Ski Touring course - Vatnahalsen

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Ski Touring Level 2 4 days 6 - 12 participants

Note! This trip is only held in the Norwegian language. 

Do you have a desire to learn more about ski touring? Or do you dream of joining one of our tours like the Norwegian Haute Route in Jotunheimen? This course is intended for those with little to no previous experience. We include responsible and experienced guides who will give you the best training in the beautiful area around Vatnahalsen. Not only will you learn skills to ski tour on your own time, but also explore one of the hidden gems of Norway, tucked into the mountains with real Norwegian charm around every corner. With a maximum of six participants per guide, you will receive hands-on training from highly qualified guides with the best expertise.

Highlights

  • Skiing technique, trip planning, and avalanche training before this year's top tour season
  • Get to know Vatnahalsen as a ski touring tourist destination
  • Time with a professional instructor
  • Learn how to make decisions safely in the mountains

Key topics during the weekend will be skiing technique under various conditions, trip planning, proper use of ski touring equipment and of course avalanche training will be an important topic. The course is set early in the season to get ready for wonderful experiences in the winter mountains!

During the weekend we will stay and dine at the pleasant Vatnahalsen Hogfjellshotell. The family-owned hotel offers wonderful opportunities for courses and excursions. Around you will find well-known hiking destinations such as Tarven, Kvanntjørnnuten and Skjebergnuten to name a few. Every day we are served a 3 course dinner on a small but lovely buffet consisting of Norwegian and local produce.

 

What's included?

  • Accommodation
  • All meals as described in the program
  • Norwegian Guide

See more of what's included under "details"

Contact

Questions about the trip? Don't hesitate to contact our project leader below, or contact our office here.

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Details

Difficulty

Level 2 out of 5. Please read more about our level of difficulty here. We set up this course for those with little to no experience on ski touring trips. You should be comfortable skiing on black slopes in resorts. If you have a lot of skiing experience, you will benefit even more this weekend. If you have little skiing experience you should spend some weekends in advance skiing in the resort and gaining fitness and technique for the ski season. The guides are experienced teachers within ski courses and anyone who wants to learn more about ski touring in the alpine winter terrain will benefit from this course.

What to bring?

Have a look at the full equipment list by clicking "Equipment list" in the menu above. You need to have avalanche equipment and a ski touring ski set-up. It is possible to rent ski equipment. 

Insurance

We strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance for your trip. Norrøna Hvitserk Adventure is not responsible for any trip delays, injury, illness, loss of belongings, family emergencies, natural events or other unforeseen issues that may hinder your ability to complete a trip with us. Norrøna Hvitserk Adventure is an adventure holiday company, and with an active holiday, there is always a risk of something as simple as a twisted ankle to keep you from your vacation. With trip insurance, your flights, hotels and travel costs can be covered if an unforeseen emergency hinders you from joining our tour, as well as coverage to fly home if necessary. By purchasing travel insurance ahead of time, you can protect your trip and yourself from issues that prevent you from traveling, and rest easy to enjoy your vacation.

Safety

Safety is always the number one consideration on a trip with Norrøna Hvitserk Adventure. If there is an emergency on tour with us, help will be able to reach you relatively quickly. We have a 24-hour emergency hotline within our office and the guide will always have the ability to contact help. Norway has excellent search and rescue operations throughout the country with evacuations available via helicopter or red cross emergency teams. 

Our guides have first aid training and have a selection of medicines and first aid equipment for the necessary treatment in the mountains. Hvitserk also has a partnership with Turlegen.no (Trip Doctor) who can be contacted if needed for medical advice.

If you are on prescribed medication, have known allergies or similar, you must always bring your personal medication.

Hvitserk plans the trip days based on the weather, conditions and the group. Our focus is to take care of each other and work together in one team. The guide will have the ability to make safety decisions for the group, although the decision-making process will be transparent and involve guests in the process. 

We plan our trips so that we do not expose ourselves to unwanted risk. On this tour, we will always be close to each other, and if an unforeseen situation occurs - the guide will be present quickly to handle it.

Languages

The language on this course is Norwegian, so you need to understand and speak Norwegian to join this course. If you want to set up a private ski-touring course in English, you can email us at hvitserk@norrona.com

Accommodation

 Accommodation is at the cozy and family-run Vatnahalsen Høgfjellshotel. The price includes a bed in a double room. If you wish to have a single room, the single supplement is 1000,- NOK.

