Masdalhornet Hiking Trail
Plateau hike between Ålesund and Volda
- Destination: Sunnmøre
- Season: April-October
- Difficulty: Demanding
- Distance: 11.1 kilometers (out‑and‑back)
- Elevation Gain: 630 meters
- Duration: 3.5-4.5 hours
Masdalhornet, also called Vartdalhornet, is a mountain north of Ørsta. Unlike the more rugged peaks in the area, this is more of a plateau mountain. When you reach the summit, it plunges down towards Vartdalsfjorden, giving you an airy and nice view.
From Ålesund drive towards Bergen on road E39. Take the ferry from Solavågen to Festøy, and continue on road E39 for 12 kilometers until you reach Nordre Vartdal.
Look for a small yellow sign pointing you towards Årskog and take a left here, and then immediately after take a left over a bridge and then a right after the bridge. Stay on the road and look for the gravel road to the left of the river. You will pass a toll booth before you continue on the gravel road to the parking lot at Høgebakken.
You can travel by Fram Ekspress bus route 100/101 between Ålesund and Volda and it takes about 1 hour to get to Nordre Vardal from either location. You will have to walk in to the parking lot though which is about 5 kilometers one way. Check the timetables at Entur for traveling by bus from Ålesund or from Volda.
From the parking lot at Høgebakken, hike past the cabins at the end of the road. You will find the trail on the other side of the cabins.
After 500 meters look for a trail going left and up towards the ridge. The trail is visible at first, but when it fades away, it's just as easy to go off-trail.
Up at the ridge, you will find a trail going in the direction of Trongegga to the left. When you're passing Trongegga, the ridge is much more narrow and some might feel it a bit airy, but shortly after a wide and flat terrain will reveal itself.
The rest of the hike is easy, but the trail is not always visible. However, the terrain is a welcoming place for off-trail exploration.
- Make sure to bring enough to drinking water for the entire hike.
- Free parking.
- Bring coins to pay the toll fee of NOK 25,-
Questions or comments? Let us know.