The Peer Gynt Trail
A stunning introduction to Nordic ski touring with views to some of Norway's most famous mountain ranges, excellent hotel accommodation with spas, and your luggage transferred each day, what could be better?
North-west of the Olympic town of Lillehammer is the Peer Gynt Løype or trail, named after a local Norwegian hero, characterised into fiction by author Henrik Ibsen. Our 120 km tour skis the entire route in what is known as 'Peer Gynt Country'.
Skiing on entirely prepared ski trails we make our way from the Espedalsvatn fjord through a landscape of distant horizons, birch tree woodland, Norwegian farmsteads, and frozen lakes. If this is your first cross country ski trip in Norway be prepared to be blown away.
- NEW: 2017 6 days skiing, instead of 5
- Excellent historic hotels with spa facilities
- Luggage transferred while you ski
- Qualified Nordic Ski Instructor
- All meals included
- Single rooms available
The mountains in the 'World of Peer Gynt' offer ideal cross country skiing terrain. The stable inland climate ensures good snow conditions throughout the winter. Most of the route sits at around 1000m running through beautiful varied terrain. The ski style used is 'classic' cross-country ski technique entirely on prepared tracks which can be skied on 'waxable' or 'fish scale' skis.
|Trip||Departure date||End date||Price||Status|
|PEG2 17||Sun 26 March 17||Sun 2 April 17||£1595||Limited Availability | Make a Booking|
|PEG1 18||Sun 11 March 18||Sun 18 March 18||£1595||Places available | Make a Booking|
|PEG2 18||Sun 25 March 18||Sun 1 April 18||£1595||Places available | Make a Booking|
Bespoke Norwegian Trips
This trip can also be organised as a bespoke holiday where the itinerary can be changed to match the quantity of days, ski locations and distances that suit the requirements of your group.
We grade this trip as Intermediate, for skiers with previous track cross country skiing experience. On our first day we will spend time finding our ski legs. Participants should be able to ski at a reasonable pace over undulating terrain and to have mastered a controlled snowplough for any steeper descents. You should be at a good fitness level and be able to ski up to 4 hours per day, with the occasional longer day.
The ski trail travels along the remote Peer Gynt Mountain Road through beautiful mountain scenery. The nature and traditional culture of Gudbrandsdalen have been a source of inspiration to several artists. The myths and stories hold everything from trolls to historical people, like the local Per Gynt. The same character that inspired Henrik Ibsen when he wrote his world famous masterpiece, Peer Gynt. The real Per Gynt once lived in the village of Sødorp by Vinstra, and has given his name to this mountain area. The region is well known for its natural beauty and there are good chances of seeing wildlife such as elk, foxes and birds of prey along the way, it also gives magnificent views of the Jotunheimen and Rondane mountain ranges.
Our tour offers approximately 120 km of skiing and for those wanting to explore more there will be opportunities for further skiing on some afternoons. Destinations along the trail include Espedalen, Fefor, Gålå, Kvitfjell (home of the '94 Lillehammer Olympics) and Skeikampen - all well known ski areas with long traditions of some of the best cross-country skiing terrain in Norway.
In Espedalen they begin to prepare the tracks as soon as they have enough snow and continue until mid-April /after Easter. Track machines in Espedalen have GPS with GSM transmitters so that the status of preparation are updated in real time and published on www.skisporet.no.
King Bore - 'King of Winter' from Nordic mythology says he can't promise anything, but in Dalseter they begin to prepare the tracks as soon as they have enough snow in December and continue until mid-April or after Easter.
We always aim to complete the itinerary as outlined below. However it will be followed only when conditions and weather make it appropriate, both in terms of safety and enjoyment. Your guide will make a decision on your route based on those conditions.
Day 1 Meet in the Espedalen Valley
Your guide will meet you at the family run hotel at the top of the Espedalen Valley. One of the oldest settled sites in the area, the hotel has superb views across the lake and the mountains of the Jotunheim National Park. On arrival you can fully relax and take in the calm of the wilderness as we will spend two nights at the Dalseter Hotel.
We suggest that flights are made to Oslo Gardermoen Airport. You can fly to Trop, and then travel into Oslo. We ask you to plan your flights to allow you to take the train at 1429hrs, which is a journey of about 2.5hrs. The latest train timetables are published 3 months beforehand, but the time varies very little. By taking this train you will benefit from our group transfer from the station at Vinstra which is included in your trip fee. If you choose to take another train please note the transfer from Vinstra is not included. If you think your flight will not make the 1429hrs train, please contact us before booking your flights to discuss the options. Train details are given below in Further Information.
