Midtre Sølen

  • Midtre Sølen
  • 1755 m
  • Primary factor 1091
  • Location N 61:53.043, E 011:31.025 (GPS on the summit)
  • Hedmark, Norway
  • Climbed June 8, 2003


How to get there: This description starts from the small community of Alvdal, south of Tynset on Hwy. 3. Alternatively, one can arrive from the south via Koppang or from the north via Tynset.
From the Tronsvangen intersection in Alvdal, go south on Hwy. 3, 19.3 km and make a left on the road with signs for Jutulhogget. Follow this dirt road up and across the hill, then down into Rendalen, 6.2 km. Make a right towards Rendalen, continue 19.6 km through the small village Øvre Rendalen and make a left to Fiskevollen. After 1.1 km, bear right to Fiskevollen then 200 meter before a self serve toll payment. In 2003, this toll was NOK 60. Continue 22.8 km along a very good dirt road to Nysetra. This is shortly before the road crosses a river. There is a private road going right, this road is closed about 700 meter from the turnoff. This road is considerably worse, find parking in the immediate area. We parked near the road closure at about 860 meter elevation and GPS location N :61:56.216, E 011:26.204.
Route description: From the road closure, hike along the road for about 4 km to a well kept private mountain cabin near the river. Three imposing peaks are in front of you across the river, the North Sølen, the Middle Sølen, and the South Sølen. There is a bridge just north of the cabin and this serves as a good starting point for a "Tour de Rensølen".
One can climb the highest, middle peak directly from this side along a west facing ridge, however this description will cover the route that traverses all three peaks.
From the bridge, look and identify a pronounced ridge that comes down from the north peak. This ridge is gentle lower down, a bit more distinct in the middle section, then more level at its upper end. Hike through the birch forest, then across open terrain to the ridge. You will cross a T-marked trail along the way. Climb the ridge (YDS) class 2, to the summit located at GPS coordinates N 61:53.922, E 011:31.975.
From this summit head back the way you came, but descend down into the distinct saddle between the north peak and the higher middle summit. This saddle is at GPS coordinates N 61:53.403, E 011:31.312. The elevation was determined to 1445 meter based on readings from two GPS instruments. (Straight interpolation from the map would have yielded 1450 m.)
The imposing ridge of the middle peak is towering above you. This ridge offers alternate routes. If you stay on the ridge itself, the route is (YDS) class 3. Fun scrambling with slightly more difficult moves, but not more than one at the time. The rock is mostly of good quality, large boulders and short bands of cliff that offers resistance as they block your line gently tilted upwards towards the ridge line. A few places the ridge offers difficulty that exceeds class 3, circumvent to the left side in order to avoid this, but do climb back as close to the ridge as comfortable as soon as one obstacle has been overcome. There is significant exposure on the right side of the ridge, but there is no need to pick any part of the route there. It is likley that the difficulty will not exceed class 2+ if one stays well to the left side of the ridge most of the way. Such a route will be more of an ascent among rocks and boulders on a mountain slope as opposed to the better quality ridge itself. The ridge levels off and the slope is more gentle the last stretch to the summit.
In order to continue the traverse of all three peaks, descend along a clearly visible trail. This trail does not head out the shoulder pointing directly towards the south peak, but descends on the east slope until reaching the east end of the lake that is located just east of the saddle separating the the middle peak from its lower south neighbor.
From the lake, continue uphill along the trail that heads south. Leave the trail when the slope above you (to your right) is reasonable and continue more or less straight up to the top ridge. This summit plateau is rather large and the highest point is located at the far end. I would still recommend to climb the slope mainly to the right in order to reach the top ridge above the lake that you hiked by before ascending. You can then enjoy the views across to the imposing middle peak as well as to the north while completing the climb.
The best return is to head straight down into the west side of the connecting saddle, that is more or less directly back to the bridge where the (off-trail) hike began. There is a gully stretching almost from the summit and down into the valley between the south and the middle peak. This gully is snow filled in early June and provides relief for knees and legs after a long hike. The snow is moderately steep in the middle section, an ice axe is useful in order to arrest any unwanted slide. When I descended the snow was near perfect for walking straight down. Return back to the bridge where the dirt road starts. A direct line can be taken, the cabins near the bridge is visible most of the time for easy control of the direction.
Comments: I did this climb with my friend Arnt Flatmo. We left the car at 0915, and arrived at the north summit after 3 hours at 1215. We left the north summit at 1230 and reached the highest, middle summit after 1.5 hours at 1400. The descent from the highest summit started at 1415, reaching the trail intersection at the end of the lake (near the saddle between the middle and the south peak) at 1500, and the south summit at 1615. Again, we left after a 15 minute break and crossed the river near the mountain cabin at 1800, arriving back at the car at 1845.
This is a considerable hike with a large vertical gain. The hike is rewarding with good views of different mountain scenery. It varies from easy walking on flat terrain to scrambling along the top ridge of the highest peak. The trip should only be undertaken by strong hikers.