Scandinavian Mountains over 2000 metres - James Baxter
Rondane can be accessed from the arterial Gudbrandsdalen valley on the west or from the Atnadalen valley to the east.
On the west side Gudbrandsdalen is one of the major thoroughfares in Norway and the road between Oslo and Trondheim passes along the valley. If driving Otta turn at Otta to head 13 km to Mysuseter, Turn at Sel for the 8 km to Høvringen and turn at Dovrefjell for the 25 + Km to Grimsdalshytta. The road to Mysuseter and Høvringen are open all year but the road to Grimsdalshytta lodge is closed in the winter due to snow.
If using public transport there are quite regular busses to Otta Sel and Dovrefjell from Oslo Bergen and Trondheim. There are a number of regular busses to Otta and Sel. One of the routes from Bergen to Trondheim passes through Otta and Sel and the there are various routes from Oslo via Oslo airport to Trondheim or a number of towns (Maløy, Ålesund, Molde, Kristiansund, Sjåkk) on the north west fjords the which pass through Otta, and most through Sel also. These routes are usually all year round. There is an excellent web site with an English link listing all these major bus routes at www.nor-way.no or you can also phone for information Tel: +47 81 54 44 44. There is also a major train line which goes from Oslo via Gardermoen airport to Trondheim which stops at Otta. Further information on the train times and prices can be obtained from www.nsb.no, where there is an English link or Tel:+47 81 50 08 88.
Once in Otta there are local busses which go to Mysuseter (also Spranget in summer) and once in Sel there are local busses which go to Høvringen (also Smuksjøseter in summer) in the Easter and summer seasons. The buses usually go once in each direction around 0930 hrs +/- 1 hour, and at 1630 hrs +/- 1 hour. To find out more on these local bus times try the Norwegian only website www.ottadalen.no and go to the "Fjellruter" link or Tel:+47 61 23 44 55.
The east side of Rondane is accessed via the much smaller road between Enden and Folldal, the Riksvei 27. Without private transport the possibilities are much more limited on this side of Rondane. This road is open in the summer and except in bad weather the winter also. In the summer park at Straumbu lodge for the 6 km walk to Bjørnhollia lodge and in winter park at Furulund just north of Nesset and ski over the Atnsjøen lake. For Dørålseter lodge drive westwards up the 15 km toll road which leaves the Riksvei 27 just north of Statsbuøyen. The road to Dørålseter is only open in the summer. For Grimsdalshytta lodge take the toll road westwards for 25 km from Holen which is five km south of Folldal, again on the Riksvei 27. The road to Grimsdalshytta lodge continues on to Gudbrandsdalen but is only open in the summer also.
If taking public transport then there is only one bus that operates along this route and it runs from Koppang train station to Folldal and passes Enden en route. The route is operated by Østerdalen Billag. Their website is www.osterdalbillag.no and their phone number is +47 62 48 39 50. The bus runs in the summer and winter but the times change according to school holidays. In the summer get off at Straumbu and in the spring get off at Nesset for Bjørnhollia lodge. This bus should connect with the train at Koppang railway station on the Oslo to Roros line, but if it does not there will be a long and possibly overnight wait so please check. The times of the train Oslo to Koppang are on the their website at www.nsb.no or Tel:+47 81 50 08 88.
There is a another option during the school holidays (about late June to mid August) of taking a bus from Ringebu (about 45 km south of Otta) in Gudbrandsdalen to Straumbu. Ringebu is accessed by the same bus and rail connections as Otta (see above). This bus is operated by Ringebu Bilruter and their contact is www.ringebubilruter.no or Tel +47 61 28 47 40.
In view of the potential problems accessing Rondane from the east side using public transport I would actually recommend getting to and from Bjørnhollia or Dørålseter lodges via Mysuseter and Rondvassbu. With private transport this is an lovely part of Norway and Atnadalen is exceptionally beautiful especially in the late summer and early autumn.
The times of the boat on Rondvatnet lake likely to be: start July to end August, leaving Rondvassbu lodge 0900 and 1600 and leaving the north end of the lake 0930 and 1630. In addition to this there is and extra sailing from mid July to mid August leaving Rondvassbu lodge at 1400 and the north end of the lake at 1430. Further details can be obtained at Rondvassbu lodge. Remember to check the time as they may vary. Also be aware that in bad weather the boat may not operate. If you miss the boat the alternative is the three hour walk described below under route Ro.3.