Arrived safely at Sandhaug just before three o’clock, probably setting the speed record so far on MASSIV with an average moving speed of 5.2 km/h. The main reason for the speed is that it was forecast thunderstorms and lightning this evening, and I wanted to add plenty of margin to ensure I would be well out of harms way before it hit. Weather report also forecasted the heaviest rain thus far on this expedition. Fortunately that did not come to fruition, so I was wearing my rain over pants in vain. Some light rain during the entire trek though, so good thing I was wearing my rain jacket and not my hiking jacket.
The hike was otherwise quite similar to yesterday. Hardangervidda is huge, flat and quite monotonous. Despite being in a national park there were a surprisingly large number of wheel tracks and makeshift roads.
Today’s section put me back on the official MASSIV track again roughly half way. It was a relatively flat 24.11km hike with only 644m of ascent and 633m of descent. Highest point was a mere 1316m. The trail starts with a mild descent through marshlands before raising to the main plateau. The marked path some places deviate from the map, most likely due to slight changes in the cairns for nature preservation purposes. It is however very easy to find the way.
Due to the heavy rain forecast I hiked with my Patagonia rain jacket today and put the proper Fjällräven jacket in the backpack. At less than half the weight, it’s both better ventilated, more comfortable, sufficiently wind proof and significantly easier to pack. I should have left the Fjällräven jacket at home and saved over half a kilo.
Life on the trail also gives an insight into life and death on the prairie. Came across a dead lemming that looked like it had a fit of rage, rolled perfectly over on its back and died. Thoughts and prayers to its family …
Somehow all body parts are still playing along without a hitch. All knee aches are gone, the minor hints at a blister on the pinky toe is gone, and also no muscle aches. It would be awesome if this would last the final few days as well.
Also came across what must be a Hobbit house in the Norwegian equivalent of “The Shire”. Cute little cabin, and with nobody home it was the perfect place for lunch.
The second half of the trail was among the most boring sections I’ve hiked in years. The trail followed a makeshift road of dirt and gravel, and while the view was nice it remained unchanged for many kilometres. Fortunately it picked up a bit in the final approach towards Sandhaug.
Please note that these posts are only updated whenever I stumble within mobile network connectivity. If you’re curious about progress in between posts, check out the Live GPS Tracker which is updated automagically.
- Total distance hiked: 24.11 km
- Total time: 5:42 hrs
- Total ascent: 644m
- Total descent: 633m
- Max elevation: 1316m
- Today’s favourite item: Most definitely my Patagonia super versatile rain jacket.
- Today’s crap moment: Nothing, except boring sections of the hike.
- Toughest section: None, pretty flat, no boulders or quagmires.
- Today’s word of wisdom: Always bring a nail cutter and keep your toe nails short. Otherwise they’ll fall off in a few days.