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near Skaftå, Hordaland (Norge)
A relatively gentle, four to six hour hike up to Brøknipa (822 m), starting from the main road along the coast. This peak is located on Osterøya (which, freely translated, means as much as 'The Isle of Cheese). Since it is surrounded by fjords, this is an inland island - Europe's biggest!
On a normal day, there should be enough parking space along the narrow road near the trail-head. The most demanding part of the hike is actually the first 2 kilometres, going up through a steep-walled river gorge. Above the gorge waits a lovely hanging valley, which is a bit swampy but with few trees it has the feel of a large meadow. This is a very quiet area; in summer this valley is inhabited by sheep, but few humans choose this valley to hike through. The path follows the western slope, but is somewhat difficult to track here and there: this path is not well-trodden so watch your ankles! At the head of the valley, there is a windgap named Vindeggja, where a trail from the west joins ours. From there the path swings east, following a rocky slope that leads to the crest. After the crest follows a plateau with numerous small mounds. The path leads towards the southeast and before long the summit comes in sight. On the plateau there are many other, more popular trails joining from the east; expect more people.
Near the summit the vista towards the south opens up, looking into the fjord. On the other side of the fjord, one can see a skyline that includes (from west to east) Ulriken, Gullfjellet, Tveitakvitingen and Folgefonna.
In terms of geology, this hike passes through one of the outermost bends of the larger Bergen Arc (which can easily be distinguished on satellite pictures). The bedrock consists of thinly bedded, almost vertically inclined rocks that align north-south. These rocks are classified as metamorphosed sediments and volcanic rocks that formed in the now perished ocean that once existed between Greenland and Norway before these continents collided some 400 million years ago, at which time the sediments were consolidated and thrust up the way we find them now.
Don't be deterred by the message 'privat parking' on the waysign - down the road there is plenty of space that is not private.
A saeter is a meadow that is used for cattle grazing in summer
on the way up, please follow the gps track in the direction that I'm indicating on the picture. after 50 m the trail emerges again.