Local train (line 450) once an hour to and from Oslo and Kongsberg.
Local train (line 450) to and from Oslo. In addition 4 daily express trains to and from Kristiansand and Oslo.
Express bus Timekspressen route 1 from Oslo Bussterminal Galleriet 40 minutes past every hour day and night every day. From Meheia 05 minutes past every hour to Oslo.
Timekspressen (route 390) to and from Notodden and Oslo Bussterminal Galleriet once every other hour, daily.
Bus services 3 times daily to and from Dalen when the canal boat does not sail, and more often to and from Skien LUNDE Daily canal boat service from the end of May till the beginning of September to and from Dalen and Skien. The next two weeks only 4 days weekly. After that date you have to take the bus between Gvarv and Dalen. LUNDE STATION 5 express trains daily in both directions. Bus every second hour to and from Skien. DALEN Bus services 3 times daily to and from Gvarv, Skien and Oslo. VALLE Bus services 2 times daily to and from Kristiansand and once daily to and from Haukeligrend corresponding with express buses to and from Oslo, Skien, Haugesund and Bergen. LYSEBOTN Daily boat service to and from Stavanger.
Magasinet - frilufteksperten siden 1991
Get Inspired - alt i trening og fritid
SURVEY OF THE 19 STAGES OF THE SIDDIS TRAIL:
- Aker brygge in Oslo - Høvikodden - Sandvika - Holtehytta, 29 km
- Holtehytta - Gjellebekk - Lierbyen - Eiksetra, 20 km
- Eiksetra - Lokkeråsen - Årbogen - Hagatjern - Hokksund, 18 km
- Hokksund - Ormåsen - The Skarra Silver Mines - Kongsberg, 24 km
- Kongsberg - Meheia - Sveinsbu, 24 km
- Sveinsbu - Fugleleikhytta (Svanstul), 20 km
- Fugleleikhytta (Svanstul) - Dalsvatn railway station - Akkerhaugen, 16 km
- Akkerhaugen - Gvarv - Gangsjå - Lunde Vandrerhjem, 23 km
- Lunde Vandrerhjem - Lunde quay + boat voyage on the canal to Dalen, 1 km
- Dalen - Grøndalen - Førsvatn - Hallbjønnsekken, 25 km
- Hallbjønnsekken - Bordbu - Hovstøyl, 22 km
- Hovstøyl - Valle, 17 km
- Valle - Bossbu, 21 km
- Bossbu - Storevatn, 23 km
- Storevatn - Ådneram, 18 km
- Ådneram - Lysebotn, 21 km
- Lysebotn - Songedalen, 25 km
- Songedalen - Bakken, 9 km
- Bakken - Preikestolen - Preikestolhytta, 16 km
- Preikestolhytta - Stavanger (bus + ferryboat) Total distance between Oslo and Stavanger 371 km
STAGE 1: OSLO - HOVDEHYTTA, 29 KM
Aker brygge - Sarbuvollen (footpath /local road), 10 km Sarbuvollen - Sandvika (coastal trail), 5 km Sandvika - Vestmarkveien (footpath), 5 km Vestmarkveien - Franskleiv (local road), 2 km Franskleiv - Rustan (trail), 3 km Rustan - Hovdehytta (trail), 4 km Altitude difference: 400 m
ON PUBLIC FOOTPATHS ALONG THE FJORD
From Aker brygge (quay) in Oslo you walk alongside the harbours of Frognerkilen and Bestumkilen until you reach the western border of the city at Lysakerelva. Here, at the mouth of the river, is the original site of a farm called Ljosakr, which literally means the light field. The name of the river was originally Fod or Fad, which means border, because the river from the time of the Middle Ages has been the border between the communities of Bærum and Aker (now part of Oslo). Immediately after crossing the Lysaker river, you turn right into Elveveien under the E 18 motorway and follow the bicycle signs in the direction of Sandvika. On the other side of the E 18 you must turn 90 degrees left to Lysaker staton, but a little further uphill, another sign tells you how to get to Sandvika. After having passed a number of roundabouts at Lysaker, you keep on following the signs to Sandvika. You walk across Fornebuveien, and at the next junction at the toll gate you keep on straight ahead along Kilenveien. At the next junction, however, signposted "Legesenter", you have to turn right along the pavement of the main road. At the next junction you follow Michelets vei, pass another toll gate and Holtekilen folkehøyskole, before you keep on along Fagerstrandveien.
THE COASTAL PATH IN BÆRUM
At number 50 Fagerstrandveien, you turn left down Sarbuvollveien to the quays at Sarbuvollen. Here the blue- marked "Kyststien" (coastal path) starts along Holtekilen. Soon, you pass some small beaches by the beautiful summer residence at Båtstø used by Reichskommisar Terboven during the German occupation of Norway. The best one is Høvikstranda at Veritas just before you cross Høvikodden and walk past the Henie Onstad Art Centre along the shore. Keep following Kyststien along the quays in Solvik bay before you walk past Sjøholmen, the island Danmark (Denmark) and Kadettangen alongside Bærum Rådhus (the city hall of Bærum). After a short break at one of the outdoor restaurants at Sandvikselva, you keep on walking on the footpath along the east bank of the river until you see the railway bridge. After having crossed the small river from the lake Engervannet, you pass under the railway and further along Sandvikselva until you see Løkke footbridge. This is Norways oldest cast iron bridge, which among many others, the artist Claude Monet painted in 1895. Follow the directions of the signposts for "Turvei C1" past "Sandvika videregående skole" and up along the east bank of the river to Bjørnegård.
THROUGH VESTMARKA TO HOVDEHYTTA
Cross Sandvikselva for the last time at Bjørnegård. From this point you follow the signposts of "Turvei A2" 600 metres on pavement and footpath alongside Slependveien, before "Turvei A2" turns right. At the parking lot at Emma Hjorths vei you turn left uphill until you cross Tanumveien at Tanum church and proceed past Ringi farm and finally reaches Vestmarkveien. Further along Vestmarkveien almost 2 km past the farms Kattås and Sørli to the parking place at Franskleiv. From here along a marked trail to Furuholmen and along the northern side of the swampy area Fløyta. You cross Gupuelva on a bridge at Øvre Fløyta and continue through Nordhagan past Moltemyr to Vestmarkveien, which you have to cross once more at Rustan. After some few metres along the forest road southwards in the direction of Sørmarka, The Bergen Trail follows the marked westward trail down to Eikestøa at Sandungen (319 metres above sea level). Lake Sandungen was formerly used as drinking water, but not any more, so you may gladly go for a swim here if you want to. The trail goes along the shores of Sandungen to its southmost creek. Further on a forest road the short distance up to Vesle (Little) Sandungen. Then along a marked trail up the valley Sandungsdalen and across Ivershogget to Asker Turlags self- service hut, Hovdehytta with 8 beds. The hut is provided with a stove for heating and gas and basic equipment for cooking, but there is no food. The hut is provided with candles, washing- powder and toilet paper. In every bed you will find a featherbed, a pillow and a blanket. Please notice that it is obligatory to use a sleeping bag! Hovdehytta is 34 sqm. Downstairs is a bedrooom with 5 beds, a kitchen and a living room. Upstairs is a small room with 3 mattresses on the floor. From Hovdehytta you have a mavellous view over the Oslo fjord. During WW2 the hut was vital for the resistance because they were able to keep a close watch of the activities at Skaugum which was the permanent residence of Adolf Hitler´s Norwegian Reichskommisar, Josef Terboven. The name Skaugum is a modern version of the original "Skogheim" (Forest home), which belonged to Count F. Wedel Jarlsberg until he gave the estate to Crown Princess Märtha and Crown Prince Olav when they got married in 1929. Apart from the 5 years during the war, it has been the residence of the Crown Prince and his family ever since.
