Heklefjellrunden Hiking Trail
Take a roundtrip-hike filled with spectacular viewpoints and serene mountain lakes
- Destination: Valdres
- Season: June-October
- Difficulty: Demanding
- Distance: 23 kilometers (loop)
- Elevation Gain: 820 meters
- Duration: 8-10 hours
Hiking Heklefjellrunden allows you to experience the best of Beitostølen, both in terms of nature and food. This roundtrip gives you far-reaching views and the chance to take refreshing swims in mountain lakes. A highlight is having coffee and “lapper” (a type of pancake) with fresh jam at Bitibua, a tiny kiosk selling locally sourced food.Many of the trails around Beitostølen result from the tracks made by livestock going to and from the old summer mountain farms (“støl” is a term for a mountain farm used in summer). These trails run through smooth mountain terrain and are easy to follow. However, the length of the route when starting from Bjødnabakken makes this a demanding hike. If you want a shorter alternative, it’s possible to hike to the Bitibua Kiosk (4.7 kilometers) or Båtskaret (8.5 kilometers) and take the bus back to Beitostølen.
From Fagernes, take NOR-WAY 161 Valdresekspressen or the local route 137 and alight at Beitostølen. Walk some 100 meters along the road and you’ll reach the trailhead at the bottom of Bjødnabakken, on your right-hand side when coming in the direction of Fagernes.
If you want a shorter hike, you can take the bus back from Båtskaret (8.5 kilometers) or Bitibua Kiosk (4.7 kilometers). Note that Bitibua Kiosk isn’t a registered bus stop, but the bus should draw to a halt if you position yourself so that you’re clearly visible from the road, signaling to the driver to stop. Buses run infrequently, so you’ll need to plan your trip carefully by checking departure times at Entur before heading off.
CarFrom Fagernes, follow the signs to Road 51 towards Vågå/Beitostølen. Drive on Road 51 for about 40 kilometers until you reach Beitostølen. Find parking in the center of Beitostølen. Beitostølvegen Parking is an alternative that's close to the trailhead at the bottom of Bjødnabakken.
Heklefjellrunden has red markings and numbered checkpoints.
The trail starts at the bottom of Bjødnabakken. Follow the gravel road that travels between the bobsled and pushmobile runs up to the top of the hill. If you want to take a shortcut, the ski-lift operates also in summer.
Having reached the top of the hill, there’s both a graveled path for cyclists and a hiking trail. Follow the hiking trail to avoid cyclists coming towards you at top speed. When you reach checkpoint no. 52, follow the signs towards Knausehøgda.
Once you’ve ascended the little hill, you’ll see straight towards Bitihorn Mountain, while Knausehøgdi and Nørdre Knausen are the mountains to your right. Follow the trail that runs between Knausehøgdi and Nørdre Knausen. The trail takes you through a forest of birch, between scrubs of juniper and willow. Alternatively, you can hike the trail that runs along the western side of Knausehøgdi, before rounding the peak on the northern side (via checkpoint no. 37).
From the top of Knausehøgdi, you’ll have far-reaching views of the rest of the trail, which wind its way over Grønekinnkampen, Heklefjellet, and Gravolskampen mountains. Continue by following the red markings towards Grønekinnkampen. The trail takes you along a plain before ascending. The 120-meter ascent to the top is the trail’s toughest climb. Once at the top, you’re awarded stunning views of Olevatnet Lake and Skaget Mountain. You’ll also see the trail continuing down towards Bitibua Kiosk.
After a well-deserved break with local delicacies at Bitibua, head along the trail that runs up the hill behind the kiosk. Follow the red markings up towards Heklefjellet. Having reached the top, the terrain evens out and continues towards Gravolskampen. The trail splits in two here, so make sure to take the trail with the red markings. This trail leads to Søre Båtskaret, where it meets the trail from Båtskaret, an alternative trailhead for Gravolskampen. From here, it’s about 2.6 kilometers to Gravolskampen.
Tip: If you want a nice viewpoint towards Bitihorn, you can take a detour to Båtskardberget from where the route meets the trail from Båtskaret. It’s about 1.2 kilometers (out-and-back), with an ascent of some 50 meters.
On your way to Gravolskampen, you’ll pass some lakes where you can take a swim and fill up your bottle. From the top of Gravolskampen, you’re awarded breathtaking views of Jotunheimen, Gausdalsfjella, Valdresflye plateau and Vinstre Lake.
Heading back, follow the red markings down the eastern ridge of Gravolskampen. The trail travels along the eastern side of Gravolstjernet Lake. It’s a gradual descent of some 220 meters, not too hard on your knees and legs. From the northern edge of the lake, it’s about 3.5 kilometers back to where you took off to Grønekinnkampen. The trail leads you through a varied landscape of wetlands and forests.
Having reached the foot of Grønekinnkampen, continue some 2.8 kilometers back to Beitostølen, following the same trail as you came.
There are several water sources along the way but do remember to fill up your bottle before you leave as there’s some distance to the first source.
If the weather’s nice, bring a towel and a swimsuit so you can take a refreshing swim in the lakes along the trail.
- Buy coffee and locally sourced refreshments at Bitibua Kiosk.
Where to stay
Stay at Radisson Blu Mountain Resort Beitostølen for Scandinavian cuisine as well as spa facilities.
Questions or comments? Let us know.