Store Austabotntind, 2204m
Store Austabotntind is a majestic mountain, standing quite alone from the rest of the Hurrungane massive. Its airy and exposed ridges, guarded by four glaciers that eat away at it sides making for a spectacular alpine peak. It’s not a technical climb, even though appearances might suggest differently, however a rope is advisable on the more exposed sections and the final spectacular summit block!
Time: 7-10 hours
Season: Spring to early Autumn
Difficulties: Climbing up to Norwegian 2/3 (4 if a direct route is taken)
Rack: Light mountain rack. 1 x 60m rope. Alternatively, if you intend to rappel the slab it can be done with 2 x 60m ropes or down climbed with just a 30m section of rope.
Additional equipment: Crampons and axe. May not be required if the slab section is completely clear of snow.
After approximately 20mins from the road there is no more water until you get back to this point.
Start: Berdals-bandet on the Tindevegen (Private road running between Turtagrø and Øvre Ådal.) There is limit parking. Please park with consideration.
- From Berdals-bandet to Vestre Austabotntind: Follow a defined track SE passing some small waters east of a top 1483m (last water). From this point go due east over broad rocky terrain until you reach the crest west ridge overlooking Berdalsbreen (glacier). Continue up the ridge with occasional scrambling to the top of Vestre Austabotntind.
- Vestre Austabotntind to Midtre Austabotntind: From Vestre skirt round the top of a steep north facing gully. This gully which is up to 55 degrees is a popular extreme ski run. To access the slopes of Midtre you need to cross a gap. This can be tricky under certain conditions. One method is to sneak around the snow over looking the steep gully on the north side of a small top overlooking the gap or alternatively go south of the small top scrambling down and cross the gap followed by an awkward scramble up the other side. The rest of the way to the top Midtre is straightforward with occasional scrambling sections to the airy Midtre Austabotntind top.
- Midtre Austabotntind to Store Austabotntind: From this airy top it is possible to see the entire ridge unfold. From this top down climb a chimney for a short distance until it is possible to scramble down broken ground. After a short distance a short down climb into a rock crevasse brings you to the ridge. The ridge can be transited with relative ease until a knob of rock forces one of two options. Most parties traverse the knob on the south side following a ledge with occasional tricky down climbs / climbs until it is possible to return to the ridge between this knob and a 60m slab (grade 3). Alternatively climb the knob direct that by a crack on the north side (grade 4 ). The boulder move is short and well protected, however if you were to fluff it the consequences would be dire due to the fact the move is hanging over the north side of the ridge.
From between the knob and the 60m slab, there are several alternative. The difficulties will depend on how much snow has resided. 1) Climb the right hand side of the slab which forms the ridge, at first on smallish holds but soon onto more broken ground for 60m, before it is possible to climb diagonally left to a gap which is north of the top formed by the junction of the west and south ridge (often icy). Alternatively: Climb the snow slopes to the left of the slab.
From the gap continue along the splendid airy ridge to a rather flat picnic area, crossing a snow arête to reach the final spectacular summit blocks. The summit blocks are climbed direct.
Descent is to reverse the route. The 60m slab can be abseiled or down climbed.
Between Midtre Austabotntind (start of the climbing) and Store Austabotntind (The top) the only feasible escape is along the ridge.