STAGE 2: HOVDEHYTTA EIKSETRA 20 KM
Hovdehytta - Lierskogen (trail/ local road), 4 km Lierskogen - Lierbyen (local road / footpath), 5 km Lierbyen - Undersrud (farm road / local road), 3 km Undersrud - Storsteinsfjell (trail), 4 km Storsteinsfjell - Eiksetra (trail), 4 km Altitude difference: 500 m
DOWN TO AND ALONG NORWAY´S OLDEST ROYAL ROAD
From Hovdehytta there are 800 metres downhill to Bergsmarksetra Ressurssenter at Solliveien 131. Just walk across the courtyard and proceed down to the red- marked skitrack starting in the forest at the northern side of the field beneath the institution. Follow the skitrack some 200 metres to the junction where you turn left on the bridge across the brook, following the direction of the signpost to "Lierskogen 2,5". After a while you reach the local road Rypeveien, which you follow right down to Gamle Drammensvei in the centre of the village of Lierskogen. Gamle Drammensvei is today an asphalted local road. In fact it is Norway´s oldest public road. The order to build the road was passed by a royal decree at Akershus Castle in Oslo on May 2 1624. The most urgent part of "Sølvveien" (the silver road) from the mines in Kongsberg to Hokksund was finished in 1630. The whole distance between Oslo and Kongsberg could not be declared a royal highway with a guaranteed width of minimum 8 alen (5 metres) until 1665. The notice board also says that in the 18th century this part of the road was improved by the priest Vogelins. The clergy evidently had a number of extra duties in former times, but I take it for granted that the road was asphalted after his time. Keep on walking through the village of Lierskogen, and pass under the motorway. On the other side you stay on "Gamle Drammensvei" which is only open for local traffic to the residential area of Ytre Tveten. You cross the motorway once more, this time on a bridge, and keep on walking to Gjellebekk. From here you walk along Grøstadveien, which at Griserud changes its name to Høgdabakkene. There is no more asphalt, and you soon enter Gjellebekk nature reserve, where a great battle took place during "The Great Nordic War" between the Swedish king and Norwegian forces.
THE HISTORY BEHIND FREDRIK V´S OBELISK
If you are observant, you will notice Fredrik V´s obelisk among the trees on the southern side of the road. It is placed at the entrance of an old marble quarry, which was sporadically in operation between 1740 and 1960. If you get closer you will see a marble obelisk with a description in Danish. The essence of the inscription is that this obelisk is raised to commemorate the great and mighty king Fredrik V who personally visited this quarry in 1745, for which he has shown so much fatherly care. Count Johan Ludvig Holstein, the king´s companion, writes that His Majesty left Kristiania on June 25th at 9 a.m. and arrived at Skaugum in Asker at noon. Here he was at table for half an hour, before the company continued westwards. According to the count, the king personally inspected the quarry, but another story relates that the king had fallen asleep after his substantial lunch at Skaugum, so he preferred to have an afternoon nap inside his carriage instead of unveiling the monument in memory of his own presence in 1745.
THE PARADISE HILL AND SAINT HALLVARD´S DEED
From the obelisk, keep walking down Høgdabakkene and cross the main road Kirkelinna. Walk some few metres on the footpath on the other side till you see the blue sign showing the way to Paradisbakkene and Lier bygdetun. Miss Nella Nielsen, who in the summer 1829 travelled along this road by horse and trap, writes in her diary: The view from the famous Paradise hill was truly a paradise, smiling plains spread in front of the admiring eye, nice country houses, a grace indescribable. But when beholding the fertile Lier valley and the Drammen fjord, you should also bear in mind the dramatic events taking place here almost a thousand years ago. On May 15 1043 Oslos patron saint was rowing for his life across the fjord in order to save the life of a young woman unfairly accused of stealing. Unfortunately he did not succeed, and as a consequence both the woman and he himself were killed. In an attempt to hide this crime, the murderers tied a millstone to his neck and threw his body into the sea. But because both Hallvard and the millstone were found floating shortly afterwards, the Church made him Oslos patron saint, and his body was moved to St. Hallvards Church in Gamlebyen in Oslo in 1125 At the museum area of Lier Bygdetun in the middle of the Paradise Hill, you find the communitys oldest school building with authentic equipment and writing desks. There is also a garden serving as a gene bank for every species of Norwegian apples. At the lower end of the Paradise Hills you turn right, down Fossveien and left on the footpath along Ringeriksveien across the Lier river to Lierbyen, which is the administration centre of Lier council.
LIERS GREAT SON AND THE MORAINE FROM THE ICE AGE
Take Bruvegen to the right along the rear of the town hall, then straight ahead up to the remnants of the old railway station. You may have a break at the tables beside the old train and the station building. When you cross the main road on a footbridge you may have a look at the notice board about the trains rattling past here for about 100 years. On the other side you see the mansion of Haugestad, where the local council in Lier has held its meetings since December 20 1907. Stop for a moment on your way down Haugestadbakken, and admire the statue of Liers great hero, colonel Christian Hæg. He emigrated to America and died at the age of 34 as brigadier general on September 20 1863, as a hero at the battle of Chickamauga (water of death) at Tennessee River. Downhill at Vinderenvegen you turn left into Sauevegen. Walk straight ahead at the junction at Stubben through the residential area and across the fields up to the farm buildings of Saue. Turn first left and then right uphill Kirkestien almost to Frogner church. In front of the church you meet Undersrudvegen. You turn right and follow this road uphill past the farms at Eik until it ends at Undersrud. The view along this road is maybe even more remarkable than from the Paradise Hills on the other side of the valley. To the south you see the Drammen Fjord. To the east, the Paradise Hills and Tranby Church. Northwards, you see the great moraine which divides the valley into two halves. It was formed approximately 9500 years ago, when the inland glacier was about to withdraw after the last ice age. At that time the water level of the sea was about 200 metres higher than today, and the entire Lier valley was sea bottom. Today part of the moraine has been excavated to provide for the Lyngås motor- cross track, a fact most of the residents in the area do not like very much.
THE STONE WOMAN AND THE MILORG HUT ON STORSTEINSFJELL
From the parking place at Undersrud you follow the signs toward Storsteinsfjell along the blue- marked trail. At Undersrud skileiksenter you turn right, and shortly after the yellow turnpike the trail leads through the forest to the left. On your way uphill you may need to rest on the splendid bench known as Hermods plass. At Knutesetra by the gravel road, you turn right. The gradient gradually slackens and the landscape is more open. Some hundred metres after the trail junction at the top of the hills, you walk past the artistic and impressive Stone Woman. Shortly afterwards you may take a short deviation to Utsikten (the view) and the hut, from where the Norwegian resistance could watch almost all outdoor activity in Lier and Drammen during the war. The cairn on the summit of Storsteinfjell is 540 metres above sea level and the view is marvellous. Walk further over Eikheia in hilly landscape to DNT Drammen's lodge Eiksetra (32 85 52 12). Here you may put up a tent or spend the night in the shelter which you find on the left side behind the lodge in the direction of the lake. If you want to spend the night indoors, at least one person has to be a member of Den norske Turistforening and you have to book on beforehand the nearby lodge Garsjøkoia on "www.dntdrammen.no". It has 4- 6 beds and is situated 1,5 km (2 miles) away to the north east on the other side of Lake Garsjø. The lodge is opened by means of a special key which hangs inside a code box on the lodge. Dial DNT Drammen's office on telephone 32 25 51 40 or send an email to "firstname.lastname@example.org" to get the code of the key box.
