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SCANDINAVIA

In July 2007, I visited the Lofoten Islands, parts of Troms, including Senja, and nearby regions of Sweden and Finland on a botanising and mountaineering trip. I used the excellent Walks and Scrambles in Norway by Anthony Dyer et al, published by Ripping Yarns in 2006.

Some route descriptions that are not covered by a guidebook are given below

Rundfjellet and Isvasstinden (Austvågøya)

This is an addition to the descriptions given in Chapters 44 and 45 of Walks and Scrambles in Norway. The walk was done on 30 June 2007 and took 6 hours.
At the end of Lake Storvatnet, a track leads through waste ground. There is a small parking area about 100m west of this point. Follow the track to a log bridge across the outflow stream. Gain the obvious ridge and follow it, heading for the point where electricity lines cross (cairn). A faint path may be discerned, always keeping to the crest. Follow it to the summit of Utjordtinden, 410m (1.5hrs) From the rocky top, go down about 60m on the west side on steep vegetation & follow a path along a shelf to a col below the SE ridge of Rundfjellet - the path goes along the west flank well below the crest to a flat marshy area and then vanishes. Go up snow patches and boulders and find a way through the rock band to an upper boulder field. The large summit cairn is beyond, reached in about 3 hours. From the summit, look for a prominent cairn on a boulder. At the cairn, another will be seen that marks the descent to the col between Rundfjellet and Isvasstinden. This cairn can be seen through binoculars from below. The descent on steep vegetation and rocks goes directly down for a few metres before traversing north to easier ground. There is an obvious path in places. At the col, follow a path to the summit of Isvasstinden. Then follow a good path NW along the summit ridge. Eventually the path leaves the ridge on its north side and descends through birch scrub and then through a plantation. It ends at a group of houses with a telecomms mast at Haugen. For those starting from this point, the path begins as a vehicle track heading downhill towards a wide break in the plantation. An unmade private road leads down to the main road in about 2km.

Russetind

The peak was climbed on 8 July 2007 and took 7.5 hours. Unfortunately, I did not manage to acquire a map.
Russetind is a fine peak, visible near the head of the Kjusakdalen valley, about 7km south of the E6/E8 on the approach from Tromsø to Nordkjosbotn. Take the minor road opposite the filling station in Nordkjosbotn (signposted for a school and a church). After a short distance it becomes a dirt road. After about 5km, there are two bridges across torrents. Immediately after the second, a vehicle track goes up through birch woodland. It soon becomes very boggy and insect-ridden - follow the obvious gap created in the forest by the track. After 30 minutes a crude log bridge is crossed and a good footpath starts. This leads to a fork just before a cabin. Take the left branch. After about 15 minutes, this path disappears into willow and birch scrub and bog. Follow a line of least resistance, keeping well away from the river. Three torrents have to be crossed - wet feet are likely unless, as I did in both directions, you find a fallen tree that can be used as a bridge. You soon get a clear view of Russetind and the terrain improves to dry heath. It takes about 2 hours to get to the foot of the mountain. Follow the left bank of the stream up steep but easy ground beside a gorge until it is possible to cross safely on to Russetind's lower slopes. Go steeply up right to avoid the first rock band. The next few rock bands can be negotiated direct. The final rock band at approx 1250m is best passed by a rising traverse right across a diabolically unstable boulder field. The summit is gained after about 2 hours by continuing directly up the boulder field (use snow patches where possible, but note that in the upper part of the mountain they consist of hollow, rotten snow that can trap unwary legs). The large summit cairns come as a pleasant surprise, being at the very top of the slope. The descent is by the same route in 3 to 4 hours, depending on whether you get held up by the torrents or lost in the marshes.

Keipen

Keipen is a fine, rocky peak overlooking Ornfjorden. It gives an excellent view of Breidtinden's sheer cliffs. I was there on 10 July 2007 and the trip, including Grytetippen, 885m, took only 4 hours. The map I used is sheet 1433IV of the 1:50000 Statens Kartverk series. A tourist map at the same scale that covers the whole of the beautiful island of Senja may also be available.
Park in the large bay at the entrance to the Fjordgard tunnel. Cross the scrubby ground above the tunnel heading for a col just east of Daven then go up steep ground to pte 588. There are bits of path here, on the SE ridge of Grytetippen. You can ascend directly to the top of Grytetippen, up very steep grassy slopes and continue to Keipen by descending easy slopes to the col between the two. Alternatively, make a rising traverse across the bouldery slope beneath the col. From the col, go up more boulders and heath to Keipen's S ridge and thence to the summit. It is a popular enough top for there to be a Summit Book lodged in the cairn.

Tromsdalstinden

Tromsdalstinden is the prominent peak overlooking Tromsø. It can be climbed in 5 to 6 hours from the town and so is a popular summer's day out. I was there on 11 July 2007 and took 5.5 hours.
To get to the Tromsdalstinden parking, find the modern Cathedral and drive along the road immediately to its south for almost 3km. The last 1km is a dirt road. Walk through the barrier and follow the track up the south side of the river (the Tromso fastland-Stuoranjarga Turkart 1:50000 map has it on the north bank). Ignore two side tracks leading to the river (as does the map!). After 3km, a marked path leads down to the river, across a wooden bridge and up through pleasant birch woodland towards the NE ridge. The steep path is badly eroded in places, but is easy to follow. The long summit ridge is pleasant and rocky. The cairn takes about 3 hours from the car park. To descend, follow the SW ridge (with red-marked cairns) to a col at 750m marked Salen on the map. The path makes a descending traverse under the steepest slopes before heading west to join the main track.

 
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