Besshøe Hiking Trail

Besseggen's challenging neighbor

  • View of Besshøe

    View of Besshøe

  • Besshøe to the right, Besseggen ridge straight ahead

    Besshøe to the right, Besseggen ridge straight ahead

  • Besshøe and Russvatnet Lake

    Besshøe and Russvatnet Lake Photo: Øystein Mølbach

Essential info

  • Destination: Jotunheimen
  • Season: May-October
  • Difficulty: Demanding
  • Distance: 21.5 kilometers (out‑and‑back)
  • Elevation Gain: 1,280 meters
  • Duration: 10-12 hours

About Besshøe

Besshøe is the neighbor of Besseggen Ridge and is a very accessible peak in Jotunheimen National Park. Start your trip from Gjendesheim Tourist Lodge and head into the impressive Gjendealpene, the Gjende Alps, for an adventure of a lifetime. 

Getting there


From Oslo, take the NOR-WAY 161 Valdresekspressen route to the stop: “Gjendesheim”. 

Check out the other accessible adventures along the Valdresekspressen bus route: Valdresekspressen Pocket Guide.

Note: the Nor-way Valdresekspressen route between Bygdin and Leirvassbu only runs from late June through late September.


From Oslo, head north on E16, towards Bergen, for 185 kilometers. When you reach Fagernes, follow signs to road 51, towards Vågå/Beitostølen. Follow road 51 for another 70 kilometers until you reach the signs for Gjendesheim lodge on your left. Follow the road to the very end where you will find parking next to the lake. 

Note: road 51, "Valdresflya", is typically open from the end of April through December. You can see the road status at or you can call for road updates (in English): +47 815 48 991. 

Trail description

The trailhead for the hike to Besshøe is found directly across from the Gjendesheim Tourist Lodge. You will follow the trail north and up the hill for about 3.5 kilometers until you reach the small river situated at the eastern side of the lake, Bessvatnet. 

Once you cross the small river, head west along the northern edge of the lake for another 3.5 kilometers. At this point, you will reach a river flowing into the lake, this is where you will start the final 3-kilometer climb along the ridge to Besshøe's peak. During this final climb, the trail is unmarked but the route is clear and you will gain about 850 meters in elevation. 

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  • At Gjendesheim Tourist Lodge, you have the opportunity to purchase and/or rent outdoor equipment for summer and winter activities. It is open between the beginning of June until the beginning of October. 
  • There is a cafe at Gjendesheim Tourist Lodge.
  • The Gjendebåtene is a ferry service on the lake, Gjende. This is a useful transportation service if you plan on hiking the other impressive peaks in the area, for example, Besseggen Ridge.

Where to stay

Gjendesheim Tourist Lodge - Located at the start of the trail. This is a popular cabin during the summer months, so make sure to call ahead to ensure there is availability for you and your party. 


Questions or comments? Let us know.

Download trail descriptions, maps, and guides in the Outtt app.

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