STAGE 3: EIKSETRA - HOKKSUND 18 KM
Eiksetra - Lokkeråsen (trail) 6 km Lokkeråsen - Årbogen (trail) 5 km Årbogen - Hagatjern - Hokksund (trail) 7 km Altitude difference uphill to Lokkeråsen 200 m Altitude difference downhill from Lokkeråsen 540 m
The Siddis Trail crosses Finnemarka from Lier til Eiker. The area has its name from the many Finnish immigrants who settled in this desolate forest territory mainly in the 16th and 17th centuries. According to legend, one of the first Finns, named Matti, settled at the small lake of Lelangen. He was not a Christian and together with some of his countrymen, he built a heathen hov, a sacrificial site, at Himmerikstjern (heavens tarn) where they could worship their gods freely without any interference from the authorities. You start walking 1 km along the gravel road until you see Solvang on the right. At the junction, The Siddis Trail turns to the left uphill, first 250 metres on the northern side of Liseterbekken, then on the southern side to the dam on lake Løken. From here you walk along the road, which soon turns into a trail, but no longer than approximately 300 metres. Here is a junction, and a small green sign on a tree says that the main track heads for Tverråsvann. The Siddis Track, on the other hand, follows the smaller track to the right. Another junction after 300 metres at the end of a marsh. The Siddis Trail turns left along a couple of relatively dry bogs and down to the shores of lake Breivrangen, where you may have a swim if you feel for it. The Siddis Track now leaves the lake for a while, crossing three bogs before crossing a small valley and Toblebekken on an artificial bridge made of large stones. On the other side, you pass Ragnhildsstøl and the southern end of lake Vrangen before you walk uphill and meet a broader trail. Turn left at the junction and then after a couple of hundred metres, bear right in the direction of Nerdammen. At Nerdammen you turn right along the eastern shore of the lake before you cross the dam of the next lake, Mellomdammen (440 m). On the other side, climb Tretjernsåsen (Three Pond Hill) past the three beautiful ponds which have given the hill its name. You pass the summit of Hoggskollen (597 m) and descend to Smedsetra overlooking the lakes Solbergvann on the western and Steinarvann on the eastern side of the watershed. Continue a little uphill over Lokkeråsen (607 m) with a panorama view over Drammen and the Drammen Fjord. The sea level was at least 10 metres higher in this area during the Middle Ages, and Drofn, Drafn or Dramn was the name of the long narrow fjord of brackish water between Eiker and Drammen.
ALONG THE HIKING FACILITIES AT ÅRBOGEN
If you want to keep on to Hokksund, you have to cross the asphalted road after 1,5 km to the parking lot on the other side of the road. At the upper end beside the tablet you see a pole decorated with a white, a yellow, a red and a black painted ring. Follow the trail below Årbogen lake and cross the bridge in front of the dam. Continue along the white trail past the signpost "Lauvtjern 4,5" and further about 4 km until you have passed the southern side of the tarn Hagatjern. Here you turn left at the junction, first a short hill upwards and then down to a map and notice board. Further you have to bear slightly to the right approximately 200 metres across the brook from Lauvtjern until you reach the forest road, which you follow downhill until it turns into a local road named Lauvtjernveien, where you get a panorama view over Lerberg and Hokksund,
THE SIGHTS OF HOKKSUND
From the roundabout at Lerberg you walk along the footpath down towards the Drammen River. You pass two places where you can stay overnight before you reach the river: Hokksund hotel (32 25 05 50) on the upper side of the bridge and Hokksund Båt & Camping (32 75 42 42) on the lower side of the bridge. At the church on the other side of the river you may also spend the night at Langebru Gjestegård (32 75 47 00). No matter where you decide to spend the night, you should take some time to roam the old town called Dynge at the upper part of the bridge. This was the city of Hokksund until the 1890s. Most of the houses here in Old Hokksund have protected status and were built in the 17th and 18th century. You can also admire the 5.6 metre high Hellefossen waterfall. The huge amounts of salmon and other fish here have been reported since 1130. Until 1890, the steamship Nøkken (the Nixie) sailed on the river between Old Hokksund and Drammen.
STAGE 4: HOKKSUND - KONGSBERG 24 KM
Hokksund - Gorud (footpath / local road) 3 km Gorud - Skarra silver mines (gravel road / trail) 8 km Skarragruvene - Skjellbreddalen - Brennåstjern (trail) 3 km Brennåstjern - Aspesetra - The Kjennerud lake (trail) 8 km Kjennerudvannet - Kongsberg (footpath) 2 km Altitude difference: 350 m
LOCAL BUS OR WALKING 3 KM ON ASPHALT TO GORUD
Even this stage can be reduced by 3 km if you make use of the local bus service 117 marked Ormåsen from Hokksund station to Gorud 6 minutes past every full hour every hour, but only the first five days of the week. If you want to walk the whole way from Hokksund, you start on the pavement along main road 35 under the railway bridge. Then you turn right up the steep footpath to Ringveien which you follow and cross the main road towards Skotselv. Keep walking along the footpath on the left hand side of this road over the railway until you are opposite the Texaco petrol station on the opposite side of the road. Follow the narrow and steep Tranggata to the left, uphill to its junction with Bråtabakken, where a yellow sign tells you that it is 2,5 km along Rørenveien to Gorud. Soon you come to another junction where you follow the sign to Gorud 2.
ACROSS GRUVEÅSEN TO LAKE JUNGER
From Gorud you keep walking straight on along the gravel road for 1 km until you see a red sign on the left hand side of the road warning about Kryssende skiløype 30 m (Crossing ski track 30 m ahead). Turn left along the farm road through the gate and after a while through another gate. The road ends up in an area full of dross and flooded mines, which are the sad remnants of Eiker Coppermines. Eiker Coppermines were part of the Berg mines and were operative in three periods in the 19th century. The first period around 1818 lasted for only a few months. Later in the century, copper was mined between 1874 and 1879 and between 1884 and 1889. The work- force was over 100 men at its peak . The ore contained slightly more than 4 % copper. Turn right at the junction at the entrance to the copper mines and follow this track 1 ½ kilometres across Gruveåsen (Mine Hill) past two old copper mines until you reach a gravel forest road at Bergsetervollen. Stick to the main road in all junctions until this forest road ends at a junction at the end of the wider Junger Road. Turn left and follow this 700 metres downhill to a junction with a signpost where you turn right for the 2 kilometres to Kolbergsetra. You keep walking downhill to lake Junger (with a small public jetty used by bathers) and past the small lake of before the road ends at a parking place in front of Kolbergsetra.
