Saturday, 31 January 2009

Sunny Saturday,

Just another great day out in the sunshine. As I mentioned before most of the trails have been cut in the last few days, including Forbundsfjellet. Also marked to Grohogdbu and Eldabu huts and Dorfallet canyon along the Trolloypa. Making sure of the quality of the trails today I went out and tested the "Outer Circle", which is a route along the outer trails on Venabygdfjellet, covering more than 45km and going around Kyrkjegardsfjellet, Trabeliafjellet, Svartfjellet, Indre Uksan, Veslefjellet and finally around Trimloypa. Few hundred meters of climb (including Forbundfjellet, Kvandalen, etc.) and some amazing view points of the plateau. It has been a tradition here at Venabu Fjellhotell to keep track of results of skiers, who would like to have a physical challenge throughout their holiday. Some goes on BC gear and touring style on a long day out, some goes for a time and does it on racing skis (times between 3:25-8 hours) . They all have the same sort of drive: enjoy skiing and have fun in a beautiful area. My report: trails were in good condition, there were a lot of people around today, trails to the north had a bit different snow condition, since the sun was working much harder on those slopes (I had less grip there and seemed like i was not the only one who had the same experience). Temperature was also very different on lower and higher areas, having the temperature inversion in control. -15 Celsius as a start and warmed up, now we are back on -11Celsius at 10PM.

Friday Tour up to Klopptjonnet

Just a few words and pictures on our yesterday`s tour. It was a fairly easy one up to the North. The conditions were just perfect, almost no wind, sunny and the ski trails were very good. Around Flaksjoen it was pretty cold as the moisture was lifting up in the eraly sunny hours. Fantastic pictures of the surface hoar on the ground and trees also.

Friday, 30 January 2009


Good morning. beautiful day, -14 Celsius, light breeze from the North, good visibility. All trails have been cut and in good condition.

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Svabudalen Tour

We had a beautiful sunrise this morning, all the peaks were on fire. Our tour was a fantastic experience with all kinds of snow condition and terrain. Started at Gunstadseter and moving through the woods toward Svabudalen, we faced some very difficult snow condition down in the valley, very deep snow and some parts were like sugar. Once we moved above the tree line the snow became hard and icy in places. There was a great surprise waiting for us in the valley there was a massive herd of reindeers resting and eating there, amazing scene having about 800 reindeers just a few hundred meters from us. We carefully moved away not to scare them, helped by the wind too. We realized later on that we used up too much time, so we altered our plans and cut back through the open lands and the forrest before we finally arrived to Gunstadseter again. The weather was not really following the forecast, since it was pretty windy some places and overcast, sun was visible a few times, -8 Celsius almost all day.

Thursday, Tour in Svabudalen area

Good morning. 8AM: -8 Celsius, almost no wind, overcast, good visibility. Today we are going on a longer tour from Gunstadseatra back to the hotel along Svabudalen Valley. More than 90% of the trails have been cut recently and they are all in good condition. We are on blue wax. Weather forecast: stable weather (high pressure system) for several days.

Wednesday, 28 January 2009


This afternoon I was on a reconnaissance trip close to Gunstadseatra when I saw this amazing herd of reindeers on a hillside. Must have been about two or three hundred, it was difficult to count them and I did not have the time ;)

Fox track

We found this beautiful track close to Kloppjonnet.

Marking to Eldabu

Great day out, Lars, Karl Thomas and myself were marking all the way to Eldabu (DNT hut) on the Trolloypa. Adventurous trip with lots of deep snow traps for ski doos giving us a very good upper body workout. It was sunny for hours and the vista was just amazing, especially in the remote areas where we were driving, swimming and walking.

Clear Wednesday

Good morning. Finally we have a clear morning and see the mountains around us. Last night it was colder , down to -18 Celsius and warmed up for the morning to -8 Celsius (8AM) , at the moment (9:30) it is -11 Celsius, light air, very good visibility, still a few clouds around. I think it is going to stay like this today, but we might be lucky to enjoy a little sunshine later on.

