Both me and my boyfriend like to spend time outdoors and a few years ago we decided to go on a hiking trip to Norway. After many hours of scrolling through Pinterest and Google we found our destination – Aurlandsdalen, which is only a few hours away from Bergen. We decided to go on a hike from Vassbygdi to Finse, making stops in Österbö, Steinbergdalen and Geiterrygghytta along the way. So, in the middle of July we jumped on a plane to Bergen and after arriving there, we took a bus to the city. There, we bought water bottles and alcohol (for the Trangia kitchen). Then we jumped on a bus heading to a small village called Flåm. The bus took a couple of hours and the ride was a complete joy. We passed through lovely villages and of course, the most amazing landscape. Fiords, mountains and small lakes everywhere. It was amazing!
Day 1: When we arrived in Flåm we first had a look around and then we had to find a place where we could spend the night. After a while we finally found a spot and we put up the tent. The next morning we jumped on another bus and went to the starting point of our hike – Vassbygdi. We began our hike and pretty soon the rain started to fall. We kept walking and or gear seemed to stand the tough weather. At the beginning at least. After 9 hours of walking, climbing and slipping on stones we finally finished the first stage of our hike. We had arrived in Österbö.
Our gear was dripping (literally) and because of the rain and air humidity we couldn’t dry anything either. Cold and a bit disappointed we put up the tent and had some food before we went to ”bed”. My sleeping-bag was all wet and later on we discovered that it couldn’t be saved – it had already molded.
Day 2: When we woke up the next day the sky was all blue and the sun was shining. We managed to get a few of our things dry and quite pleased and happy we continued our next hiking stage. And up in the mountains we went. Steep mountainsides surrounding us and sometimes it was only like half a meter between the mountain wall and the precipice on the other side. The adrenalin was pumping for sure. But the views, oh the views. After hours of walking and climbing we arrived to our next stop – Steinbergdalen. By the lake we put up the tent and as soon as we started to preparing our dinner we were interrupted by a herd of sheep. They were quite interested in our cooking and then they joined us when we played card outside the tent. After a icing cold swim in the lake we fell asleep and the next day we woke up to a clear blue sky once again.
Day 3: The hike continued. We began by following the main road for a few kilometers and then we left it for a smaller path, heading towards Geiterrygghytta. Geiterrygghytta is a very small village with a few cabins, just by a lake. We arrived quite early so we decided to continue and cover a bit of the next day’s hike. So we kept walking. In the late afternoon we found a small river, originating from a glacier in the mountains. We put up the tent and chilled our tired feet in the ice cold river. We were all alone out there, no human being in sight and you could almost touch the silence.
Day 4: The next morning I woke up early and saw the sun rise over the mountains. A lemming watched me as I washed my face in the river. I sat on a stone and enjoyed nature. After breakfast we continued our hike to Finse. It was the last stage. This part was very snowy and we had to wear gloves and jackets. We climbed the mountain St Pål, about 1600 m and passed lovely mountain lakes and snowy landscapes. The last part was very windy and pretty cold but we were happy to walk down the mountains instead of climbing them. After a few hours we arrived in Finse, our final destination. We put up the tent one last time and had to fill it with stones just to prevent it from overblowing.
Day 5: The next day we took the train back to Bergen and checked in on a hotel. The feeling to take a shower after 4 days out in the wild was just indescribable. Also, to eat something other than oats, instant mashed potatoes or dried fruit was amazing. But being outdoors like that, carrying food and your home on your back, and not having electricity, water or a toilet – it makes you grow as a person for sure. You learn so much about yourself when focus is on survival rather than comfort and everyday luxury if you get what I mean. So, if you like hiking and/or being outdoors I highly recommend you to go on a 3/4/5-day hike. It’s a cheap way of travelling and you come back with so many memories, photographs and knowledge (and a tired and hungry body of course).