After a skinny dip in the coldest streem I’ve ever dipped my toes in, a dinner at the shore of the fjord, a night up a hell road (yes, steep as shit, eroded and with no bars), and with chantarell omelet for breakfast we were ready for a new mountain.
In Hellesylt, we had nothing to go on concerning where to bike, so we had to use our own heads. Darn. Not so easy when you are a hen. I had looked and looked and looked on the map, and finally decided that I wanted to do Steimsnibba. At first, I wanted to start from the village and head straight up since I thought that would offer the best ride down. Wrong. Wrong. When will I learn that steep in Norway means you-will-kill-yourself-steep in Swedish? Luckily, Maria had more brain. She immediately said she thought that the flatter trail comming in from the south of the mountain looked better. I’m pretty convinced it is.
With the sun scorching down on us, we left Steve in Karbo and headed up a tractor road up to the Säter, and from there up the trail to the crest towards Hellesylt. The trail looked amazing! Technical, yes, but ridable, and with a little stream that offered plenty of places for a dip. We thought we hit gold.
I still think we did, but of course the trail wouldn’t be a Norwegian trail if it didn’t also offer us some nice cliff sections as well. So, once again we practiced our skills to climb-a-bike. I think we should soon develop a special competence in doing that.
Once over the worst cliff sections, the trail was magical (again). A bit challenging to say the least, yes, but also with extremely flowy sections. We celebrated by taking fan-pictures of ourselves.
And then, we headed down. Clearly a Wohoo! moment.
From the säter, we took the small black dotted trail marked on the map instead of the tractor road. A very good choice! It had a good inclination, was rooty, curvy and way longer than I had expected.
All in all, Steimsnibba was, and is, well worth a visit.
Hm, so where to go next? We chose Sogndal. Mainly because we had seen a show on TV about mad Norwegians throwing themselves from cliffs around there. It seemed like a perfect spot for another hike-a-bike.
After a car ride that was a whole lot longer than we had expected, and if possible more beautiful, we arrived at 1 am in the morning. With no idea what so ever of where to go. Finally, even I was all in for camping at a place where camping was explicitly forbidden. Rebel!! 🙂 Njaaa.
Unfortunately, our hikes, climbs and in general pushing up those hills had taken its turn on Maria’s body. She might be superwoman, but even super chicks get worn out when they have a strained ancle and an inflamation in their wrists. So the next day, we took it a bit easy, for a while.
But of course, we couldn’t chill the whole day. So we headed up Storhaugen. Maria by foot, and me by foot and bike. Since Maria was hiking, we didn’t take the road up, but rather the trail winding up the hill.
I don’t know. I and Maria together have quite an impressive level of academic credits in our luggage, but sometimes you have to question our intelligence (but then again, I am a hen so my stupidity might not be so strange after all), hiking on a relatively technical trail in 30 C? With a foot that is really bad to start with? Hm.. I was happy though, I got to see exactly how hard it is to keep up with a person that doesn’t carry a 14 kg bike :). After 6 km, I was a wreck, and fortunately Maria was too. By then, the low alcoholic beer we had carried in our backpack was worth every one of the 30 norweigan crowns we paid for it (no, you just can’t buy regular beer in Norway, unless you earn a Norwegian salary). Although not yet on the top, we decided that our brains were just too overheated to continue so we headed down to Playa del Sogndal for a dip in the fjord instead. Maria by foot, and me on my bike and with a huge smile on my face. The trail is a popular bike trail in Sogndal. It is sufficiently technical to keep you on your toes and has enough inclination to make it relatively fast. In addition, someone has improved old dead falls so that they now constitute great drops to jump off. No, I’m not the greatest friend on earth sometimes.
We finished the day by, eating phat thai, drinking some very well deserved real beer, and watching the sun setting over the fjord.
We were ready to hit Hökfest in Ål.