Vatnahalsen is only reachable by train. Check out https://www.vy.no/en for train tickets. The afternoon train from Bergen and Oslo is the only train that corresponds with the last train from Myrdal to Vatnahalsen. We do not recommend to catch a later train. 

Changes may occur

We reserve the right to make changes to the program, and the price. The day to day program is indicative, and changes may occur. Please have a look at our terms and conditions

Price includes

  • Norwegian IFMGA ski touring guides from Hvitserk
  • Accommodation in double rooms(3 nights) at Vatnahalsen høgfjellshotell, shared rooms with a participant of the same gender
  • All meals as described in the day-to-day program

Price does not include

  • Train tickets to/from Vatnahalsen. Check out https://www.vy.no/en for train tickets
  • Avalanche and ski equipment
  • Travel insurance
  • Drinks and snacks
  • Single room supplement (1000NOK) 

Other information

If it is close to the departure date, please contact us. Maybe you will be able to join anyways.

 It is mandatory to bring avalanche equipment to the course. It is possible to rent from Hvitserk. Let us know well ahead of time if you need to rent this. 

Day by day

day

1

Meet up at Vatnahalsen

Accommodation Hotel
Meals D

Vatnahalsen can only be reached by train. We gather in the evening after the afternoon trains from Bergen and Oslo arrive. Vatnahalsen Høgfjellshotell is a pleasant and family-owned hotel at 840 meters. Here we enjoy dinner, meet the guide and get to know the other participants. We spend the evening preparing for the trip the next day, going through the weekend plan and getting ready for the days in the field. We spend the night in a double room at the hotel.

day

2

Ski touring and avalance course

Accommodation Hotel
Meals BLD

We start the day with a good hotel breakfast. To get the most out of the day, we start out on a tour pretty quickly after breakfast and move out into the beautiful terrain around Vatnahalsen. The weather and conditions determine the route, and the evening in advance we have studied the map and laid out a plan for where we intend to go. Along the way, we take breaks where we get tips and training on relevant topics related to avalanches and alpine terrain. We have packed lunches from the hotel and when we return we will be served coffee and waffle before taking a hot shower and have dinner in the evening.

day

3

Ski touring and avalanche course

Accommodation Hotel
Meals BLD

After breakfast, we head out into the terrain. Like the day before, we follow important routines related to avalanche safety. In close dialogue with our guide, we will immerse ourselves in important topics related to ski touring. We will focus on skiing outside prepared trails and discuss how to make good route choices. The evening we spend like the day before, discussion of topics we experienced during the day, and of course, a lovely dinner served at the hotel.

day

4

Last day

Meals BL

We go out after a hearty breakfast at the hotel. Out in the terrain, we will try out the knowledge we have gained over the last two days, and this day will also be full of educational content. We eat our lunch outside and find some nice and fun terrain for our last day. Maybe you got some new skiing buddies that you go on a ski trip with already this winter? We take the afternoon train back home from Vatnahalsen.

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Equipment List

Take a good look at this list, and make sure you bring everything you need. We encourage you to use what you have for this trip, and purchase items if you're missing something important on the list below. We have divided the gear list into three categories:

  1. Required: If you do not own this gear, you must acquire it for your trip.
  2. Recommended: Gear we suggest to be comfortable, but it is not imperative.
  3. Optional: Fun, additional luxuries.  

Layering is extremely important in a variable climate like Norway. This list will guide you through the essentials. Remember the Norwegian saying "There is no bad weather, only bad gear", and prepare appropriately for any weather. You can read about the weather where you're traveling here.

The video below if for SUMMER trips, but you can still get some good tips for Winter! Welcome to Norway!

How to pack for your trip to Norway from Norrøna Hvitserk Adventure on Vimeo.

Please contact us at hvitserk@norrona.com if you have any questions.

We always recommend wool in the Norwegian Mountains, but if you already have synthetic layers and don't want to buy new ones, synthetic is okay. 

REQUIRED:

SKIS, BOOTS, POLES

Touring skis, boots and backcountry ski poles. 

HELMET

Safety first! Make sure it fits over your thin, windproof hat and does not move when you shake your head.

SKI CRAMPONS

To assist in steep ascents. Consider bringing an ice ax or whippet as well.

BEACON, SHOVEL, PROBE

Bring extra batteries for your beacon and make sure your beacon currently has above 90% battery.

