Rauddalen Area

Scandinavian Mountains over 2000 metres - James Baxter

AreasRauddalen AreaWalking Routes › Ra.11

Ra.11 Fondsbu lodge to Gjendebu lodge via Gravafjellet
5 hours / 15km
360m / 440m
Unmarked path.

Leave Fondsbu lodge and head north on the gravel track round the west end of Bygdin lake for ½ km crossing the bridge over the tumbling Mjølkedøla river.

100 metres after the bridge leave the track on the right which now heads up the hill and start following the cairn markers at the start of the path. Head along this shoreline path through waist high willow scrub for a km until you approach an obvious stream tumbling down from the steeper slope to the north. About 200 metres before this stream there is an unmarked path which goes up on the west side of the stream.

Start up this path which may be difficult to find amongst the willow scrub. The path, which once found is quite obvious, zigzags up the west side of this stream for a good ½ hour up the steep slope keeping 100-200 metres from the stream. As you reach the upper lip of the slope the unmarked path heads towards the cascading stream and it is possible to jump across it without any problems unless the levels are high.

Once you have gained the lip and crossed the stream follow its east bank up across pleasant tundra for ¼ hour to reach the tundra fringed Gravatjørnet lake at 1384m. Head along the south shore of this lake on the unmarked path for a km enjoying wonderful views to the Slettmark massif ahead and Falketind behind you.

At the end of the lake cross a stream and head east across 2 km of tarn studded tundra to descend down to a substantial stream which unless it has been very dry has to be waded. If the stream is high wade it at the stony delta where it flows into the pleasant grass fringed Grønebergtjørnet tarn. Once the stream has been waded head up the meadows on the west shore of the tarn under the steepening cliffs of Grøneberget.

At the north end of this tarn the path crosses a marshy area covered in bog cotton and brooks. Cross these brooks and then head north eastwards up the gentle lush grassy open slope for 2 km until the terrain levels off and gets more stony and where you reach a marked junction at a shallow watershed.

The fork to the west goes to Skogadalsbøen lodge and the fork to the east goes to Gjendebu lodge, both on the marked path Ra.4. The path straight goes to Olavsbu cabin on the marked path Ra.6. Take the east fork here for 1½ km as you descend down a gentle grassy valley with a small brook until you reach the upper bowl of Veslådalen valley.

Head north east down the valley under the large cliff of Gjendetunga where the path crosses to the north side of the growing steam on a seasonal bridge. Just after the bridge the path enters the upper birch forest and follows in down towards the green waters of the huge Gjende lake.

Eventually the forest becomes denser and lusher. The last 3 km through the forest are idyllic as you spill onto the fertile plain at the west end of Gjende lake. There are two adjacent bridges to cross over two arms of the Storåe river as it forms a delta. Gjendebu lodge lies just 300 metres beyond the second bridge.

In the winter and spring this route is also possible on skis but is unmarked. The ascent from Bygdin up the slope to Gravatjørnet tarn however is steep. It is not common, but given unusual prevailing conditions this ascent could be avalanche prone.