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Flatbrehytta 2018

Image: We're 20 minutes from the road at this point. The foliage is starting to open up a bit, allowing us to see the terrain we're entering. Image: The main river in the valley. The path in this area was reconstructed after a major landslide swept away half the valley in 2004. Image: A few years back the local hiking group hired sherpas to improve difficult parts of the path by building stairs using natural rocks. Image: At the end of the lower valley path, the "real" trip begins according to Helen. This area is a national park, meaning you're not allowed to disturb the nature in any way beyond walking through it. The path splits in two at this point. The one straight ahead is the steep route up. It's shorter, but also a lot harder and less scenic. Image: We're taking the scenic route, so we have to cross the river here. I'm standing on a small wooden bridge as I take this picture. Image: As we got up on the ridge above the river, we found a field of flowers. Image: Trekking up the valley. Going up there before noon is a bonus on a hot day as that half of the valley is still in shade. Image: Getting into the bottom of the valley. View back down. Image: Up on the ledge at the bottom of the valley. At this point, we can see the mountains at the other side of the Supphella valley. Image: Suddenly a wild glacier appears! This is a real "wow"-moment, as we walk further up. This is the edge of the Supphella glacier, from where it calves into the valley below. Image: Helen posing in front of the glacier. Image: And yours truly doing the same. Image: I had to get a panorama of this beautiful area. We took an hour's lunch break at this point, after putting on our jackets. It's a hot day, but the draught from the glacier is powerful and very cold. Image: A little picture from down whence we came. Image: As we get higher up, we can see back down to the village. The mountain in the middle is Vetle Supphellenipa at a "mere" 840 meters above sea level. Image: It's also possible - just - to see the bottom of Supphella valley. Image: Finally we can see the goal of our trip: Flatbrehytta. I did a "Soria Moria" moment with Helen in this picture. Image: The view towards Fjærland is stunning. Image: Walking along the edge of an old moraine. Image: This area used to be a glacial lake until 2004 when the moraine burst due to heavy melt water not being able to take its usual path out ("jøkullaup"). The new path goes through the old lake bottom, but the view on top of the moraine is naturally a whole lot better. Image: Panorama of the cabin and the old glacial lake. Image: The cabin (Flatbrehytta). Image: And the toilet, with a spectacular view from the toilet seat. Image: View towards Fjærland from the front door of the cabin. Image: This is the old cabin, which is just a few meters from the new one. It's currently used as a pantry. Image: Enjoying the view from the stone table by the cabin. Image: A plaque commemorating the guy who built this. Image: There's a cairn and a flagpole above the cabin. With a view towards the glacier. Image: There's several paths leading further into the mountains, and several groups traverse the glacier each year. Image: A small pond and the mountain Tyskarnipa in the background. Image: View from the flagpole towards the cabins and Fjærland. Image: Back towards the spot where I took the "Soria Moria" picture. Image: We've just started our descent. There's several cairns marking the path. And the rocks around Fjærland are quite interesting. Image: A small stream. The moss is thriving. Image: We're taking the steeper path back down. Image: A long staff is good to have when hiking. Especially when you're going downhill. Image: Getting far enough down to see Vetle Supphellenipa again. We walked up in its shade. Image: The path down follows a sharp ridge. You'd not want to roll off it on either side. Image: Towards the valley through which we ascended. Image: And from here we can see all the way back down to the parking lot. Image: The river running on the western part of the valley runs through a gorge where it's covered by snow for most - if not all - of the year.

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