THE SKARRA SILVER MINES
At Kolbergsetra you turn left uphill to the Skarra Silver Mines on top of the hill. The silver was formed by volcanic activity during the Cambrosilurian and Permian ages between 200 and 800 million years ago here on the edge of the geological Oslo field. This made the area Eikers most important employer during the years between 1770 and 1793. The notice board at the entrance of the mining area tells us that it was Ener C. Klemp who found silver here for the first time in the spring of 1769. The mining started the following year, run by The Kongsberg Silver Mining Company. Sakkerhus (dwellings) for 80 men were built here in the middle of nowhere, in addition to hestegjøpler (stables) for the many horses, needed to keep the pumps working in order to keep the mines dry. The whole mining project, however, did not pay. Although the discovery of gold in the area in the beginning of the 1780s created new optimism for a while, the mining adventure was definitely over in 1798. 30 metres from the notice board is an old solar clock from 1783 with the following inscription: Mr. Steemand was here in June 1783. If you find a stick, please put it in the middle of the hole in the solar clock, and you can check what time it is. Keep in mind, however, that the EU had not passed the law about summer time at the end of the 18th century. 20 metres from the sun clock on the same hill, there is another inscription: Discovered on August 16 by E.C. Klemp. Keep walking past the entrance of the 145 metres deep mine Øvre Stoll. Downhill to the Dørja river at the opposite end of the mining area, you will find an excellent place to have a rest at Pukkverket. It was here the enormous amounts of crushed stone for the road between the mines and Lurdalen (Kongsberg) were produced.
BETWEEN LURDALEN AND FISKUM
After having crossed the river Dørja on a newly restored bridge, The Siddis Trial turns left along the river for about 1 kilometre before it turns into Skjelbreddalen. At the junction you turn sharply to the right and follow the ski track belonging to Fiskum Sports Club over two relatively dry bogs and uphill to a trail leading to Hallhytta (named after a mr. Hall) by the small lake Brennåstjern. At the junction at Brennåstjern (295 m), you turn right following the signpost to Aspesetra. At first you follow a new tractor road up the west side of Storåsen (360 m) through open landscape and with a marvellous view in all directions. Then slightly downhill in the wood until you reach a good trail ending at an open area at the end of the track named Hestedalsveien. Keep on walking along the good tractor road to the right until it ends at the idyllic Grønntjern lake. From here walk on various paths in a slightly hilly landscape to Aspesetra with wide fertile meadows. From Aspesetra, walk along on a good trail ending at a parking place with a wide view to the south- east. Down at Krekling and Råen dramatic things happened between 1639 and 1641. An epidemic related to the Black Death killed 79 people, nearly everybody in this small community. The fleas first killed all the rats, which of course was an advantage rather than a tragedy. But when there were no more rats left, they attacked the humans instead. But as you can see for yourself, the community has fully recovered since the disaster 370 years ago. Continue on a good track in an easy landscape on a bridge over the river from Lurdalen and a little bit uphill before the track ends at a large parking place at Kjennerudvannet. Unless you want to stop for a swim, you turn left 300 metres along Bomplassveien and further 500 metres to the left along Lurdalsveien to the road junction at Rødshøgda.
THE SILVER ROAD THROUGH KONGSBERG
Continue downhill from Rødshøgda on an asphalt footpath following traces of the oldest part of Norways first road from 1624. 500 metres from the junction you turn right down the steeper Eikerveien, which still follows the trace of the old Silver Road". After 1200 metres, Eikerveien ends and you keep on along Bekkedokk under the railway to Storgata and cross the river on the bridge over the great waterfall to Old Kongsberg. Look for the signpost to Kongsberg Vandrerhjem Bergmannen (32 73 20 24). In addition Kongsberg also has two hotels on the other side of the river, where you just came from. The town is officially 164 metres above sea level, spreading out on both sides of the river Lågen, which has 3 waterfalls in the central part of the town. It was founded by King Christian IV the year after silver was found here in 1623. On May the 2nd 1624 he consecrated the new town Konningsberg. I 1770 the silver-mining industry employed 4000 people, and Kongsberg was Norways second largest town with almost 10 000 inhabitants. This industry produced 1350 tons of pure silver during the 335 years till the production ended in 1958. Today approximately 16 000 citizens live in the central areas. You will find the most attractive sights in the area around the church in Old Kongsberg. At the lower end of the waterfalls you may watch the forces of nature in a new park equipped with tables and benches. If you dont want to spend the night in town, you may keep on 8 kilometres through the mining areas up to the private Knutehytta (720 m). This will cut next day's stage by 5 kilometres.
STAGE 5: KONGSBERG - SVEINSBU 23 KM
Kongsberg - The Crowns at Håvet (local road) 2 km The Crowns at Håvet - Knutehytta (trail) 5 km Knutehytta - Meheia (trail) 7 km The Crowns at Håvet - Meheia (trail) 10 km Meheia - Sveinsbu (trail) 12 km Altitude difference: 350 m
THE SILVER ADVENTURE IN KONGSBERG
From Kongsberg church you walk along Kirkegata 300 metres southwards before you turn right at Rogstadbakken over the main road and the railway track, and further uphill along a narrow and steep road called Håvet, until you see the blue Ts just in front of the junction at Kronene i Håvet (the crowns at Håvet). This is a bluff where 11 royal crowns from 10 kings and 1 queen from Christian IV to Harald V, who have all visited Kongsberg, are engraved. If you want to have a closer look at the old mining community, you should choose the route through the old mining village at Haus Sachsen and walk uphill to Knutehytta (720 m), where you can eat and get accommodation for the night. Then you may take the direct blue-marked track to Meheia the next day and proceed along The Siddis Trial. According to legend, a bull discovered the first silver ore to its herders in the mountains a little north of Saggrenda. This is supposed to have happened in 1623. King Christian IV personally visited the place in 1624, and the mine was named Kongelig Majestæts Christianus Quartus, later changed to Kongens gruve(The Kings Mine). Within the forests between Meheia and Kongsberg there are approximately 300 large and small mine shafts protected only by rusty fences. The Kings Mine, which is the deepest and richest, goes as far as 1070 metres below the surface. Silver nuggets weighing up to 500 kilos have been found here.
ACROSS MEHEIA TO SVEINSBU
From the junction at The Crowns in Hovet, keep following the signposts showing the way to Meheia and Sveinsbu. At first The Siddis Trial follows an old mine track. At Brånabekk you have to walk for a about 1 kilometre along a military gravel road before you rejoin a track before you cross under the railway track and come into the main road at the village of Meheia. Turn right 300 m along the E 134 westwards before the track towards Sveinsbu turns off to the left on the southern side of the road. The track leads uphill over Kolsjøhøgda and over the Kolsjø river to lake Kolsjø. Continue uphill to Bjørkestul and Sveinsbufjellet to DOTs non- service hut with 12 beds at Sveinsbu (690m).
