How to get there:
From Bodø, drive E-80 towards Fauske. Note when you arrive at the
small fjord Valnesfjord with the big lake Valnesfjordvatnet inland on your
left hand side. Cross the bridge and turn left onto Hwy. 530.
Drive this road until you pass the the location where Hwy. 531 enters
from your left (this is an alternative route), then about 4 kilometer until
an intersection where a smaller road runs left, signed with Jordbrua.
Turn left here and continue to Lillevatnet/Litivatnet, then find parking below a couple
of houses at location N67.41006, E015.31953, elevation about 114 meter.
From the parking, proceed up towards the first house. Pass this on the right and
continue passing a second house, before entering the forest. The terrain/vegetation
is a bit awkward here, you cross a creek and continue north-west. You should pick
up a vague trail marked with red markers attached to the trees. Follow this steeply
uphill to gain access to more open terrain on the upper side of a cliffband (that you
have passed on its left (west) side.
Continue north in more open terrain towards the SW end of lake Nordskarvatnet,
Ascend the first, main ridge, less steep if you move further right (north).
The terrain is nice and easy, cross below point 551m, and head (slight descent) north
in order to ascend close to some birch trees near the lower end of the first of the
Nordskar lakes, elevation near 500 meter.
From here, ascend up the east ridge to reach the main crest of Nordskarfjelllet.
Next, traverse north and descend to the col, approximately 790 meter. Continue uphill
to point 930m. Be aware that (in winter) there may be a cornice along your right hand
side. From point 930m, the ridge now turns west, descend to the new col, then ascend
the slope towards the summit. The top part is steeper and may require some easy
climbing. In winter, this final ascent may be icy and require the use of a short
rope for added safety.
We had the annual national meeting of all the DNT mountaineering sections
in Saltstraumen, near Bodø, this weekend. Friday was reserved for skiing
and when I suggested climbing Midtiskartinden, Stig Anton said that he wanted
to come along. We left our hotel shortly after 0730, an easy drive to the
When leaving the trailhead at 0900, the weather was quite reasonable with good visibility.
The first leg involved crossing a couple of creeks and climbing steeply along a route marked
with red ribbons, up through dense sprouce forest. We were happy when leaving this forest
behind, as we continued uphill in more open terrain, towards the plateau at about
500 meter of elevation.
We had a short discussion about the choice of route, I mentioned that the ridge further
east (right) most likely stayed at or below 30 degree slopes. The ridge ahead was steeper,
but less prone to avalanches due to its southern orientation. We decided to climb the
east ridge, then curve north and cross the Nordskarfjellet mountain.
The plan worked fine and we continued along the connecting ridge. This involved a descent to
the first col followed by an ascent to the next hump before reaching the last saddle.
The weather now turned considerably more nasty, the wind picked up and clouds, or the same thing,
fog reduced visibility to a minimal level. We skied up to the rocks at the upper part of
At this point we left the skis and put on crampons. We had one ice axe each and this final
part of the ascent turned more tricky as we got higher. At roughly 1110 meter, we hit a
crux section, slabby rocks completely coated in blue ice. Stig Anton with lots of ice climbing
practice ascended this section with care, also using my axe on the return climb. I decided to
turn around here as this climb was sufficiently exposed to require a short rope for protection.
Too bad, being extremely close to the summit, but not quite there.
Our return ski was hampered by zero visibility in a complete white-out. We followed our GPS track
back to Nordskarfjellet, then beck down the same route. Visibility returned at the lower
elevation and we skied back to our car by 1700. A pretty good, 8 hour work out in rough terrain.
Many thanks to Stig Anton Hordvik for good company. Photo credit: Stig Anton Hordvik.