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Climbing Veggan from Uttakleiv Beach, Lofoten, Norway

climbing-veggan-from-uttakleiv-beach,-lofoten,-norway

Trip report by BestHike editor Rick McCharles

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

My best campsite in Norway was at Uttakleiv beach. $20. The only time I paid for camping in a nation where you can camp almost everywhere free.

Early next morning I had to decide whether to climb Veggen or the more popular Mannen.

For no particular reason, I decided on Veggan (“the wall”) which is a bit higher at 489m. Starting early morning, I had the summit to myself.

Like many day hikes in Norway, it’s an unrelenting climb with one good photo stop at lake Vasskarvatnet.

On departing Uttakleiv, I enjoyed the walk along the coast to Haukland beach rather than try to walk through the automobile tunnel.

BONUS ➙ more footage of the beach. Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

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Climbing Holandsmelen Hill, Loftofen, Norway

climbing-holandsmelen-hill,-loftofen,-norway

Trip report by BestHike editor Rick McCharles

On leaving the famed Haukland beach, I walked to the nearby trailhead of Holandsmelen.

The unmarked, but well worn trail is easy to follow and relatively bog-free by Lofoten standards. That means it takes 20 minutes before your shoes are soaked rather than the usual 10 minutes. ?

I found a possible campsite close to the trailhead parking lot — then hid my gear in a waterproof bag in the trees.

What I liked about Holandsmelen, relative to other Lofoten peaks, is that the going is not an unrelenting climb. There are flat sections on this half dayhike.

As usual, the views from the top are Lofoten breathtaking.

Looking over to Leknes

Here’s my favourite photo from the hike. I believe these tiny berries are edible.

Once again, sunset was long and astonishing.

AllTrails

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Climbing Mt Arrowsmith, Vancouver Island

climbing-mt-arrowsmith,-vancouver-island

Trip report by BestHike editor Rick McCharles. 

Mount Arrowsmith 1,819 m (5,968 ft) is the most prominent peak seen from my parents home in Vancouver Island.

It’s close to Port Alberni, B.C.

Alanna@VanIsle – Arrowsmith from Parksville in winter

The most popular hike to the top is called Judges Route.  Details.

  • 6-7 km (4 miles) roundtrip
  • elevation gain 1,000m (3,280ft)

Finding the trailhead can be confusing. Google Maps has it wrong, for example.

I used the free Maps.me app — that worked.

Maps.me

It’s 4-6 hours return.  Challenging.  Some exposure. A bit of scrambling.  Some route finding.  I was briefly lost 3 times.

There are some views on the way up.

On June 25th, 2020 I didn’t have much snow.

The summit is interesting.

From the top you can see from Port Alberni to Mt. Baker in Washington State.

I was inspired to try one of my rare panoramas.

Click for larger version.

Great day.

Starting up at 4pm I was last hiker on the mountain.

What time is blast off? ?

 

 

 

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History of climbing K2

history-of-climbing-k2

In advance of a trek to K2 Base Camp and Gondogoro Pass, I’m doing some reading about those insane alpinists that dare to climb the second highest peak in the world.

So much tragedy.

The 1954 Italian Karakoram expedition finally succeeded in ascending to the summit of K2 via the Abruzzi Spur on 31 July 1954. …

… 23 years after the Italian expedition, Ichiro Yoshizawa led the second successful ascent, with Ashraf Aman as the first native Pakistani climber. …

The third ascent of K2 was in 1978, via a new route, … by an American team led by James Whittaker …

I recommend K2: Life and Death on the World’s Most Dangerous Mountain. (2010) by Ed Viesturs.

Ed’s the Mount Rainier alpine guide who went on to become the most accomplished American high altitude climber.

Cautious and lucky, Ed survived 30 expeditions to the world’s highest peaks. And he’s climbed Rainier over 200 times.