STAGE 6: SVEINSBU - FUGLELEIKHYTTA 20 KM
Sveinsbu - Eiangen junction (trail) 10 km Eiangen - Fugleleikhytta (trail) 10 km Alternative route from Eiangen: Eiangen - Sommerseter (forest road) 2 km Sommerseter - Fugleleikhytta (trail) 10 km Altitude difference: 250 m
SONDALSFJELL, WHERE NATURE TAKES CARE OF ITSELF
Go steeply downhill from Sveinsbu with a panoramic view over lake Ravalsjø. The track crosses the brook Arebubekken, passes the idyllic tarn Primtjern before you come to a forest road, which you have to follow for a couple of kilometres before it gradually turns into a track up Vindmosdalen (valley). A notice-board at the entrance of Sondalsfjell nature reserve says that for the next 2 kilometres, the track passes through a coniferous nature reserve with restrictions against all kinds of human pollution. That is why this part of The Siddis trial is only sparsely marked, but the path is easily visible, so this should not cause any problem. Please have in mind that some of the old wooden signposts show the way to Svanstul, which was the old name for todays Fugleleikhytta. Shortly after you have passed Surtetjern at a beaver dam you cross the county border between Buskerud and Telemark, which is also the town border between Kongsberg and Skien. Both the landscape and the minerals clearly tell us that in a distant past there must have been great volcanic activity in this area. The neighbouring local council area Siljan got its name because of the small amounts of silver found in the rocks.
OLE HØILAND AT LAKE EIANGEN
Having left the nature reserve, you soon arrive at the shores of lake Eiangen (632 m), where a lawn with a small beach, a fireplace and a well (see the signpost) 50 metres uphill invites you for a long rest. Uphill on the northern side of the lake, you can see the houses of Eiangstulen, where the legendary thief Ole Høiland (an equivalent of the British Robin Hood) was hidden by a pregnant dairy-maid, who finally betrayed him to the sheriffs officer for a substantial reward. Before he was caught, however, he got time to bury a valuable treasure, which has remained undiscovered to the present day. After approximately 1 kilometre, the trail along Eiangen becomes a forest road. At the junction at the mouth of Eiangen you must decide whether you want to spend the night at the non-service hut Sommarseter (600 m) with 14 beds or walk directly to the next DNT hut at Fugleleikhytta.
OVER NAREFJELL OR THE OLD CHALET FJELLSTUL
The trail to Fugleleikhytta goes to the right uphill to lake Steinbruvannet. This is an area where bears used to roam. The last bear was shot in 1929. The track crosses a shallow bay provided with stepping stones, but if the water level is high, you are advised to take the deviation around the mouth at the northern end of the lakelet. Then follow the old farm trail from Sauherad. It may be somewhat marshy along the tarn Krokvann, then along Kjerringryggen (the crones back) to the northern end of the tarn Kjerringtjern. If you have spent the night at Sommarseter, you will have plenty of time to take the 2 kilometre long deviation over Narefjell (805 m) with a marvellous view. The Siddis trial takes the shortest route to the abandoned chalet at Fjellstul and the lake Ostekleivtjønn, where it meets the track from Narefjell. Finally, go downhill along the lake Svanstulvann and over the dam to DNTs non-service hut Fugleleikhytta (570 m) with 7 beds.
STAGE 7: FUGLELEIKHYTTA - AKKERHAUGEN 16 KM
Fugleleikhytta Dalsvatn st. (track / local gravel road) 9 km Dalsvatn st. Akkerhaugen (track / forest roads) 7 km Altitude difference: 560 m
GEOLOGY AND HILLY LANDSCAPE
You start walking 1 ½ km on a forest road to the lakes of Flekkeren and Velenvatn. About here, you cross a geologically interesting border between the so called Oslo field characterized by former volcanic activity and the so-called Telemark group characterised by slate and quartz, and steep, light mountains. Keep on along the track to the small lake of Våkleivvatn and continue steeply downhill to a small gravel road and Landtjern, a small lake 3 km east of Noragutu railway station. From here, turn left and walk slightly uphill for about 2 km until you see a small meadow on the right hand side of the road, shortly after having passed the watershed. Here you turn left along the good track which gradually turns into a tractor road and a local gravel road called Tveitenvegen crossing the railway at Dalsvatn station. Keep walking straight on after crossing the main road uphill to Øvre Dale farm, and continue further along a steep track across the watershed to the idyllic lake of Igletjønn. Have a rest and a swim from the small meadow where you will even find a diving board. Keep on walking through an area, where the beaver has found a lot of suitable material, along a rather overgrown path alongside the water, until you end up on a much wider forest road at the western end of the lake. Follow the forest road all the way down to Moen sawmill. Cross the open area in front of the sawmill and keep walking along the gravel road to the junction at Ryntveit and further downhill the asphalted local road 1 km down to Akkerhaugen bridge.
NORSJØ AND PATMOS
Before you cross the Saue River, you should take your time for a deviation 200 metres to the left down to Patmos sculpture park with benches, tables and a lot of original sculptures. If you walk 700 metres further along the shore and beach of lake Norsjø in the direction of Kråkaholmen, you will end up at Norsjø Ferieland (35 95 84 30) which offer huts for rent. On the upper side of the road down to the camping site, you can see the small house where the famous fiddler Myllarguten was born (see the notice board). After having crossed the Saue river, you turn left through the centre of Akkerhaugen. You can spend the night at Norsjø hotell (35 95 82 11) or keep walking another kilometre to the cheaper and snugger Norsjø Ungdomssenter og Vandrerhjem (35 95 82 77). The lake Norsjø is one of Norway's largest lakes with a surface of 55.7 square kilometres, and it is 176 metres deep. The name is derived from the Old Norwegian nor meaning a narrow sound. The Saue River is canalised, which means that it is possible to sail small ships from Notodden to the open sea. Norsjø with its 15 metres above sea level, was up to the the end of the bronze age a fjord with direct access to the sea. Close to Norsjø Ferieland you may find lime-trees, some with a trunk circumference of 5 ½ metres. This is a species which has survived and been propagated by rootshoots since the warmer climate which existed many thousand years ago.
STAGE 8: AKKERHAUGEN - LUNDE VANDRERHJEM 23 KM
Akkerhaugen - Årnes (local roads / footpath) 9 km Årnes - Gangsjå - Stikkersmyrhaugen (track) 5 km Stikkersmyrhaugen - Lunde Vandrerhjem (forest road / local roads) 9 km Altitude difference: 220m
THROUGH THE ORCHARDS OF SAUHERAD
From Akkerhaugen you walk on asphalt a short distance in the direction of Norsjø Ungdomssenter, and then 3 km on a local gravel road through the community of Prestholt until you meet the asphalt again at the junction at Nesveien. To the left you can see Nesodden church, but you turn to the right until you after 1 km have to cross main road 360. On the other side you turn left in the junction before you take he first by- way to the right. It is a minor gravel road with a signpost Barn leker (Beware of playing children) going through Lindheim fruit farm. The many fruit farms in this area are witnesses of a warm climate. In fact ¼ of the total Norwegian fruit production comes from Sauherad. The gravel road turns into an asphalted footpath along the northern side of the sport facilities and the school buildings, before it crosses under the main road. On the other side you walk along the original main road, which has been closed for thoroughfare, to the commercial centre of Gvarv. The village has approximately 900 inhabitants. The name is derived from the Old Norwegian hvarf meaning bend or curve, probably referring to the headland where the Bø river opens out in lake Norsjø. Walk on over the bridge crossing the Bø river and turn left at the road junction. The next 3 km you have to walk on the footpath along main road 36 in the direction of Skien. You pass Teksten camping with huts for rent.
