A goal for many local walkers is to reach the top of Breitind, the highest peak on the island of Senja. Looking from the road it seems impossible unless you are good at climbing cliffs, but there is a route which is described as ‘luftig‘ (airy) and only involves a bit of scrambling.
Breitind has been on my ‘to do’ list since we arrived, so seizing the moment, Frank (our catechet) and I set off at 9pm on an early August evening. This might seem rather late, but whilst the midnight sun was 3 weeks behind us, there was still good light. It’s about an hours drive away, and on the way we passed a German cruise ship (Frank is German):
The start point in Mefjord is just a few meters above sea level, so there is no head-start on the 1003m (3290 feet). The view of the fjord gets better the high one walks:
After a steep walk up a path which picks through huge boulders left behind by landslides, we arrived at a lake where a number of people have their ‘huts’. We couldn’t help thinking that you’d have to be keen to spend your holidays there when all supplies have to be carried up by hand! However, they do get a good view. There is a 360 degree panorama here.
From here we could also just about see the top:
By now, the sun was beginning to set spectacularly over the Atlantic:
As we got higher we began to see over the nearest ridge to the mountains dividing other fjords. And we reached some of the remaining snow.
At about 950m (3100′) I ran out of steam! This has never happened before, but it being well after midnight possibly had something to do with it! So I stopped for more pictures whilst Frank went to the top:
It’s hard to capture in a picture just how steep the path is!
Here is a 360 degree view.
We set off back as the sun was beginning to rise, although we never directly (we were going down as it was coming up, on the other side of the mountain):
On the drive home we were treated to spectacular low cloud and sea fog:
All home safe and sound at 5am, and ready for work at 9am. And there’s always next year to try for the top . . .