Langfjellene / About
The Langfjellene are the mountains of southern Norway from the Døvre down to Setesdalsheiene. Their crest pretty much follows the main watershed of Southern Norway with Vestlandet and it.s steep mountainous fjords to the West and Østlandet and it’s hilly forests to the to the east.
The mountains were formed in the geological event called the Caledonian Orogeny some 400 million years ago. In this tectonic collision Baltica (Scandinavia) collided with Laurentia (North America and Greenland in particular). The seabed between them was thrust up onto the land in this crumple zone to form huge 10,000 metre high mountains. Much has happened since then and these two continents have separated again, The Langfjellene of today are the eroded stumps of these mountains.
Today they only reach some 2,000 metres in height and many glacial episodes have carved huge lakes and fjords in them. Indeed the last glacial period is still ongoing in a few places. The big valleys these glaciers carved are used now to separate the different massifs of the Langfjellene. From the north the mountain areas can roughly be divided into Dovrefjell, Reinheimen, Breheimen, Jotunheimen, Skarvheimen,Hardangervidda and Setesdalsheiene. A distance of some 6-700km.
My ski route will miss the the most northerly and southerly ranges; namely Dovrefjell and Seterdalsheiene and will cover the 400km of the central five ranges. I will ski this route in late March 2018 when the winter snows are at their deepest, but the days are getting longer. The route I intend taking is below but the eventual route will be determined by weather and conditions
During the ski I will be staying in the DNT cabins. Some are self service and some are staffed. The former are about £45 per night with everything included, and the latter are about £80 for everything. The self service cabins have provisions, wood stoves and a supply of wood, gas cookers and comfortable beds with duvets where a sleeping sheet is required. The staffed cabins are essentially lodges.
The cabins and lodges are usually quite quiet outside of the week ending in Easter Sunday. During this week they are very busy, almost chaotic and are probably best avoided. Much of the trail is marked by wooden twigs or branches which are plunged into the snow pack around early March from a team on snow scooters. In bad weather these twigs are very useful as they are the only visible thing in a bubble of white when it feel like one is scuba diving in milk.
Because Norway is so suitable for ski expeditions in the late winter/early spring it is possible to make up countless variations and permutations in this fantastic landscape. I have included a PDF map (in Norwegian) which is available to download here:Winter Ski Routes and Cabins