Higravtinden

  • Higravtinden
  • 1148 m
  • Primary factor 1148 m
  • Location: Lofoten, Norway.
  • Location: North 68.35665, East 14.79242
  • Difficulty: YDS class 4.
  • Climbed July 12. 2019.

Information:

How to get there:
This mountain is the highest in Lofoten and the access is easy from the main highway 10. Drive Hwy. 10 from E-6 towards Lofoten. The highway will first cross the island of Hinnøya then continue to the small community Higrav. The distance from the Tjeldsund bridge to Higrav along Hwy. 10 is about 124 kilometer. You should look for a somewhat larger (grey) building on your left (driving from Hinnøya), there is a driveway up on the right hand side of this building. Park there at location N68.3572591, E14.754381. You should see come outdoors tables in the same area. This is the trailhead.
Route description:
Walk the old tractor road that runs gently uphill and curves left. Cross a low fence/barrier that blocks the road. Shortly after this, fork right (leaving the road) and cross a small area with some boulders. Pick up the trail at the far end. The trail continues gently uphill, now curving right. Immediately, the trail climbs what looks like a mini moraine, however it turns left half way up and runs towards some trees. There is a cairn there to indicate where the trail continues. There is a small creek coming down the steep slope on your right. The trail will ascend the steep hillside while staying left of this creek.
The trail is clearly defined and steep as it climbs uphill to reach a step in the slope. Here, the trail traverses right and crosses the small creek. Take water here. The trail will head over to a fairly well defined ridge that climbs uphill. Ascending here, mostly on the left side of the ridgeline.
The trail next arrives at the end of a snow gully that extends uphill slightly left of the last section of ascent. This snow should be there at least for much of July. If melted out, this route could be more complex. The trail seemed to continue climbing uphill (well to the right of the snow). It may be possible to follow the trail to the main crest, then scramble/climb along the high ridge going left.
The snow is gentle in the beginning, but it does get steeper as you climb higher. At the very top, the slope of the snow is somewhere betwwen 40 and 45 degrees. This slope should be climbed with normal caution. An ice axe and crampons should always be used.
From the top of the snow, a short and easy slope gets you to a local col. The route now continues to a higher col straight axcross (slightly left). One may have to cross a snow slope here, so the axe and crampons should not be left behind. However, in July, one may more easily ascend a short ridge (left), then bypass the snow slope at its upper end, between the snow and the rock. Reaching this saddle, turn left and ascend an easy slope to pass through a notch at the horizon. The terrain here consists of loose sand/soil, so some caution should still be in focus. You will top out on a fairly broad and level summit ridge. Remember where you came up, it is easy to start descending (the wrong way!) both left and right of this point.
Continue on easy terrain towards the (2 meter lower) small cairn. You will immediately see that there is a second (higher) cairn across a steep cut. In order to reach the true summit, descend right into a deep gully, a short way before the first cairn. You will reach the base of the true summit block. Traverse around to the right, pay attention to a small cairn showing that the best route stays high, ie. as far left as possible. This will lead you to the entrance of a steepish gully that provides a route to the summit. Getting up here is (hard) YDS class 4. The climb is not very exposed since you climb inside a pretty narrow gully. A boulder stuck in the middle is the first obstacle to pass. Climbing with the boots on on side and your back against the opposite rock wall may be a good approach where this gully is narrow. Higher up, the gully forks, stay left (straight) here. Pass a very narrow section, then climb somewhat easier rock to reach the summit, located up on your right hand side.
Comments:
I did this climb with my son Pål Jørgen. We had spent several days with fantastic weather down at Kjerringøy, then transferred to Svolvær for a well earned dinner and hotel sleep. We drove to the trailhead after a big, nice breakfast, arriving there around 0815. We started hiking at 0830. There was a layer of clouds, but we soon realized that we would climb straight throuh and end up with summit sunshine. The trail was steep, but very nice and easy to follow. The snow gully looked deceptively short and easy. However, walking up the snow took longer than expected, the slope also got a bit steeper than what it had looked like from below. We topped out and proceeded to the first small col. From here, we bypassed the next snow slope by going on its upper side.
Nearing the first (false) cairn, we immediately descended into the deep gully and contoured around the summit block. We did not notice that then higher path had avoided a narrow crack climb. We moved up the route fairly easily and arrived at the summit at 1130.
Gorgeous views, the clouds covered most of the lower land, but numerous peaks were visible above the clouds in almost all directions.
It had taken us 3 hours to gain the summit. A good, long break was called for. The view was certainly second to none and the clouds started breaking a bit giving some viewes all the way down as well. We started back down at 1200 - noon. The descent was smooth and we were soon back down to the snow, next onto the trail. We reached the car at 1400, it was time for our drive back to the ferry and onwards to the DNT self serve hut Lønsstua where we also had stayed on our trip going north. We were at the hut by 1930, the next morning we started driving at 0400 and completed 1200 kilometer back home to Bergen arriving there at 2000. Heidi had prepared a delicious evening meal. Thanks to Pål Jørgen for a vey memorable week in Northern Norway.