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Thread: Trip to Norway

  1. #1
    Widdler Sooper8's Avatar
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    Hi all,

    A couple of us are going to Bergen in August. We normally do day walks and have cycle toured in UK. We both have some kit (a Mini Peak II tent, Trangia, 3 season bag and a sleep mat) but just wanted to ask a few questions of the more experienced people on here...

    What litre ruck sack is a 'reasonable' size to be carrying everyday (or weight?), without making it too much like really hard work? I'm reasonably fit and do a lot of walking and cycling, but to be honest I don't want to make it painful and we want to cover some miles.

    And we are flying into Bergen and thinking of taking a bus over to Hardangerfjord area . Is there anywhere else within an hour or so on the bus from Bergen that you would recommend more for walking/camping? Or any specific routes you recommend?

    And finally - we will occasionally wild came and have never had to think about water filters before...I presume we might need one if we aren't on a camp site. What is a good one and value for money but not too heavy?

    Thanks in advance


  2. #2
    Ultra King Peter Clinch's Avatar
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    Have a look at the DNT hut network.

    http://medphys.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinc...ding/hmn1.htmlis an example of what's pretty straightforward on Norwegian trails. Because you don't have top carry a tent, bedding or nearly as much food pack weight can be reduced considerably. Even assuming you camp rather than use the huts you'll get an excellent idea of waymarked trails from the DNT site.

    Around Bergen, assume it will rain. As the old joke goes... a tourist asks a local boy if it ever stops raining in Bergen, and he replies, "I don't know, I'm only 9"

    Water supply for the huts is typically straight out of rivers (or melted snow in winter). I've never seen anyone bother filtering it so I wouldn't think you'd need to away from them.

    Pete.

  3. #3
    Widdler Sooper8's Avatar
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    Cheers Peter - that is certainly something I didn't think or know about and as you say, cuts down on carrying stuff.

    Thank you

  4. #4
    Widdler
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    Norway is big, really big. And there aren't many Norwegians. I haven't been camping there for a few years, but I nevdr saw anyone using a filter or any other water purification. Apart from a few trade-routes, it is pretty empty of people. If you feel the need for a filter, the Sawyer water filter is well regarded, is light and simple to use. A day in Bergen is well worthwhile; go on the funicular, visit the fish market, see the medieval quarter by the docks. From the top of the funicular the park goes on and on, plenty of walking there.

    English is spoken by almost all Norwegians, and they are very friendly.

    Depending on how bulky your gear is, a 50 Litre bag should be fine; depends on how many Norwegian pullovers you buy (the Dale factory shop is at Dale, on the Bergen-Oslo train route). Go larger and you'll just end up taking more gear. Flying insects can be a problem in some areas, at Scottish levels. And the sun can do serious sunburn damage.

  5. #5
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    I was on Hardangervidda last late Aug/early Sept. The water is excellent - as it seems to be in all Norway. I really doubt you'll need a filter.

    Unusually for that late, there was a bit of a problem with mozzies - quite a pain at times. But I understand this was a result of a very late spring.

    I was carrying food for about 10 - 12 days, in a 70 litre sac with smalldrybags on the side. Not sure the weight, maybe mid 20s? It was ok.

    One of the things about that area is it'sEurope's biggest mountain plateau. So the paths are relatively flat, meaning that heavy loads are less of an issue than in steep terrain. I was doing a horseshoe route from Geilo to Finske but had to return 2 weeks early, so never made it to Finske - not the area further north I'd hope to visit. Another time...

  6. #6
    Widdler Sooper8's Avatar
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    Many thanks Rob and deKramer.

  7. #7
    Widdler Sooper8's Avatar
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    Just a quick update on this - we are joining DNT, that was a fabulous idea Peter, the more I read their web site the more really appreciate you mentioning it.

    So, last quick question - on Norway Air, they have the same carry-on baggage size as others (55/40/23cm) and 10kg.

    I have a 65l pack that I know would be too big (and I don't want to carry that much) - but don't have a 55l pack to measure - would that be an allowable size if filled fairly full?

    We are trying to keep costs down as both on tight budget - so don't want to pay extra £60 or so on hold luggage.

    Any thoughts?


  8. #8
    Ultra King Peter Clinch's Avatar
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    Can't answer for sure, but there's the old game of wearing as much stuff as possible when you get on and compress the bag (I've flown to Norway in my ski boots before now).

  9. #9
    Widdler Sooper8's Avatar
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    Haha, great tip!

