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Granåsen is a ski jumping hill in Trondheim, Norway. The hill frequently hosts World Cup and Continental Cup competitions. The ski jumps are visible from the telecommunications tower in Trondheim and I’ve so far only seen them without snow. They are truly terrifying!
We started from the car park for the ski jump and we were excited to see ice on the ground.
The temperature was cool and we were dressed warmly and walked as quickly as we could so we didn’t mind. Amazingly, the muddy bogs that typify hiking trails in this part of Norway were crusted over with ice and that made hiking faster than earlier in the autumn. However sometimes the ice wasn’t strong or thick enough to hold our weight and a few times my husband sank up to his shins in freezing mud.
We joined a loop trail and soon started moving through different types of vegetation, starting in conifer forest which is quite dull through to beautiful alpine heath at the summit. I was enthralled to see ice forming in circles on the surface of a nice lake. It seemed to grow in concentric circles from a nucleus.
We walked at what seemed to be a reasonable pace but it soon became apparent that we were not and we tried our best to walk faster but it’s difficult in mud and wearing boots. Typically we hike 30 to 35 km in 5 to 6 hours in Australia in joggers but here our pace is half of that and we are struggling to adjust our expectations.
There were still a few edible blueberries to be found on the trail and we enjoyed eating them, huge, sweet and juicy and so different to the small and tart berries that we ate so many of in the late summer.
We saw a hut on the trail and walked up to it to buy a coffee but discovered that we didn’t have enough cash and it didn’t accept foreign credit cards. At nearly $6 a cup for filter coffee in an urn I wasn’t too disappointed. It was surprisingly popular with people walking and riding to the hut alone or in small groups, including some mothers with babies and people with dogs.
We pushed on and were pleased to enter the alpine section of the walk. It was beautiful up there.
We reveled in the bright sunshine for the first time in weeks and probably the last time in months.
There was a big difference in temperature between different sections of the trail with ice on some sections and others so warm that we took off our jackets.
At the halfway point we had used close to 2/3 of our time so we sped up but lost our trail and walked down a ski run then clambered as fast as we could up the near vertical embankment as fast as possible.
We got back to our car with 15 minutes to spare and hurried back to pick up our children from school. It was a lovely walk and spectacular weather and felt like the end of autumn and hiking season. The trail was only about 15km but we took some accidental detours and with the track conditions I was pretty tired afterwards!