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Kyrkjegardsfjellet Tour

We set out this morning in the fog (official forecast: sunny day , temperature around -10 Celsius) looking for some sunny spots around Kyrkjegardsfjellet. It was a lovely day with some very special lights and fog combination. The sun almost broke through the thick layer, but after a few tries gave up. Some areas were pretty cold, close to -16 Celsius with lots of moisture, which made the air biting in our faces. Tracks were in great condition and we enjoyed our day out. We even came across an elk track crossing the ski trail close to Holtesetervegen.

Cold Foggy Tuesday

Good morning. Just two pictures from yesterday, since you have not seen many recently. It was a nice day again with light breeze and good visibility (Muen was still in clouds). Today we have a nice combination of cold and low clouds as a start, which means it is probably pretty cold. -14 Celsius, light breeze, very low visibility. Almost all the trails have been cut including Veslefjellet and Indre Uksan Rundt. (Kvandalen is not cut yet).

Monday, 26 January 2009


Good morning. -6 Celsius, fair visibility, light breeze, overcast, very similar conditions as yesterday.

Sunday, 25 January 2009

Calm day

9PM: Very calm, -5 Celsius, good visibility. We had a lovely day today, no wind and lots of fresh snow. Lots of tracks have been cut today and more will be from tomorrow on.


Good morning. Sorry for the "pictureless" Saturday, but there was not much to see other than snow flakes :) Good news: we have got about extra 12cm of snow in the last 24 hours. Trails which were cut in the last few days have been burried under the white blanket. It is still snowing, -6 Celsius, light breeze, fair visibility. Trimloypa and Trabelia Rundt will be cut today. Last night we had a special dinner with some very unique dishes, all kinds of cold meat (elk, bear, beaver, reindeer, etc) , fish and deserts too. Every Wednesday there is also a traditional norvegian buffet dinner, which attracts a lot of people.
Back to the forecast: Little snowing today and a few days with none. Temperature range between -6 and -10 Celsius, very ideal and probably little sunshine is expected throughout the week.

Saturday, 24 January 2009

Windy Saturday

8AM: Windy morning, -6 Celsius, fresh breeze (pretty windy), fair visibility and waiting for the forecasted snowfall (7-10cm for today). I guess all trails we prepared in the last two days are history now. Hopefully next week will be more settled and we can start it over. Anyone who drives up here: don`t forget snow chains or good winter tires.

Friday, 23 January 2009

Myafallet Tour, ski+snowshoe

Another nice tour down to the waterfall. This time the conditions were very different since we have got a lot of fresh snow. We skied about 2 km and swapped to snowshoes and spent a couple of hours on them, some parts were a bit harder, but we all managed well. Nice views and great fun in the fresh snow.


Good morning. -7 Celsius, gentle breeze (less wind than yesterday), good snow conditions, most of the trails have been cut to the South and today we try again cutting around the northern parts, Fremre Uksan and Kvandalen. We are expecting light snow falls all day and more tomorrow. Wax tip: blue/blue extra

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Tour to the North

Despite the rough conditions (wind, fog) we decided to have a go to the North. We had cut trails up to Bollia which was ok (we had tail wind and the trails were still holding), but we agreed on turning around when the wind started blowing harder. There was almost no visibility higher up, so it was a sensible decision turning back. We went to Lake Flaksjoen and came back towards Lundes. Visibility was much better and had less wind once we were cruising along the lake. Weather update: -5 Celsius, gentle breeze. More snow coming tomorrow.

Foggy Thursday morning

Good morning. -3 Celsius, light breeze, foggy start. Looking at the forecast there has been some changes for the next few days. More snow coming :).

Wednesday, 21 January 2009


Just a picture from the southern part of Venabygdfjellet. It is amazing how much snow those trees can hold. It is -3 Celsius now, still a bit windy. Looking ahead we see few more cloudy and snowy days and closing to 70cm of snow.

