It’s time to step up the game on alpine winter climbing, and next week we’re aiming to visit Store Austanbottstind, 2203m with a prominence of 450m. It’s Norway’s 55th-highest peak, and a mountain that requires proper climbing.
It is not a particularly complex mountain to climb, but it’s pretty steep and requires a rope for the final few meters.
The weather in the region has not been friendly in the past few days, with a 50-year downpour record and corresponding floods. Thus we are both curious and humble about the conditions in the mountains and have a plan B and C in place in case of unacceptable avalanche risks.
I’m planning to share the breadcrumbs from the climb on the TRACK ME page above, starting Monday around noon.
|First climb||August 3rd, 1883 – Carl Hall og Matias Soggemoen|
|Region||Hurrungane, Luster/Årdal, Western Norway|
|Coordinates||32V 435740 6811475 (UTM)|
|Sunrise / Sunset (twilight)||08:35 (07:43) / 15:52 (16:44)|
A short expedition to grow my experience with winter climbing, seek positive albeit cold adventures in alpine mountains, and enjoy some alpine climbing in cold weather with the risk of ice and slippery surfaces.
We’re focusing on proper planning, setting camp at high altitudes, and doing adequate risk assessments.
To properly document the climb, we’re bringing an Insta360 x3 camera and a GoPro Hero camera with various mounts. If we get all the kit to work correctly, I’ll post a Part 2 with a full expedition report, video and photos.
Expected horizontal movement: 4km/h
Expected vertical movement: 20 minutes for each 100m altitude increase
Temperature change per altitude meter: -0.7°C per 100m
Temperature is forecasted to range from +5°C at the starting point, to -15°C at the peak, which with the current wind conditions, represents a wind chill of -22°C, which I find rather cold.
The challenge with this temperature range is staying dry from the wet and muddy start, through slushy snow, to the windy and cold hostile section at the peak of 2203m.
To ensure sufficient time for the alpine climb and the best possible experience, especially given the current rather hostile weather conditions, we are planning this as a two-day expedition. We will hike in with snowshoes on day one and establish base camp at the ridge south of the peak on day one, thus maximising the climb experience on day two.
From a risk perspective, our risk tolerance is low, and given the extreme downpour over the past few days, we have a plan B and C in place if the avalanche risk is unacceptable.
Weather and Terrain
Despite a short expedition, a full emergency kit, including an emergency shelter, will be included. We are bringing 0.25l fuel for food per person per day and 0.25l fuel for heat per day, plus a safety margin, bringing us to 0.8l total. We’re planning two tents, one each for safety, and will bring full avalanche safety kit as well.
Weatherwise, we are planning for wind chill down to -35°C, and gale wind up to 20m/s.