some hiking trails leading up to a viewpoint high above town, and was itching to go. Since we had made our run through town, I gathered my stuff together. Neesh was worried about me hiking in some foreign country, but I assured her it should only be a couple hours and it’s perfectly safe, so off I went at 1:30, map in hand.
My hiking buddies will take great pleasure that in the myriad of roads going up, I got horribly off track, zigging and zagging all over the place. First, the map was not all that good, missing a ton of roads, and second, not all the roads were named on the map, so there was much confusion on my part. Finally after some backtracking, I arrived at the path, meeting a couple who left the ship the same time as me, but moving much slower. “We just kept going up.” That seemed the smarter way now, doesn’t it.
The trail is more of a wide dirt path, passing through mixed forest.
I hope this isn’t a nudist path
There were many familiar trees and plants, like my old foe the fir, and I also saw Indian Paint Brush and clover flowers. Can’t say I’ve seen these before, though.
I also found blueberries. Wait, you’re somewhere else. They look like blueberries. The leaves look right. Indeed they taste like blueberries. Munch munch munch. Yummy. There were plenty of viewpoints along the way towards the harbor.
Man, was I out of shape. A month without hiking, and this trail went on and on and on. Finally I came to the viewpoint, but then spied the true summit in the near distance. Hmmm, what’s it like over there?
It had taken 1:15 to get this far, and I’d be pushing the two hour “limit” I had set, but shameless peakbagger that I am, I had to tag the true summit. Off I went, now on a real hiking trail, complete with skinny path, lots of rocks, and even a bog bridge.
As I neared the summit 15 minutes later, I was now above treeline. Pretty cool considering I was only at 1300 feet or so.
The trail continued on from here, and I wished I had a few more days now to explore.
There was a gentleman doing something near a hut at the top, and as I turned, he said something in Norwegian. I said, sorry, I’m American, and as most Norwegians can, he then switched to English. He explained there was a book to sign in inside a metal box. Oh, a register! Cool! He said that to get people out, these are spread about the local trail system on the peaks, and if you sign in 6 of them, and provide a photo of the code on a laminated card for each, you get a mug. Six peaks? My kind of list!
One down (Mt. Television Antenna North of Varden), five to go!
OK, it was now 3:05 and I had to beat feet back before Neesh got worried. No issues there, going down is also quick and easy for me, and I found the most direct way back this time (surprisingly…). Back at the room at 4:00 and Neesh wasn’t worried, but bummed I didn’t get any blueberries. Guess I should’ve said 3 hours instead. Turns out to have been a 6.5 mile hike and 1460’ of gain. Not too shabby after all.