Trail marking

I went out for a few hours to put some marking sticks back on Veslefjell Rundt and towards the DNT hut. It was very adventurous, especially when I had to dig out the ski doo from a meter of snowdrift. I found it very useful looking at the snow layers while I was digging, looks like we have a pretty wet fresh snow layer on top, depth between 25-50cm and a nice layer of ice and finally a band of sugary snow towards the ground. Once the ski doo broke through the ice layer it was nothing to do, only sink and dig :) Visibility was on and off as the wind was playing its game. Still -4 Celsius, gentle breeze with gusts, the pass towards Muen is closed at the moment.

More wind

8Am: Good morning, -4 Celsius, gentle breeze (it feels like there is more wind than it shows). Low pressure system is coming through, soon we are in the centre of it. Southerly wind direction and seems like there is more precipitation on the way. Stay in forrested and sheltered areas today if you are looking for good skiing.

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Windy Tuesday

9 AM: -6 Celsius, gentle to moderate breeze. It is snowing and blowing again, probably not many trails left clear from the cutting yesterday and in a few hours they all will be history. We try to cut a few trails today in the sheltered areas. Very good snow condition for strength training. Today`s special: Off piste skiing up to Indre Uksan. I am not sure how many people will do it ;) or how many will return. Anyway I keep you updated.

Monday, 19 January 2009

Monday tour

Another white day with more snow falling. We had a tour around Forestadseter and coming back off piste, which gave us a fair workout. It has been snowing in the last few days, so we have a nice blanket of this white stuff on the top of the old and transformed snow that we had since December. The colours are amazing and we almost had the sun out today, which brought some amazing light conditions into our panorama. More visibility now and about -6 Celsius.

Monday Monday...

Good Morning. -7 Celsius, light breeze, light snow fall, limited visibility. We have got another 5-6cm of snow last night, so it is looking great now. Hopefully it will continue like this for another week and we reach the meter mark, so we can relax for awhile.

Sunday, 18 January 2009

White Sunday

Beautiful day, interesting colours all around the trails. It is lovely to see the trees covered in snow and having a colour of white and grey mixture in the horizon. It is still -9 Celsius, gentle breeze, light snow fall. Recommended wax: green/blue. More trails have been cut, Trabelia and Kyrkjegardsfjell Rounds, Trimploypa and Buhaugen, Frisketjonn areas.


Good morning. It is good to be back here. 8AM: -10 Celsius, light air, limited visibility, light snow fall and we had about 3cm of new snow last night. Weather forecast: Low pressure system approaching Scandinavia bringing precipitation, so it seems like we will have snow falls on and off all week.

Saturday, 17 January 2009


Good evening. Late update: -9 Celsius, light breeze, low clouds, limited visibility. Finally I am back here, so hopefully I can start blogging properly again. Sorry about the short updates every day, but I was away and I only managed to gather the weather information. It has been cold here and we had a few centimeters of new snow. Trails have been cut to the southern areas. More tomorrow.

Friday, 16 January 2009


Good morning. -14 Celsius, gentle breeze, light snowfall. Finally the front has arrived and hopefully we get a nice blanket of snow in the next few days. Detailed updates and pictures will be back from Sunday on.

Thursday, 15 January 2009


Good morning! 8AM: Cold start, -17 Celsius, light air, clear sky. Looking at the forecast for next week it seems like the front I mentioned earlier will move in with a fair amount of precipitation. We might have snow falls every day next week.

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Tuesday, 13 January 2009


Weather update at 9PM: -4 Celsius, gentle breeze, hopefully we are out of the temporary summer season and back on winter mode. Trails are in good condition. Weather forecast: Front coming through soon, arriving around Friday and staying for awhile bringing a lot of precipitation...hopefully. More update soon.