LAKE GANGSJÅ AND STIKKERSMYRHAUGEN
100 metres past the petrol station and Aarnes Cafeteria there is a former, but now eventually closed shop on the opposite side of the main road. Around the corner on the southern side of the abandoned shop, you turn right and walk up along the small local gravel road. Behind the first house along this road you find a wooden signpost showing the way to Griseryggen (the pigs back). Walk uphill along this track and be heading for Griseryggen in the next junction too. Keep walking till the track ends in a forest road, which you cross and take the track on the other side to Gangsjå. At first you walk slightly uphill, and then the landscape gradually gets flatter. In order to avoid a very wet marsh, Siddisstien, deviates from the main track to the right and shifts to a parallel track, so be aware of the blue marks at all the junctions. On the map, the route was automatically drawn along the forest road, Which was impossible for me to avoid. Suddenly you see lake Gangsjå between the trees, and here you really ought to stay for a while and preferably have a swim. The first kilometre after Gangsjå, Siddisstien goes through a somewhat overgrown landscape with occasional scrub, until it opens up at the meadows at Rønningen. But if you are observant, you will notice numerous heaps of stones on your way, which prove that there have been a lot of small farms here about a hundred years ago. From Rønningen you walk along an overgrown, but nevertheless even and good forest road, for some hundred metres down to the cottage at Stikkersmyrhaugen. At the junction where a gravel road starts off to the right, you stick to the old tractor road to the left alongside the two lakelets Kroktjønnene. The tractor road turns gradually into a good forest road downhill Langdalen until you reach the local gravel and later asphaled road at Bakkane. After 900 metres along this road, you come to another junction, where you turn right and walk 5 km along the local road to the village of Lunde. From the centre of Lunde you walk 600 metres further along Tyriveien to Lunde Vandrerhjem at number 51c where you can spend the night. Telephone 35 94 90 68.
STAGE 9: LUNDE VANDRERHJEM - DALEN 1 KM (+ boat)
Lunde Vandrerhjem - Lunde quay (local road) 1 km Altitude difference: 10 m
A WHOLE DAY ON THE TELEMARK CANAL
From Lunde Vandrerhjem you walk to Lunde quay where the canal boat takes you up through the locks and lakes to Dalen. In 2015 it sailed from Lunde at 1 p.m. daily between May 19th and September 6th. Then the next two weeks only 4 days a weekly. The fare cost 575 NOK. The Bandak Norsjø canal was built between 1887 and 1892. Through 15 locks between the sea and Dalen the steam ships Victoria and Henrik Ibsen are lifted up 57 metres. Though vital for the infra- structure at the time, the canal lost much of its importance, when the railway was finished. At Straumen after Lunde the boat is lifted through the locks at Kjeldal and Hogga sluser on its way up to lake Flåvann, through Fjågesund to lake Kviteseidvatn and under the Spjotsodd bridge to lake Bandak. These three lakes are altogether 60 km long, and on the same level, 72 metres above the sea. Just before the boat arrives at its destination, Dalen quay, you can see the entrance of Tokke hydro- electric power station, which is built inside the mountain. It utilizes the level difference of 394 metres between lake Vinjevatn and Bandak. You can spend the night at Dalen Hotel (35 07 70 00) or in one of the huts at Buøy Camping (35 07 75 87). No matter where you decide to spend the night, you should have a closer look at the old wooden building which houses Dalen Hotel, built in luxurious romantic dragon style. It was the famous architect Linstow, who at the end of the 19th century gave the original Swiss style a Norwegian character in the shape of dragon style. The hotels most famous owner was no doubt the colourful charismatic preacher Åge Samuelsen, who unfortunately died before he could start his career as manager of his own hotel.
STAGE 10: DALEN - HALLBJØNNSEKKEN 25 KM
Dalen - Vistad (footpath / road) 2 km Vistad - Stogebustøylane (track) 3 km Stogebustøylane - Gjestløys (forest road) 2 km Gjestløys - Breidvatn - Grøndalen - Road 45 (track / country / track) 6 km Main road 45 - Grjotstøyl - Stridsmoen (road / forest road) 4 km Stridsmoen - Førsvatn - Kuskardåi bridge (track) 6 km Kuskardåi bridge - Hallbjønnsekken (track / local road) 2 km Altitude difference: 848 m
STEEP UPHILL HEIBERGET OG BEAUTIFUL LANDSCAPE AT BREIDVATN
Start westwards the next morning 1.7 km through the centre of the village Dalen on footpath across Tokke river and past Vest- Telemark videregåande skule (school of further education). Straight ahead in the main road junction, but only 100 metres past the junction before the bridge, you turn left at the signpost showing the footpath to Heiberget. At first only slightly uphill to the overgrown meadows of Vistadgardane, where the track for a short while almost disappears under the high grass. But don't worry, you will find it a little bit to the left at the other side, but from now on the track gets extremely steep for about 1 ½ km. Please enjoy the marvellous view over Tokke before the track ends at the junction at the forest road shortly below Stogebustøylane. Turn right and pass the new lavvo (shelter) where you may rest in bad weather and even spend the night. Follow the road to the lakelet at Gjestløys, where you turn left along another forest road for about 1 ½ km to the abandoned farm Åsane. Keep walking along the good track uphill to the lakelets Nipediplane and Mjåvatn. Siddisstien continues through an open landscape, but partly without a track to the dam at the mouth of Breidvatn. Have a rest and a swim on the southern side of the dam. Follow the blue marks along the eastern shore og Breidvatn until you see the cottage at Sveigen and continue up to the watershed of Grøndalen, where you meet a good path marked with red and blue marks, which you follow Grøndalen to road 45. Then exactly 2.2 km westwards along the asphalted main road downhill to the junction at Turtlii, where you turn left in the direction to Førsvatn (green signpost) at the road junction.
THE OLD TOURIST ROAD TO THE GAMASFIT LAWN
The first 2 km you walk along the local road on a bridge over river Bora and uphill to Stridsmoen. Then along a good track except for a minor distance where Siddisstien barely cuts inside the borders of. From now on you can see lake Førsvatn at a distance, as you walk along the old track Turistvegen (the tourist road), which from the Middle Ages has been a link between Telemark and Setesdalen. For a while you walk on a low ridge, then along the southern shore past the huts at Asbjørnroi to Steastøyldalen where you meet a new road which you follow to the mouth of river Kuskardåi at the southwestern corner of the lake. Continue along the river and cross it on the new bridge. Follow the road to Gamasfitsletta, where people from Telemark and Setesdal met for gaman (fun and dancing) every summer. The last 500 metres you walk along the local road through the cabin area to main road 45 og Hallbjønnsekken turistsenter (35 07 15 60) where you can stay overnight.
