Rauddalen Area

Scandinavian Mountains over 2000 metres - James Baxter

AreasRauddalen AreaWalking Routes › Ra.9

Ra.9 Leirvassbu lodge to Olavsbu cabin via Simledalen
5 hours / 15km
390m / 350m
Unmarked path.

From Leirvassbu lodge follow the locked track, Ra.1, to Skogadalsbøen lodge for 5 km into the depths of Gravdalen.

Once you have passed the steep spur of Høgvaglhøi on the south of the river leave the gravel track and start to head down towards the river weaving through marshy areas fringed with willow scrub and some rock outcrops. It is probably best to leave the track ½ km after it crosses the steam which drains the basin between Surtningstind and Stetind. Then head south and cross the aforementioned stream before it joins the main Storutla river and swells it further. This river is reasonably large and you might be lucky and find somewhere to jump it but be prepared to wade.

Once over the river continue south cross damp tundra and for about a km until you reach the Simledøla river. Follow the river up keeping on the north side, where the tundra terrain is less stony, for 2 km passing under a steep outcrop to enter the wild and remote inner sanctum of Simledalen. This seldom visited valley often harbours a reindeer herd.

Continue up the valley past this outcrop for a good km during which the tundra becomes much more stony . Despite the stones the going is still quite easy for another couple of km as you pass to the south of a scatter of tarns to the south of the saddle between the Høgvagltind peaks. Continue past these tarns into the narrowing valley passing a glacier on the south which has deposited large moraine across the valley floor.

The km from here to the narrow pass at Simledalsbandet is across larger boulders and the going is much slower as you pass under the very steep north face of Austre Rauddalstind. This section of the route may be prone to avalanche during the winter spring under certain circumstances and therefore this route is not recommended in the winter/spring.

From the pass the route now depends if you are heading south to Olavsbu cabin on, Ra.8, or north to Langvatnet and on to Leirvassbu or Gjendebu lodges on Ra.1.

If going south to Olavsbu cabin do not descend the east side of the pass but contour along the south side of the valley at about 1600m for a km. Depending on the season this is across a mixture 35 degree snowfields and slab outcrops, some of which may be wet. After a km you gain the main north east ridge of Austre Rauddalstind and the rocky terrain levels off.

Head south now for ½ km to reach the marked Ra.8 path which gently drops down to Olavsbu cabin for 2 km. This steep snowfield/slab traverse can be avoided by continuing east down the valley from Simledalsbandet, on bare moraine and snowfield, for a km until you reach the lake at 1456m. It is not possible to go round the south side of the lake so pass the north side and after ½ km you intercept the path Ra.8 at the bottom of the steep slope on the north side of the pass.

Once on this pass head south for a good hour to reach Olavsbu cabin on Ra.8 or head north to Leirvassbu lodge on paths Ra.8 and Ra.1 respectively for 2½-3 hours. These paths are described elsewhere.