• Reitetinden
  • 1260 m.
  • Primary factor 1062 m.
  • Location: North 68.82230, East 017.62975 (GPS at the summit)
  • Difficulty: (YDS) class 3.
  • Climbed September 1. 2012.


How to get there:
Reitetinden is located near Sjøvegan in the southern part of Troms. Take Hwy. 851 west from Hwy. E-6, thias is about 9 kilometer south of Setermoen. Just before entering the central area of Sjøvegan, turn sharp left on Hwy. 84. Measure from here. Drive 3.3 kilometer, then turn right on a smaller road with a sign for Lavangsnes. Continue to kilometer 16.9. You are now in the small place called Håkavika. The trail is signed going uphill (left), parking is straight ahead on your right hand side. This is the trailhead, location N68.87508, E017.58626, elevation about 8 meter.
Route description:
Note: there are two summits called Reitetinden (or Reitetindan) in the same mountain group. The sign for Reitetinden along this route, points to the lower (wrong) Reitetinden.

Follow the road uphill, very soon passing a gate. The road continues as a somewhat overgrown forest/farm road. Near its end, the trail forks left and uphill, there is red paint marks as well as a sign for Høgfjellet and Reitetinden. The trail climbs and soon crosses a small creek, then bends more uphill and climbs between the creek just crossed and the main creek that runs a bit further right. Soon, the terrain levels more off and the trail runs more right and gains a very nice plateau with meadows and lakes. There is a new cairn and a sign for Reitetinden here. Continue to follow the trail, invisible at times, but well marked with red dots on rocks and cairns. The trail bends right and heads directly uphill along a broad ridge (right in the picture) in order to climb across an obvious (horizontal) skyline higher up. This ridge has location N68.84789, E017.58840, elevation slightly above 700 meter
From here, the red marked trail runs downhill to the main drainage of this basin. Keeping in mind that this trail runs to another peak, look for a small lake on your left, just before reaching the bottom of the valley. Turn this pond on its right side, then head uphill along an easy, small ridge that starts higher up. Now, start an ascending traverse going right. Stay on grass and avoid steeper slopes. There are several options as you traverse below the very steep and good-looking Elveskardtind. As you get higher up, aim for the lowest saddle between points 1258 (left) and 1252 (right). (All the way right in the picture.) You will cross some easy angled snow that provides some smooth going. The slope is very nice and easy all the way to the main crest, located at N68.83052, E017.62383, elevation about 1220 meter. The ridge is rather complicated to follow, but there is a large (permanent) snow field on the east side of the ridge. With crampons and an ice axe, do a descending traverse (going right), cross some short rock band and connect with snow that runs up toward the lowest saddle between Reitetinden and point 1252. You may have to descend perhaps as much as down near 1130 meter, but never as low as the lower part of the snow field. As soon as you have crossed the rocks (only 1-2 meter), continue the traverse across a slightly steeper slope, then ascend the snow to the obvious point where it connects nicely with the saddle. This picture shows most of the route from the first col on the ridge (picture taken from the summit.) This point has location N68.82521, E017.62729, elevation about 1160 meter.
From here, ascend to the top of the ridge, then scramble along the top ridge to the summit. There are a couple of points where you need to descend, however this scramble never exceeds (YDS) class 3, most of it is quite easy and the ridge is fairly wide all the way. The summit is very nice and there is an impressive cairn on the top.

Note: I did the route described above. It is not difficult for any experienced mountain person familiar with the use of crampons and an ice axe, the axe only for added safety. However, it is very likely that an alternative route would be to follow the bottom of the main basin until you pass point 1252 high up on your left hand side. One could then ascend to the same col on the ridge, but avoid the traverse on snow. I have not checked this out, but find such a route very likely. It would be a bit longer, but avoid some loss of elevation (on the snow field). Overall, I would still think that my ridge route is a more interesting mountaineering experience. It also offers the possibility to ascend Elveskardtinden at 1258 meter, this is likely to require a party of at least 2 and very possibly a rope for added protection.

Note that the current Norwegian map shows an elevation of 1262 meter (Online map: 1261.72 m), however this is measured to the top of the cairn, thus the proper elevation of natural rock is 1260 meter. (Private communication with the Norwegian Mapping Authority.)
I knew this climb would be interesting. I had not been able to find a single report or description on the net, thus my own study of the map and then hope that there would not be any big problems.
I considered starting from Sommerset on the north side, then hike to Melkevatnet and ascend to the permanent snow from there, but ended up starting from Håkavika further west.
I started from my car at 0915 and followed the good trail all the way to lake Isvatnet (676 meter). From there, I got a good view of the slope connecting with the top ridge and quickly decided to ascend directly, despite my original plan of going further into the basin, then look for a route to the summit. This decision carried some risks. I would end up on the ridge with the 1252 summit between me and Reitetinden. I would need to traverse this summit or bypass it, there was no way to see how easy/difficult this might be.
I came to Isvatnet in slightly less than 2 hours, then took one more hour to ascend to the top ridge. This ridge was quite a nice place, now also with views down to Melkevatnet on the north side. The first part of the ridge looked doable, but not perfect for a solo ascent. However, it looked like a short traverse on the very top of the snow field would get me to a point from where I could get back onto the summit ridge. I went ahead and before long, I was standing at a small rock cairn marking the very summit of point 1252 meter. (The middle hump in the picture.) The plan was now to descend and follow the ridge to Reitetinden. However, immediately beyond point 1252, there is a pretty deep cut in the ridge, the cliff being near vertical. Again, I spotted a possible way to downclimb, but this was not attractive for me on a solo trip. I went back down to the snow and decided to descend in order to check out if the snow field would reconnect with the main ridge much closer to my objective, Reitetinden.
This plan turned out to be successful! I was quite happy, since this was sort of my last option, given that I had ascended to the ridge this early.
The final ridge was a fun scramble and I arrived at the summit at 1345. This time reflects my detour to 1252 as well as some thinking/routefinding. The summit has a nice cairn and the ridges that continue south and east are not as nice as my ridge from the north. I spent 30 minutes on the summit, taking pictures and having a piece of chocolate for lunch.
The return hike was now straightforward as I followed my route back to the col between 1252 and 1258. From here, I still took advantage of the snow fields, but then decided to traverse slightly higher and reconnect with the marked path just north of lake Isvatnet. I was back at the trailhead at 1715, so 3 hours on the return hike.
This route was overall very nice and I will long remember the beautiful terrain just above treeline with lots of nice cloudberries! Overall, a very interesting day in what seems like a pretty remote mountain landscape. It seems that Reitetinden is climbed rather seldom. The red marked path to the "other Reiteinden" in the same area is somewhat confusing, but seems to be where local people would go.