Scandinavian Mountains over 2000 metres - James Baxter
Areas › Glittertind Massif › Detailed Information
Glittertind massif is a high massif in the north of Jotunheimen with six mountains and a further six secondary peaks. To the south and east the massif is bordered by the massive and open Veodalen, to the west by the deep Visdalen and to the north by the wild Gokkerdalen and Smådalen valleys.
The massif is partially split into the well visited southern half containing Glitterheim lodge and Glittertind itself and the wild remote northern half of Trollstein by the seldom visited open flat valley of Trollsteinkvelven, which is a haven for reindeer.
The Glittertind was until quite recently considered to be the highest mountain in Scandinavia and even on the 1981 map its height is 3 metres higher than Galhøpiggen’s at 2472m. The actual height of Glittertind’s rock is 2452m but it is topped by a thick ice-cap which was recently thought to be 20 metres but is diminishing year by year and is now probably less than 10 metres.
Historically the massif was just the realm of hunters, with some summer farms in the bordering Visdalen and Smådalen valleys. The wild reindeer which one roamed the area are now managed as a semi-domesticated herd belonging to a collective herding cooperative in Lom. Glittertind was first climbed in 1841. In Visdalen Spiterstulen lodge started catering for walkers and mountaineers in 1836 but it was not until the early 20 century when Glitterheim lodge was built.
Access to the massif in winter is quite easy from Visdalen and Spiterstulen lodge in particular. However it takes a day to reach Glitterheim lodge from Sjødalen valley to the east and from the north Søleggen lodge and Smådalen involve considerable distances. In the summer there is good access from Spiterstulen lodge and Visdalssæter summer farms in Visdalen and from either Glitterheim lodge or the parking place 7 km downstream from it in Veodalen. Sålell or Smådalen are feasible starting places in the summer but they are rather remote.