Hummel Nipa

  • Hummel Nipa
  • 437 m
  • Primary factor 132 m
  • Location: Masfjorden, Norway.
  • Location: North 60.89735, East 005.62775 (GPS at the summit)
  • Climbed January 14. 2022.
  • Difficulty YDS class 2


How to get there:
Drive E-39 north from Bergen. Continue passing Romarheim, crossing the mountains, then descending to Matre at the innermost place in Masfjorden. Immediately after you pass some powerplant installations on your right, turn right onto Hwy. 5442. Drive this road about 4 kilometer. Fork right onto a smaller road serving a power plant and cross a small bridge. Park right next to the first building on your left, this is location 60.90086, 5.61746, elevation near 65 meter.
Route description:
Locate the beginning of the trail very near where you parked, close to a pipeline that serves the old, nearby building. There may even be a sign pointing to the sky, maybe just a hint that this trail will proceed steeply uphill.
Follow the trail uphill through some dense forest (big trees). The trail is badly eroded here, but there are clear signs that this used to be a nice trail. You will soon have steeper terrain above, looking left you should see the lower part of a staircase built from stacking natural rocks. There is a hand rail for increased safety.
From here, the trail is very clear, there are several sections of steep steps all built manually by stacks of rocks. There is a hand rail supporting all these sections. Eventually, you reach about 250 meter of elevation and the trail almost as wide as a small road, curves around left to reach the small dam that has been built to support the hydro power plants below.
The next problem is to get to the other side of this dam. If the water is flowing across the top of the dam one should not attempt to walk across. There is a warning sign posted that one generally should not walk on top of the dam as there may always be some danger of falling off. The river below cascades down to the impressive Hummelfossen waterfall, thus it is extremely dangerous to fall into the river.
Upon closer inspection, a metal wire has been strung across, just on the inside of the dam. A carabiner and a (long) sling attached to a harness will certainly provide protection if crossing. A better alternative is to check if one could get permission to use a boat. There are some boats located a short distance upstream along the lake.
Assuming that you are able to cross safely, the route now ascends a fairly nice hillside in order to gain the summit. The summit is very close to the steep south side dropping almost 250 meter directly down to the lake Litle Hummelvatnet.
I did this hike with my friend Eric. We had already visited the nice viewpoint overlooking Matre, called Matre-Nipa. Parking next to the old power plant, we first headed over to get a straight view of the impressive Hummelfossen waterfall. A big storm (named Gyda) had just passed, dropping a lot of rain (not snow) and thus all creeks and rivers were running at capacity.
We started hiking at 1215 and quickly got to the first steep steps leading uphill. Impressive manual work to stack all these rocks in a stable fashion. Work on the old power plant started in 1917, so this trail was built more than 100 years ago.
Arriving at the dam, it immediately became clear that we could not cross on the dam as planned. Earlier trip reports indicated that this was possible, but the river was going at capacity with lots of water flowing across the top of the dam. We therefore assumed that this hike would be limited to the nice ascent of the old historical trail and that we would have to return at a different time when the dam would by dry on top and permit crossing.
However, Eric soon discovered boats pretty close to the dam and we decided to borrow the smallest one in order to complete what would be a quick and easy ascent on the opposite side.
We arrived at the summit at 1330, nice views. The landscape is very rugged and the drop down to the Litle Hummelvatnet impressive. The big mountain across, Gråfjellet, seems quite close. Returning at 1340, the descent was quick and efficient. We were soon back down by the boat, a quick crossing then We put the boat back in its proper place. Many thanks to the owner, whoever that is. We subsequently descended the steep trail with its many rock steps, arriving back down by the car well before 1500.