  10. #10
    ‹bermensch Trevor DC Gamble's Avatar
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    Very often good info on places on the Lonely Planet travellers forum too ok. The Thorn Tree.com.

    https://www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntree

    Trevor DC Gamble

  11. #11
    ‹bermensch Trevor DC Gamble's Avatar
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    And a very warm welcome indeed to OM Forum too by the way, Sooper8!
    Trevor DC Gamble

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  13. #13
    Ultra King Matt C's Avatar
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    "I have a 65l pack that I know would be too big (and I don't want to carry that much) - but don't have a 55l pack to measure - would that be an allowable size if filled fairly full?"

    I suspect a fullish 55 litres is too big for cabin baggage if the airline staff are in the mood to pay attention to the rules. I base this on havinga Lowe Alpine travel pack which is sized to be the maximum carry-on dimensions for most airlines and which is only 40 litres.

  14. #14
    Mini Goon Andinista's Avatar
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    I spent a few days pottering on the Hardangervidda last July based in Finse. As mentioned above it was still under heavy (but melting fast) snow. So couldn't do the walking I'd planned but ambled around leisurely between the hut and the glacier. The hut at Finse is fantastic. Has a microbrewery . Finse is easy to reach on the train from Bergen. You can book your tickets online from here in advance easily and cheaply. In fact the whole trip was very easy logistically. No stress apart from the unexpected snow levels.

    Didn't see much of Bergen due to the rain, but the DNT office there was really helpful.

    Flew hand luggage only with Norwegian using a 38l pack. As I was hitting had no need for camping/cooking kit so 38l was plenty.

    Looking forward to going back!

  15. #15
    Widdler Sooper8's Avatar
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    Trevor thanks for that link - lots on there to check out.

    Matt - I've been to GoOutdoors this afternoon and tried a few 45-55l 'light-ish' ruck sacks and they have a little perspex box for customers to put the ruck sack in to see if it meets airline carry on baggage sizings.

    There were a couple of these that would just about meet requirements. But an awkward check in person could possibly quibble the odds on the Osprey, but the Lowe Alpine Attack would be ok. Not my first choice bag though.

    So, still a few decisions to make but, I think we will be ok just with carry on baggage.

    Thanks for that tip about the train from Bergen to Finse - the microbrewery at the hut in Finse is holding some allure (perhaps more than it should?!)

    It all sounds great - thanks everyone! And thanks for the warm welcome.

  16. #16
    ‹bermensch Trevor DC Gamble's Avatar
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    Just like Sweden too does, you can enjoy fully immersing oneself in The Nature with Norway allowing wild camping practically everywhere ok.
    Trevor DC Gamble

  17. #17
    Widdler Sooper8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trevor DC Gamble View Post
    Just like Sweden too does, you can enjoy fully immersing oneself in The Nature with Norway allowing wild camping practically everywhere ok.
    We originally liked the idea of wild camping, but have sort of moved on from that purely due to the weight. Although the tent is only 1.5 KG, the 'extras' such as sleeping bag, sleep mat and then a Trangia & bits and pieces would perhaps make it just a bit too much weight for 25km-30km a day that we kind of planned for.

    So, we are now on the plan of taking less weight and staying in the DNT huts.

    Maybe next time we will wild camp.

  18. #18
    Widdler Sooper8's Avatar
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    Hi again- planning is well under way for this trip , but can I ask another question?

    I have been reading about DNT and their Swedish equivalent STF. Membership of either gives access to their accommodation in Norway and Sweden.

    However, STF is about half the price of DNT. We are on a pretty tight budget and this really appeals to save almost £30.

    My question is - am I missing something? What benefits would I gain by joining DNT as opposed to STF? I can see that there might be some train ticket discount in Norway by being with DNT , but whether that discount amounts to much or has so many conditions attached it might not be worth the extra membership fee is hard to tell.

    Can anyone shed any light on this and offer advice?

    Thanks in advance

  19. #19
    Ultra King Peter Clinch's Avatar
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    "I don't know" is the main answer here, but I note on the STF pages that "STF members receive discounts on accommodation at mountain stations and cabins that belong to the Norwegian Trekking Association, the Iceland Touring Association, and the Outdoor Association of Finland", but there is no obvious mention of "a discount" being the same as a DNT member's price. It could well be the case that you're paying less than if you just show up, but more than the locals in the DNT, in which case you'll need to do some sums.

    I'd ask directly, and then do said sums.

    Pete.

  20. #20
    Widdler Sooper8's Avatar
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    Many thanks Pete - yes, it could be a case of doing some maths. Maybe over the course of 8 days it would be so marginal as even out anyway. In that case I think I'll go with DNT and get the year book etc

    Thanks for your help

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