Day 2 & 3 Espedalen Day Tours
The Espedalen Valley, once a mining area, is a popular ski area for locals offering a first class selection of well maintained trails. There are 220km of well groomed tracks (enough to keep you busy for a week or two!) and is the official start of the Peer Gynt Mountain Road. We have many options available to us for finding our ski legs and making use of the vast network of trails running straight past our hotel door. For those renting skis locally you will have a chance to get used to your equipment and if you've chosen to ski on traditional 'waxable' skis then your guide will show you how to prepare them. Skied that are waxed glide extremely well and it really is not difficult to learn the art of waxing. Excursions include lakeside tours, views to the Jotunheim peaks and drinks at the delightful Bingsbu 'warming' hut. After your ski enjoy a swim and a sauna in the hotel spa. Each day our ascent is approx 400-550m, so nothing too challenging. Distance 15 km+ per day.
Day 4 Dalseter to Fefor
Today make our way to official start from Dalseter and commence the Peer Gynt Løype. A gentle climb leads to easier ground in the Hattdal Valley, through birch trees until we reach the start of a fun descent with views of the Rondane mountains on the horizon. Our trail twists and turns down through the pine forests until we reach the farms on the outskirts of Fefor, our destination for the night. With views of the Rutenfjell mountain and stunning frozen lake our historic hotel, built in 1891, was once a simple farm guest house. This soon became the winter residence for King Haakan and his family between 1907-1914, then later owned by the Dutch Queen Wilhelmine. Today the Fefor Høifjellshotel has kept it's rich character offering excellent accommodation and recently opened a newly built swimming pool. Ascent 231m. Descent 268m. Distance 18 km.
Day 5 Fefor to Gålå
Our trail runs directly on from the hotel in Fefor and takes an undulating route with some excellent downhill into the woodland below, it then heads alongside the Gålåvatnet lake to the well known cross country ski area of Gålå itself. We plan to arrive for lunch so your afternoon allows time to rest, shop & sauna or a chance to explore the areas numerous trails on the plateau. Gålå, home to where the first Gudbrandsdal cheese was first made in 1863, is a small ski town with just two hotels nestled in hillside with extensive views across towards Espedalen. Surrounded by charming Norwegian style log cabins Gålå is yet another idyllic lakeside setting. At the beginning of August, a performance of Henrik Ibsen’s 'Peer Gynt' with music by Grieg is arranged at the outdoor arena by Gålåvatn lake. We stay at the well located Wadahl Hotel with superb views over the Gala Lake. Ascent 297m. Descent 306m. Distance 11 km.
Day 6 Gålå to Kvitfjell
An early start today as we begin our longest day of the tour which offers a brilliant ski with a real Norwegian 'lifestyle' experience, passing isolated homesteads, and villages along the way. As you ski you can ponder the difficulties and challenges of living in an enviornment where winter is long, and the snow is deep, and any expedition outdoors requires skill with a ski-doo or skis. Undulating trails take us to the frozen fishing lake of Vedalsvatnet where the fishers sit immobile on the ice hoping for a 'bite', we then pass the rustic hilltop village of Svinslåa before the long rolling descent to reach the Olympic town of Kvitfjell. A well earned sauna awaits! Ascent 680m. Descent 642m. Distance 30 km.
Day 7 Kvitfjell - Skeikampen
We start our final day by climbing steadily back up to Svinslåa, then a swooping descent to the valley, and on to the crossing of multiple trails at the high col at Skardbua.The col has a wild mountain ambiance and you are under no illusion that you are not truly in the Norwegian mountains. If the weather is kind we will enjoy our picnic lunch before heading down the excellent descent to Skei. This 'home run' provides brilliant mountain views and does indeed give a grand finale to our 100km ski journey. Skei is the most southerly point of our tour dominated by Skeikampen mountain,1123m. We spend our final night at the luxurious Thon Hotel where we can enjoy a celebratory meal. The hotel spa has just been renovated, and offers first class facilities to relax those muscles. Ascent 680m. Descent 645m. Distance 25 km.
Day 8 Departure Day or Extra Days!