Monday, 12 January 2009

Mild Monday

Still on the warm side, +1 Celsius, light breeze from the south, hopefully this warm spell will pass soon. The change is on the way according to the forecast and we might have some snow later this week.

Sunday, 11 January 2009

Animal tracks

Just a few more pictures of ptarmigan tracks. As you might know that ptarmigans make small holes in snow and stay there, it is mainly for protection (hiding from weather). If you are lucky you might see them flying out from these holes, breaking through the snow layer, leaving wing prints behind. These holes are also used as toilets, so you can find bird droppings left behind. I also put and extra animal track in our collection: it is an Elk track close up (found close to Myafallet), they live lower down in the forrested areas, commonly seen animal in Norway.


Good afternoon. Weather update: -1 Celisus, gentle breeze, expecting stronger wind later on, maybe plus degrees for tomorrow before we move back into sub zero range. Trails are in good condition, more cuttings are expected from tomorrow on.

Saturday, 10 January 2009


-7 Celsius, almost no wind, good conditions. Looking at the weather maps, I think there will be some precipitation in the next few days and next weekend with a front approaching. We would love to have more snow. The other day we checked the snow depth, it was surprisingly very low, around 35-40cm, but we also have to take the wind had into account, which swept out and reorganized the snow from certain places, so I guess we come to an agreement that we have a good cover on our trails, since we have been preparing them (all packed snow with almost ne vegetation showing through) and little a bit less outside of the tracks, maybe around 40-50cm. Some of the mountains are showing their darker colours due to the wind taking most of the snow away off from the rocky surface. Summarizing it all: good snow condition(older transformed snow) on trails, still on blue wax, expecting more snow in the next 10days.

Friday, 9 January 2009

Windy Friday and back on normal weather

Late update: Seems like wind is gone and we are back on normal winter weather. Clear sky, -7 Celsius. According to the forecast it will last for 2 days and we will have some warmer air again before it turns back to normal again. As I have mentioned before the Fohn wind can really interrupt our local climate in the mountains. Maximum temperature today was: +2.4 Celsius. I keep you updated.

5:30AM: We have been in the "plus" zone since yesterday evening, it is +1 Celsius at the moment. Hopefully in the next few hours it will drop back to subzero temperature. It is really windy now, so I guess the change is on the way.
As I have mentioned a few days ago, I will be away for a week, but I will try to keep you updated, especially on the weather part.

Thursday, 8 January 2009


Update: 0 Celsius now, light air, feels pretty warm, but the snow temperature is still holding well. I guess now we are getting that warm spell coming from Africa. High pressure system bringing up warm air from the south. It was really strange having -13 Celsius this morning and 3 hours later it was already -2 Celsius. Hopefuly it stays under zero. Even blue wax was good about an hour ago.
9AM: Good Morning! -13 Celsius, overcast, light air, extra 2cm of snow overnight, good conditions. Expecting more wind later on and cloudy sky all day, maybe some snow.

Wednesday, 7 January 2009


9AM: Good morning! -13 Celisus, light breeze, few clouds, no sunshine yet. Should be a nice day today with good snow condition. Yesterday we had an interesting weather pattern, having very different conditions throughout the day: snow falls, strong wind, clear sky, low clouds -almost no visibility, no wind, and little sunshine too. The clouds only managed to drop about 1-1,5cm of snow, but it was probably taken to Lillehammer by the strong wind. In the next few days we need to start cutting the trails again since most of them have disappeared.

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Back on milder temperature

Just an update again at 11:20AM: It is snowing now, light breeze, -4 Celsius.

Another important note: I will not be around from this Friday for about 7-8 days (attending on a guide training in the french alps), so I try my best to maintain the blog and even put some pictures and topics on, but of course I will not have any actual pictures from Venabu, only shots from my archive.

8AM: -5 Celsius, light air, nice and calm, overcast. Looking at the weather maps of the continent, seems like whole Europe is getting some milder weather this weekend, high pressure system bringing some warmer air from the south, but we will see how it moves and developes in the next few days.