Venture out on a challenging day hike with views for miles
- Destination: Geilo
- Season: June–September
- Difficulty: Demanding
- Distance: 18.9 kilometers (loop)
- Elevation Gain: 540 meters
- Duration: 5.5–7 hours
The hike to Birgithovda takes you southwest of Geilo for stunning views of the Hardangervidda mountain plateau. After leaving the town, the trail runs through the woods to Hakkesetstølen cabin. From there, it continues past numerous ponds before rising above the tree line and allowing you to take in the surrounding landscape. From Birgithovda and back towards Geilo, the route crosses Tuftebrua bridge and passes along Ustedalsfjorden.
This trail begins from central Geilo. There is parking at Geilojordet or alternatively at the Vestlia resort.
From central Geilo, take the walkway toward Geilojordet and continue on to Stølsvegen, past Geilo Hestesenter and on to Gamle Skurdalsveg towards Ivarstølen. From Ivarstølen take the marked trail to the right (Pariserløypa) and follow the signs to Hakkesetstølen cabin.
The trail then turns to the west, past Store Hakkesettjørne og Grødalstjørnan ponds. The terrain is quite hilly and rocky as you pass through a sparse birch forest. You will discover some nice views as you start to climb towards Birgithovda, passing Beinstigtjørne pond. At 1,173 m.a.s.l. Birgithovda offers a wonderful panorama of the surrounding mountains.
Continue in the same direction before turning right at the fork before Øvre Langetjørn lake. Follow the trail north with Hallingskarvet mountain range in front of you. The trail descends steeply towards Tuftebrua bridge before a relaxing stroll alongside Ustedalsfjorden back into Geilo.
- In July and August it may be possible to take the chairlift at Vestlia resort, which will avoid some of the initial ascent.
- The trail can be wet and soggy in parts, so wear appropriate footwear.
- At Hakkesetstølen you can find traditional Norwegian food and snacks, as well as toilets.
Where to stay
Geilo has a range of accommodation options available, including cabins, hotels, and Airbnbs.