Today’s been a day of mixed emotions. Seeing my wife and kids again last night was indescribably good. Saying goodbye and watch them turn back into the fog was indescribably difficult.
Yesterday evening was a blast though. The girls brought veal stew and rice, my favourite. My stomach has been gently reminding me not to eat 3-5 dinner portions daily so unfortunately I had to pace myself, otherwise I could have eaten the entire pot myself. They also brought a pair of replacement gloves – this time Norrøna Falketind, proper explorer gloves. Love them!
Hunting and Fishing Trivial Pursuit has become a mandatory after dinner pastime while at Ekrehytta. As we neither hunt nor fish it’s turning into a game of inventing the most ridiculous answers instead. Great fun!
Ekrehytta is one of our favourite places and where I proposed to my wife. Beautifully located just beneath Fannaråki, you can see no artificial lights at dark, all quiet and the powerful wilderness of the mountains literally at your doorstep. Recently my brother in law has put it on Airbnb and I strongly recommend it as a base for exploring the wonderful mountains and nature!
Wife and kids joined me to Keiserpasset, supposedly for the view, but given the dense fog (see a pattern here?), I suspect it was mostly to keep me company. After a long goodbye and quick descent past Gjertvatnet, the fog lifted and Gjertvassdalen revealed itself in all its beauty.
Today’s hike was the shortest for the entire trail, only 11km long, 330m ascent and 710m descent. It brings me to just under 100km in the past 5 days though, with a total ascent of over 4500 meters in the same period. I’m starting to feel it on my body even though I have to shamelessly admit it’s responding surprisingly well to the abuse I’m putting it through. Feet are just fine, no back issues what so ever, and not even a hint of shortness of breath. The left knee has gone from hinting at its presence to being outright painful though. Fortunately it’s nothing a solid dose of pain killers and anti-inflammatory won’t fix. So far so good.
Arrived at Skogadalsbøen right on schedule. Just like last year’s hike, I’m staying in my own cabin generously provided by my brother-in-law. Tomorrow I’ll spend all day here doing nothing but relax, heal and read some ancient mountaineering books from the main cabin library. I simply cannot wait!!
- Total distance hiked: 11.5km
- Total time: 4:18 hrs.
- Total ascent: 381m
- Total descent: 787m
- Max elevation: 1500m
- Today’s favourite item: My new Norrøna Falketind hiking gloves. Not quite as super light as the previous ones, but water and wind proof, and very high quality.
- Today’s crap moment: Saying goodbye to the girls.
- Today’s word of wisdom: Never ever wade barefoot. If you step on something sharp or bang up a foot your hike is over. Boots can always be dried, feet are difficult to replace on a hike.