Between the 23 - 26th of february, the Norwegian Alpine Club (NTK) decided to arrange a gathering for Alpine climbers in the Stetind Area. I don´t really have any big ambitions to do a lot of big and bad Alpin stuff, but this being in my backyard I just had to attend.
But after one of my friends backed out, I was without an partner to climb with. Seeing a facebook post, that yet another climber were missing a partner I decided to contact him. Of course, the curious guy as I am, was doubting for some moments, since I didnt know the guy, and he didn't have facebook either. I think the most of us have met climbers with wired, unknown and sometimes outright dangerous methods. Thats why I usually like to climb with people I know.
But this guy had good references, and after a nice phone call we decided that this could very well work. Helge as his name is, was apparently a very nice guy, and even more so in reality. Even though nice persons could be bad climbers off course.
Anyhow, we discussed ambitions and came to the conclusion that this could work.
But getting up north, after massive snowfalls, it looked more like good skiing conditions and bad climbing conditions. Especially because of high avalanche risks and lack of ice in the mountains. As a "get to know each other" trip we decided to do some nice and easy skiing for our first day. -We choose to go to the Stetind area, and we were not alone. This seemed to be the choice of many this day. The visibility was definitely not on our side, and soon our little team was the only one left.
After skiing some forrest lines, we soon saw that the weather might possibly clear up, and we decided to head for one of the opposite peaks, "Titiden". We actually came to climb the little peak next to "Titiden", from now on called "halvti-tinden."
The snow was surely dangoures this day, and the snow was collapsing all around us, but we kept walking in good terrain, and actually got very good skiing.
discussing our options and wishes before we met, Stetind was a highly wished peak to reach, for both me and Helge. The avalanche risk and bad weather, preventing visibility, was our greatest opponents for the moment.
Then snow had been unstable for quit an period because of strong winds, and there were terrain we were a bit worried about on the approach. With the usual shifting weather in Northern-Norway, we were as well concerned that the weather would close up, even though the next to days said sun.
Not loosing any chances, we decided to have a go the next morning. The weather-forecast said a bit cloudy until midday, but that it should clear up during the afternoon.
The walk up to "Halls fortopp", where the climbing really starts, is a pretty long 3 hour approach. The deep snow surely didn't do it any better either.
Helge started to climb, eager as he was. We enjoyed the company of another team trough the whole day, with Joel, Eivind and Erik being just by our sides.
Coming in pretty late the other day, we decided to have a late start and a real sunday hike. We came pretty late to the parking, and used a lot of time on the approach as well. Today we were heading for another, but much smaller classic, the Hamarøyskaftet.
On a sunday like this, we probably used more then a hour on the approach, which didn't matter to much since easy climb were awaiting us. I hadn't been on Hamarøyskafte for over 5, so the route was basically as new for me as for Helge.
Hamarøyskaftet is a mini version of Stetind, with only 512 meters, and with nice and easy climb to the top. A perfect sunday walk. The Climb is probably much more interesting in the middle of the winter, but now it was rather easy as in the summer, and we might just as well have been climbing in rock shoes for this day.
after having lunch and a coffee break in the sun, we were heading down before we would loose the sun. But after finishing the first rappel, we soon discovered that the rope was stuck. Since it was probably my fault, going to far on the rappel, I volunteered to up-climb the abseil. After going up to fix it several times, I finally managed to fix the ropes, and at the same time i found the rappel I missed the first time.
the gathering was only suppose to last for 3 days, but I was pretty stoked at having another day in the mountains, so when Carl and Olov asked for local advice i volunteered straight away. Seldom having guests in our home mountains, I was glad to show friends and common mountains lovers the place i grew up.
As so many other times, I decided to go to the Vargfjord-peak, the most diverse and easy accessible ski-terrain in our area. Neither Calle or Olov had never been in the area before, but both immediately saw the potential of the area, and we are likely to see them back.
We had a good day, as an end to a even better weekend.