It has been a month since I last published anything here, and in less than a week June is already over and we will be entering into July. Time moves fast but somehow it feels like it is moving far too slow at times. Life in the mountains might not always be the most exciting. It is a slow life- hectic at work and not so much except nature to experience on your spare time. Since I came back from Halmstad I must admit that it have been a bit challenging to set into the mountain environment again. Even if it is the end of June the temperatures are low and the leaves on the trees are still light green- and in two months they have started to turn red and orange. It is almost like the time exists in another dimension on this altitude. The weather is always present and you must learn to accept it- if not it might be hard when friends and family send pictures of barbeques in the warm summer night and long and sandy beaches. I guess that there is a time for everything.
Hence, the last weeks I have not felt so motivated to go out and explore my surroundings. I have been working on the sunny days and spent my free- and very rainy days inside. However, yesterday evening was indeed nice. 11*C and a bit of sun. After a quick dinner after work I dropped by Sofias Café & Bar for a coffee (best coffee in the village) and headed towards Hakkesetstølen for a walk around the lakes. I have mainly been cross-country skiing here during winter, and I have only been here once before during summer time (it included a mountain bike and a lot of stones on a rainy day in august last year), so I was not really sure if there was a trail that would take me around the different lakes.
I drove towards Kikut (rv 40 from Geilo) and parked on the main parking lot next the main road. It is also possible to park at Hakkesetstølen. Just remember that it is a toll road and you must pay for using the road in the main building at Hakkesetstølen. This is a rather common phenomenon in Norway. There are many gravel roads that will take you into the mountains- but just remember to pay for it. Someone will have to maintain the roads!
Hakkesetstølen is one of the “gates” to Hardangervidda Nationalpark. From here you will be able to follow trails towards Ustetind and Tuva and later connect to the extensive trai lnetwork within the national park. There are also trails that takes you down to the lake and the valley around Ustedalsfjorden and Tuftebrui. At Hakkesetstølen you will also be able to buy fishing licence for the waters that surrounds the small mountain farm.
When at Hakkesetstølen I decided to follow the trail that pointed towards Ustetind, and then I headed of in the direction towards Hallingskarvet. I rounded the bottom of the main lake and then continued on the trail. Since I only had been here in the winter I rather soon realised that the winter and summer trail do not follow the same route. After a while I left the trail and continued around the main lake in direction towards Geilo.
Since it is still early on the season the vegetation was still low, but in a couple of weeks it will be denser and not suitable to walk through. I got some nice views from the hills (the nature in these area consists of a lot of small hills, moors and lakes). After taking a break and admiring the view I started to walk towards the ski-lifts at Vestlia and after another 20 minutes I found the trail that led back to Hakkesetstølen. All in all I was probably our for 2,5 hours including some breaks. If you decide to stick to the trails I would say that it is rather easy terrain to walk in. Not too steep and it is easy to orientate since you on clear days will have a good overview over the area.