Norway Summer - Day 10 : Besseggen
In the morning it was dry but still cloudy. Gjendesheim lies at a relatively low elevation so the weather was better and there were much more trees than before. It's also located at the end of a long fjord and at 11 o'clock I only needed to cross the river running into it. There was no bridge indicated on the map, but as there were bridges at nearly all rivers, I had assumed there would be one here as well. There wasn't.
The shortest way to the other bank would take at least 1,5 hours of walking over a boring asphalt road. I really wanted to avoid that. There were a few small cabins a bit down the river, with row boats next to them. I decided to first make really sure one of them wasn't a ferry. They weren't, but there was a man at one of the cabins. I asked if there was a ferry or if I had no choice to make the huge detour. He offered to row me to the other side and asked if I wanted a cold beer. Norwegian people are the best. While drinking beer he told me about a nearby herd of reindeer several thousand animals big, but not in Jotunheimen itself. He also said I should be easily able to hike Besseggen, while the ladies in the cabin had told me it was considered one of Norway's toughest day hikes. Half an hour later he kindly rowed me across and I started my climb along Besseggen.
The climb was pretty busy and steep but the weather was (finally) nice and the views amazing. I was having a really good time, although the alcohol likely also had something to do with that. While getting higher the view kept getting better but the temperature lower. On the mountain ridge it was snowing and super windy. After a few hours I reached the summit, it was freezing so I only ate quickly and descended on the other side. I walked along another mountain ridge while looking out over the entire fjord and the adjacent mountains. During the descend I had to pay attention, because I had to step down steeply from rock to rock. Later a rescue helicopter arrived because someone had gotten hurt, that lucky person could likely visit the first aid department of the Oslo hospital, where the girl from the cabin worked.
After the largest descent followed two more climbs, but at least it was a lot less crowded there. It started getting late and dark. Just before the end of the route I took a different path into a valley which I planned to hike through the following day, leading me back to Gjendesheim. I pitched my tent at the bottom of the valley. The weather today had been really nice, especially compared to the last one and a half week. It was pretty cold though.