STAGE 11: HALLBJØNNSEKKEN - HOVSTØYL 22 KM
Hallbjønnsekken - Kuskardåi (local road) 2 km Kuskardåi bridge - Fitbekk (unmarked track) 8 km Fitbekk - the mouth of lake Brårvatn (track) 5 km Brårvatn - Torfonnstøylen (track) 2 km Torfonnstøylen - Hovstøyl (track) 5 km Altitude difference: 450 m
ACROSS KUSKARDET TO HOVSTØYL
From Hallbjønnsekken you walk along the local road through the cottage area down to the bridge over Kuskardåi. Follow the direction of the signs showing the way to "Kuskardrunden 3,3 km" before the bridge and turn right on the other sign to "Kuskardrunden 3,0 km. Follow the road until it ends and follw the sign pointing to Fitbekk along the unmarked track up to the top of Kuskardet (meaning Cow Glen) and down again on the other side to Fitbekk. The reason why the track is not blue- marked is the owner og the ground does not permit it. It is fine to have a long rest at the cheese farms at Fitbekk (895 m) and even have a highland swim at the sandy beach of lake Fitbekkvannet, before you proceed southwards along DNTs from now on redmarked track 166. The track passes Gulborgstøylen, goes through the glen Brårvasskardet (915 m), along the southern shore of lake Brårvann to its mouth and downhill along river Brårvassåi to Torfonnstøylen. The last 5 kilometres through a somewhat hilly landscape to DNTs self- service hut Hovstøyl (835 m) with 12 beds.
STAGE 12: HOVSTØYL - VALLE 17 KM
Hovstøyl - Finna (track) 5 km Finna - Espetveit (track) 9 km Espetveit - Valle (local road) 3 km Altitude difference: 750 m
ALONG THE BISHOP'S TRACK
The Siddis Track follows the whole distance between Hovstøyl and Valle the old Bishops Track. Actually there were two tracks between Telemark and Setesdal: The Fur Track and The Bishops Track. The hunters, who wanted to sell their furs, preferred a route along the southern side of lake Raudvatnet and Fisstøyl. The bishops, on the other hand, preferred the northern route along the northern side of Raudvatnet. Probably the bishops have not been too eager to cross the mountains between Fyresdal and Setesdal. The track has probably got its name from Jacob von der Lippe, who was bishop in Christiansand from 1841 to 1866, and was the last bishop who walked along this track from Fyredal in order to visit the upper part of Setesdalen. From Hovstøyl you walk through birch wood, passing along a number of small lakelets, to Skorstøyl with a beautiful view over Finndalen. At this cheese farm the farmers from both sides met, when bishops and other magistrates needed someone to guide them across the mountains. Archaeologists have proved that nine farms in this area have been populated during The Stone Age in the third century BC. Probably it was The Black Death which caused the last families to leave Finndalen. Today Finndalen is solely a cheesefarm valley. Somewhat marshy when you walk alongside the northern edge of Raudvatnet until you cross the bridge over river Finna at lakelet Bjortjørnin. From Finndalen The Bishops Track proceeds uphill along a brook until you pass the isthmus between the lakelets Rappistjørn and Valevatn. Further uphill until you reach highest point along the stage on 1140 metres of the sea level at Rolvskvila, where there is a nice view to the both sides. Here there is a strange inscription on a flat mountain. It is named after a the giant Rolv. He had killed a man in the valley and was judged to serve his sentence here by spending a Cristmas night here at Rolvskvila. Originally The Bishops Track was marked by nyddinganger, meaning small stones placed on top of a large stone along the track. At certain intervals cairns were built. Today DNT is responsible for the marking of The Bishops Track. Further downhill towards Setesdalen to Tveitebø, where you enter an asphalted local road. After 200 metres you turn left, and from 300 metres after the junction, you walk along a footpath along the old main road to the centre of Valle. You may stay overnight either at Bergtun Hotell (37 93 77 20) or at Valle Motell & Camp (37 93 77 00). The name Valle is derived from an Old Norwegian word meaning meadow. The name of the valley Setesdalen is derived from the Old Norwegian word setr meaning domicile. In the old days people from Upper Setesdal literally walked more frequently to Ryfylke and Stavanger than to Kristiansand and Arendal. The reason was that until the first road was opened to Valle in 1847, Setesdal was a closed valley, because the river at many places filled the entire river floor. Rockfalls and slippery, steep mountains made it almost impossible to walk alongside the river.
STAGE 13: VALLE - BOSSBU 21 KM
Valle - Berg - Hylesdalen (local road) 8 km Hylesdalen - Stavskardhytta (track) 5 km Stavskardhytta - Bossbu (mountain track) 8 km Altitude difference: 1000 m
THE FUR TRACK WESTWARDS
Along the next stages, The Siddis Track is more or less identical with The Fur Track. When Norway was christened about a thousand years ago, Setesdal got under the administration of the bishop in Stavanger. The farmers were charged 10 percent by the church, and this tax had to be paid in Stavanger. Since coins were not common at that time, they had to pay their tax by hides and furs, hence the name Skinnvegen (The Fur Track). However, other merchandise has also been transported in both directions along this track. Archaeological excavations have proved that the track has been in use since the Viking Age. Over long distances up to 2000 years old nødinger, which are old cairns, can be seen. The farmers and hunters spent the night under protrusions where they built a kind of rough shelter by means of stones. Archaeologists have found 9 such night shelters between Valle and Lyse at the bottom of The Lyse Fjord. From the centre of Valle, you head southwards along the old main road past Valle church. In the first junction you walk the local road to the left past Skulesenteret until the road reaches main road 9 at Harstad. After 300 metres along this road, you cross river Otra on Hallands Bridge, and follow the directions of the signposts to Berg, uphill through 6 hairpin bends until the asphalt ends. Further 2 km along a gravel toll road crossing Svinevadsdalen to the parking lot at Burak in Hylesdalen, where the red marking of the track starts. There is no bus service from Valle to Burak, but it is no problem to take a taxi from Valle. The Siddis Track follows the route of the old Fur Track all the way to Bossbu. Somewhat marshy the first couple of kilometres, then alongside the foot of the steep Svarvarnuten to the DNT cottage Stavskardhytta (992 m), where you may spend the night. From Stavskardhytta somewhat stony and steep uphill to Prestvarden (The Priests Cairn) which is the highest point of the stage. If you have spent the night at Stavskardhytta, you have time for a 2 times 2 km deviation to the 1378 metres high mountain Svarvarnuten. From the summit you have a marvellous panoramic view over the valley as well as the mountains to the west. The track from Prestvarden passes past the idyllic cheese farm Svelingstøl at the entrance to Den vide Kvæven (The Broad Valley) before you arrive at the self serviced DNT hut Bossbu with 34 beds at the bottom of lake Botnsvatnet.
STAGE 14: BOSSBU - KRINGLEVATN 19 KM STAGE 14 / 15: BOSSBU - STOREVATN 23 KM STAGE 15: KRINGLEVATN - STOREVATN 12 KM
Bossbu - Ljosåni river 13 km Ljosåni - Såvatn's eastern shore - Storevatn 10 km Ljosåni - Kringlevatn (staying overnight) 6 km Kringlevatn - Såvatn's western shore - Storevatn 12 km Altitude difference: 450 m
ACROSS THE MOUNTAIN RANGE OF RJUVEN
Hilly landscape the first 5 km to Ussålega at the mouth of lakelet Skammevatn. From here rather steep uphill Heimre Skammestigen to The highest level of The Siddis Track (1350 m) before you walk downhill, passing the southern bay of Det lange vatnet (The long lakelet) on your way down to the river Ljosåni. Here you have to decide whether you want to make the stages 14 and 15 in one day or two. The river may be difficult to cross when the water level is high. The DNT cottage at Kringlevatn is based on self sevice and has 28 beds. If you decide to walk the distance between Bossbu og Storevatn in one day, you can avoid crossing the river at the ford, and keep walking sothwards along lake Såvatns western shore (2 ½ km unmarked route) until you again reach the red T- marked track at the southern bay of the lake. Proceed along the foot of Sågampen and uphill The Huda Valley along wide grass meadows along The Fur Track to the watershed at Vardebrotet. You walk past lakelet Vardetjørn along the western shore before you proceed downhill to the self- serviced DNT hut Storevatn. So far, so well, but if you arrive late, you should bear in mind that this cottage is only provided with 6 beds. If all the beds are occupied when you arrive, you may keep on walking another 7 km (3 hours walking) to the next self- serviced DNT hut Traumevatn, which has 40 beds at your disposal.