We will organise your transfer from your hotel to the train station at Lillehammer, this is included in your trip fee. The train we will aim for is the 0907 hrs leaving Lillehammer for Oslo Gardermoen airport. It arrives at the airport at 1101hrs. NB: these train times will be published three months before travel at which point we will confirm. If you need to reach the airport earlier PLEASE ADVISE US AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. If you choose to leave the hotel in Skeikampen either before or after the group transfer to Lillehammer this will be at your own cost. The trains from Lillehammer to Oslo Gardermoen Airport leave approximately every hour throughout the day, and the train journey takes around 2 hrs.
If you would like to stay on after the tour to ski or explore then do let us know and we can book extra nights in Skei or make suggestions on other ski areas near by. You may like to stay in Lillehammer and ski the many trails above the town.
Included: The price includes full board accommodation (breakfast, packed lunch, dinner and thermos refill) and local taxes. This is based on two people sharing in very comfortable hotel accommodation. Transfers from Vinstra railway station to your hotel, transfer from Skeikampen to Lillehammer at the end of the trip, luggage transfers (1x bag per person), the fees of a qualified BASI Nordic Ski Teacher/International Mountain Leader and their expenses are also all included.
Single rooms can be arranged in advance at an additional fee of £180, please ask if you would like this option.
Not included: Insurance, flights, drinks and snacks. Rail travel within Norway. It does not include ski hire, nor the return of the skis to the hire shop after the trip has ended. The ski return will cost 1200 Norwegian Kroner, and will be shared between those who have chosen to hire.
Skis Type & Rental
For this tour you will be using 'classic' track skis, and can use either a fishscale ski or waxing skis. Ski rental can be arranged locally and will normally be on 'waxable' skis. If you are unfamiliar with the 'art' of waxing then your guide will give you instructions on your warm up day. The stable Norwegian snow conditions enable waxing to be easily picked up and you'll soon feel the benefits of a faster glide on a well waxed ski! Rental is possible from our starting hotel for 495 NOK per person. You can also hire metal edged skis which give more grip and an easier snowplough for 580 NOK. Please advise us if you wish to hire skis, and boots. The ski return will cost 1400 Norwegian Kroner, and will be shared between those who have chosen to hire.
This trip requires a minimum of 4 clients to book before it can be guaranteed to run. We take a maximum of 8/9 clients for a point-to-point tour.
Please note that you must have the appropriate insurance for your chosen activity. You must be covered for helicopter rescue, repatriation and medical costs. With regard to this please be sure you have read the Insurance section in our Terms and Conditions.
Upon booking, a full list of the necessary suitable clothing will be provided.
If you would like to stay on in either Skeikampen, Oslo or Lillehammer at the start/end of the tour then this is possible and we would be happy to advise on accommodation.
To reach the start of the tour we recommend that you travel from Oslo Gardermoen Airport by train to Vinstra where you will meet a taxi to take you to the Espedalen Valley. The train station at Olso Gardermoen is inside the airport and tickets are easily booked on line. You will usually have a much cheaper price if you do this in advance at Norwegian Trains The train to Vinstra leaves Oslo Gardermoen Airport at 1429 hrs. Please make sure your flight arrives in plenty of time to make this connection.
There are currency exchange facilities/banks in Oslo Airport or you can obtain Norwegian Kroner prior to your arrival. Credit cards will be accepted in the hotels. Oslo airport has a left luggage store available if needed, which is at the east end of the arrivals hall.
Accommodation & Luggage Transfers
On this tour you will stay in excellent hotels with good facilities such as sauna's and swimming pools. Our guests are usually very pleasantly surprised by the standard of the hotels in Norway and this trip is no exception. You will only need to carry a daysack whilst skiing and your main baggage will be transferred every day between accommodation points. Luggage will be mainly transported in cars and small vans so we would ask that you keep both size and weight of luggage to a respectable limit of around 15kg (and only one bag per person), it is worth noting that you will be required to carry your own bag up and down from your accommodation every day.
Please note that we run our Peer Gynt tour at a time of year when the snow is usually reliable and the tracks are well maintained. However, in the event of poor snow conditions, we will offer an alternative ski itinerary offering the same quantity of kilometres per day.
As our niche trips such as the Peer Gynt are of a specialised nature we work with our partner companies to attract sufficient clients to reach the minimum number of participants to allow these trips to go ahead, meaning you are more likely to have your chosen holiday 'guaranteed'. Tracks and Trails in these instances may, in collaborating with our associates, make use of their guiding services. If you have any queries with regard to this please contact us.
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