How to get there:
Norheimsund is the starting point described here. This is
a bit more than one hour drive from Bergen. Drive E-16 towards
Oslo until the traffic circle at Trengereid. Take a right there
and follow signs to Norheimsund, a bit more than 40 km from
this point. In Norheimsund, you first arrive at the road intersection
where the road east along the Hardangerfjord goes left across a bridge.
Do not make a left, continue straight ahead through the center of the village.
After about 800 meter (from the intersection), the main road turns distinctly
left and a smaller road turns off to the right. There are three signs pointing
to the right, "Verkstad Kvam Herrad", "HSD Norheimsund", and "Norheimsund 0.6".
Turn right onto this road and continue for about 50 meter until you see the HSD
cargo building and three flag poles in front of you. A smaller road turns left, a sign
says Kaldestad. Follow this road for about 50 meter until you see a 4WD road going uphill
to the right, this is just before a single family house.
There is a wooden sign saying "Solhaug" at the beginning of this road.
There is parking for 2-3 cars here
without blocking any access or roads. The GPS coordinates for
this location is N60:21.920, E006:08.707, and the elevation is about 17 meter above
sea level. Alternative access information:
For the most comprehensive information about this and other Hordaland mountains
consult the WEB pages
of Arnt Flatmo.
The sign and reference to Solhaug was a bit mysterious
to us, since no such name can be found on the M711 topo map of the area. We ran into a local
hiker at Krokavatnet and he provided the following information; If one continues another 800
meter along the main road south-east along the fjord, there is a side road climbing up to the right
to the farm Tveit.
This road can be driven by ordinary cars up to the place called Solhaug. Solhaug is near a small
pond at about 420 meter.
The road is not marked on the M711 topo map, but the pond can be seen.
There is parking at Solhaug and a well developed trail continues the short
distance from Solhaug
to the Krokavatnet lake. However, if your objective is to hike more than
1000 vertical meter, then the route described below is your best choice. Route description:
The first part of the route follows the nice 4WD road as it climbs the hill,
first in a section going west, thereafter with switch-backs. There are numerous
small trails and traces of forest roads forking off, however, there should be
no problem staying on the main road heading uphill. There is one logging track
that branches up to your right, near an antenna, the proper route runs below
this antenna on a fairly level section of the road. The next fork is at about
400 meter elevation, one track forks left with a wooden sign saying Solhaug.
It is possible to proceed to Solhaug and then continue to the Krokavatnet lake from there.
The best route, is to take the right fork and continue along the 4WD road all the way
to the lake. The road gets appreciably rougher (if you were to drive it) after this
fork, having short sections of meadow. Abruptly, the road tops out at the NW end of
Krokavatnet. There is an old stone dam and a few cabins in the area. Continue on a good
trail east (to your left) and locate several more cabins in the NE end of the lake.
From here, there is also a water pipe running down to Norheimsund, you may have spotted this
pipe on your (far) left towards the end of the hike up to the lake. Another, alternative
trail comes up to this point from the road and parking at Solhaug.
The Vesoldo summit is now clearly visible to the south with the lower Tørvikenuten extending
a ridge eastwards. Due to steep terrain near the lake, the trail climbs a small saddle a bit
away from the lake, a fairly distinct and obvious gully is likely the best way up. There are
several alternative trails, however, they were all covered by a little snow when we did
this hike. Once on top of this local hill, descend in a distinct gully on the other side and proceed
on the right (west) side of the small lake Torsteinsvatnet (615m). Soon thereafter, you will see
the cabins called Aksneshiller on a gentle hill in front of you.
The next section of the route, from Aksneshiller to the lake Finnhiller, is quite rugged
and it is important to locate and follow the trail. (Due to snow, we lost the trail and wasted
time in steep terrain north of lake Finnhiller, see picture below.) The trail heads out from
Aksneshiller to the south-west in the direction of some distinct cliffs, rather than in the direction
of Vesoldo and the lake. Finding the trail is obvious when hiking back, however, with snow
on the ground it was less clear when we made this hike. The trail must locate a small, distinct,
V-shaped gully providing what looks like the only easy access to the west side of lake
Finnhiller. The top of this gully has GPS coordinates N60:19.684, E006:06.364, with elevation about
660 meter. Proceed down the very narrow gully, further down it becomes wider and the trail contours
around the west side of the lake before climbing away in order to reach the single, small cabin
The actual ascent starts from here, the route is marked with cairns all the way. First, climbing gently
south-east towards the broad, central gully where a stream comes down. Perhaps surprisingly, shortly
before reaching this gully, the trail makes a sharp turn to the right (poorly marked when there is
snow) and climbs more steeply up on Knostenakkjen, the ridge that extends north. The route continues along
a distinct ridge before turning again to the south-east, following a smaller ridgeline towards the saddle
between the main summit and Tørvikenuten (1028m). Higher up, one can climb somewhat more directly to
an area just south of the summit, the last few meters being quite flat and gentle. Provided that one
stays on the marked trail, this route is (YDS) class 1 in the summer. With winter conditions as we
experienced, the rating is class 2. The route should also be quite suitable for cross country
skiing later in the winter. Comments:
I did this hike with my son Pål Jørgen, age 14. We started from
the car at 1015, it took us one hour to reach Krokavatnet, after another hour
we had a short rest at the Aksneshiller farm cabins between Tosteinsvatnet and
Finnhillervatnet. The summit was reached in 1:45 from Aksneshiller, however, this
includes trouble with the route just before Finnhillervatnet as well as knee deep
snow on slippery ice higher up on the mountain. We spent about 15 minutes on
the summit before the return hike. We reached the car at 17:15, precisely 7 hours
after the start.
As with most mountains having a large primary factor (Vesoldo ranks number 14
in Hordaland), the view from the summit is superb.
Vesoldo and the mountains in Kvamskogen as seen from the air.
Vesoldo, the first view when reaching Krokavatnet.
Panorama view from the end of the 4WD road. From west via
north to north-east. In the foreground, the Krokvatnet dam, left, to the
4WD road, right. In the distance, Tveitakvitingen, 1299m, west, Kvamskogen and
the mountains north of Norheimsund.
Pål Jørgen surveying the area around Krokavatnet. The route
across the hills left of Krokavatnet can be seen. Vesoldo behind.