The DNT cottages Storevatn and Traumevatn are both related to the Norwegian businessman Thorvald Heiberg. At the beginning of the 20th century he bought enourmous mountain properties in the area between Rjuven and Sirdalsheiene because he intended to keep these mountain areas as a natural reserve for the future. For thousands of years the wild reindeer had roamed and fed in these mountains, but the intense hunting from the middle of the 19th century threatened to exterminate the reindeer. Heiberg wanted to protect the wild animals and the fish, and he argumented so convincingly, that he was able to buy these enormous mountainous areas at a cheap price. He engaged inspectors, and built cottages for rent for hunters and fishermen. In 1943 dr. Heiberg sold all his properties to a public foundation, which he personally named Njardarheim Veidemark. The foundation was sanctioned by the minister precident Vidkun Quisling. After the war the properties were transferred to the Norwegian state.
STAGE 15: STOREVATN - TRAUMEVATN 7 KM STAGE 15 / 16: STOREVATN - ÅDNERAM 18 KM
Storevatn - Traumevatn 7 km Traumevatn - Elsvatnet 4 km Elsvatnet - Ådneram (construction road) 7 km Altitude difference: 400 m
IN THE REALM OF THE WILD REINDEER
Choose the track along the western shore of lake Storevatn to the brook at the outlet, which you cross on a bridge. Keep walking along Stordalen to river Tarjesåni, which you also cross on a bridge. Further downhill you have to cross a small brook at a ford on stepping stones, before you enter the luxuriant Sirdal country, walk past the Heiberg cottage Osealegå and arrive at the DNT cottage at the southern end of lake Traumevatn. From this self- serviced hut with 40 beds, you have to walk for about 2 hours through birch grown hills before reaching the construction road at lake Elsvatnet. Turn left at the junction and follow the road for about 7 km alongside the river Flatstøåni until you, shortly after having passed the turnpike, see the non- serviced DNT- lodge where the river widens at Ådneram. Because the cottage is non- serviced, it might be an idea to make a detour to the local grocery shop at nearby Suleskar. The DNT- lodge has 47 beds. Thorvald Heiberg had scarcely imagined that a construction road for heavy trucks would ever be built to the dam of Svartevatn, and even less that great areas of the reindeer pastures should be flooded by enormous water reservoirs for the production of hydro electric power. The water reservoir behind The Svartevass Dam has turned four original mountain lakes into one giant reservoir. The original track of the Fur Track between the lakes Svartevatn and Auravatn, lies to day flooded on the bottom of the reservoir. The mountain areas to the west of Setesdal have from times immemorial been the home of the wild reindeer. For the time being the number of individuals is estimated to approximately 3000. The animals are small, however because of the scarcity of good winter pastures. As far back as since 1957 there have been plans of giving remaining parts of the relatively untouched mountain areas the status of national reserve, in order to take better care of the wild reindeer, but nothing has happened so far.
STAGE 16: ÅDNERAM - LYSEBOTN 21 KM
Ådneram - the bridge across river Sira (track) 5 km Sira - the track above lake Skabakktjørn (county road) 4 km Skabakktjørn - Lyse (track) 9 km Lyse - Lysebotn (road) 3 km Altitude difference: 960 m
This stage follows the old track from Upper Sirdal to the sea at Lysebotn. From Ådneram to the brigde across river Sira through luxuriant birch forest. Further along the county road past Grytdalslega to the watershed after lake Skabakktjørn, where the DNT- sign shows you the way to Lysebotn. You walk along the northern shores of lake Andersvatnet in the magnificent but barren Lyse Fjord- landscape with a marvellous view from the highest point of the stage on the top of Vardekleivane. Very steep down Indre Lysebrekka. If you are afraid of heights, you may consider to walk along the road instead of the track to the Lyse fjord. Down in the Lyse valley, you cross the Lyse river on a stone brigde. From Lysegardane along the road, the last 3 kilometres to Lysebotn. Spend the night at Lysebotn Turisthytte (94 82 66 02) which is owned by Stavanger turistforening. From Lysebotn daily boat service from and to Stavanger. It is up to you to decide whether you want to experience the marvellous Lyse Fjord from the ships deck or from the mountains on the northern shore of the fjord.
STAGE 17: LYSEBOTN - SONGEDALEN 25 KM
Lysebotn - along the municipal road 15 km The municipal road - Fylgjesdal - Songedalen (track) 10 km Altitude difference: 725 m
First 20 km along the municipal road up the mountains at the northern side0 of the Lyse Fjord. Then 4 km along the track down to Fylgjesdal and further along to the non- seviced lodge Songedalen.
STAGE 18: SONGEDALEN - BAKKEN 9 KM Songedalen - Songesand (track/ municipal road) 4 km Songesand - Bakken 5 km Altitude difference: 400 m
From Songedalen you walk along the farm road down the valley until it crosses the river. Then proceed along the track along the northern side of the river until you meet the road which you follw down to the ferry quay at Songesand. From Songesand you walk along the shore of The Lyse Fjord 4 rather difficult kilometres until you see the quay of Bakken. Then a steeply upwards to the non- seviced lodge at Bakken farm. The stage is estimated to take 5 hours. There is a spectactular view- point 100 metres to the west of the farm. Walk the track across the meadow, go through the gate of the fence and enjoy the sunset.
STAGE 19: BAKKEN - PREIKESTOLHYTTA 16 KM
Bakken - Preikestolen 12 km Preikestolen - Preikestolhytta 4 km Altitude difference: 706 m
Start walking 1 km northwards from Bakken farm before you turn left at the first junction. Then after 3 km you turn right in the next junction about 1 km after you have passed the farms Øvre (upper) and Midtre (middle) Brattlia steep hill). From this junction the track first goes somewhat upwards along the steep hillside from 280 metres above the sea level to 520 metres above the sea level. Further somewhat downhill and along the northern shore of Skogavatnet (400 metres above the sea level). Then a little downhill at the foot of Troppeknuten and then upwards. At the watershed below Lammatoknuten, you turn left 1.8 km to the famous plateau Preikestolen (The Pulpit) vertically 600 metres above the water. After having enjoyed the marvellous view over Lysefjorden, you turn back the 1.8 km to the track where you came from and now you turn left and walk the last 3 km down to Preikestolhytta. Preikestolhytta is one of DNTs newest and largest full- serviced lodges with 2- and 4- bedrooms. Telephone 51 74 20 74.
PREIKESTOLHYTTA - STAVANGER
Bus connection to Tau corresponding with the local ferryboat to Fiskepirterminalen in Stavanger.