BASE LAYER - 2 SETS

2 sets of wool long-sleeved top and bottom. Warm, Extra Warm or Expedition thickness is recommended. 

MID-LAYER

A medium thickness wool or fleece top to go over your base layer. 

INSULATED JACKET

A thick, warm, insulated jacket to put on during breaks. We recommend a puffy jacket with down or synthetic. 

SHELL / RAIN JACKET

Gore-Tex or similar is mandatory. Extrememly important in Norwegian climate. The jacket must be waterproof, have a hood, and make sure you don’t get wet even if it rains all day. We recommend jackets with pit zips for ventilation. 

MEDIUM INSULATED JACKET

Use a synthetic or down jacket that fits over your base layer and mid layer, yet underneathe your rain shell. Should be comfortable with full range of movement when all layers are on.

EXTRA TOP LAYER

Bring an extra medium thick layer to add underneathe your medium insulated jacket in case you get cold easily. 

GLOVES & MITTENS

1 thin pair of wool gloves to protect your hands. 1 pair of over mittens for additional warmth with windproofing. 1 extra pair of thick mittens in case yours get wet. 3 in total. 

HATS

2 warm hats. 1 thick, 1 thin. Make sure at least one has a windproof lining. 1 sun hat to protect your face.

HIKING SOCKS

4 pairs, we recommend wool, above the ankle or higher. 2 thin. 2 thick. We recommend a 5th pair that are extra thick for evenings. 

BOOTS

Bring lightweight boots.

SKI BACKPACK

Ski pack for emergency gear and daily needs: food, water, beacon, shovel, probe, layers, first aid kit, etc... 40-50 liters recommended. 

SUNGLASSES 

UV rated, we recommend a strap to keep them in place and so they don't get lost. Bring dark lenses with plastic frames, not metal. 

SUNSCREEN / CHAPSTICK

Make sure the Chapstick has UV rated sunscreen in it. We also suggest cold cream such as Dermatone to help protect your skin. 

WATER BOTTLES

Insulated water bottle, 2 liter capacity. Do not bring a camelback bladder, this will freeze in cold temperatures. 

TOILETRIES

Personal basics: shampoo, conditioner, toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, etc...

PERSONAL MEDICATIONS

Make sure you bring any personal meds you need on your trip, and ensure the Hvitserk office is updated on your allergies or needs. 

SHELL PANTS

Waterproof shell pants. Gortex is best. We recommend heavier duty pants to keep you warm with zips for ventilation. 

HEADLAMP

Make sure you bring extra batteries as they die faster in the cold. 

INDOOR SHOES

It is customary to leave wet shoes at the door and change into indoor slippers.

 

RECOMMENDED:

WOOL UNDERWEAR

We highly recommend bringing wool underwear and bra. No cotton.

COMPRESSION SACKS FOR GEAR

Recommended for storing your gear, keeping it dry, and compressing your down jackets to create more space. 

BALACLAVA AND BUFF

A wool layer to protect your neck and face. 

THERMOS

We recommend a thermos for hot drinks to have with you all day. We suggest a large, 1 liter thermos.

FIRST AID KIT

If you have certain hiking aids specific to you: i.e. blister care or ibuprofen, etc...

CAMERA

Be prepared for the cold. Insulating your camera will keep it working for the entire trip. We suggest bringing an extra battery pack. 

CASUAL CLOTHES

Cozy clothes to wear when we are not participating in activities and eating dinner.

SITTING MAT

Strongly recommended to insulate you from the ground.

SWIMMING SUIT OR SHORTS AND BRA

For sitting in saunas. 

 

OPTIONAL:

ANTIBAC

If you need it for the bathroom or lunch. 

WET WIPE OR TOILET PAPER

If you have a bathroom emergency while hiking. We use "pack it in pack it out" ethics, so you will need to carry out your used items and throw them away later.

EAR PLUGS

If youre a light sleeper.

JOURNAL AND PEN

 In order to take notes and write about the trip.

SNACKS

Chocolate, nuts or energy bars if there is something particular you enjoy eating. You will have the opportunity to buy snacks on your trip.

HEADSET

If you would like to listen to music or an audio book while skiing.

Bed linens and towels are included all nights. 

 

Dates & booking

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This trip is also offered as a private tailormade trip. Travel alone, with your friends or family whenever you want. Send a request

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