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Ice climbing in Romsdal, Norway

Sylvia and I wanted to go ice climbing for a week just after New Years Eve 2010/2011 and as I had heard from a friebd that the ice climbing conditions in
Romsdal where very good we packed our gear and drove there. The only problem was that we arrived in a snow storm, and it kept snowing all night and
continued the next day too. Usually it takes quite some time for bad climbing conditions to turn into good, but unfortunatly good conditions can turn bad
in no time. Besides having snow covered ice and very hard going approaches in waste deep snow, there is also a great risk of avalanches, so we were some
what limited as to what climbs we could do. We did manage to get a few climbs in but unfortunatly we could not do the longer ice climbs because of all of
the snow. In any case I have seen some of what the valley of Romsdal can offer and feel rather confident that I will return again in my quest for ice.

We arrived in a snow storm, and it kept on snowing throughout the night.

The first route we got one was a gully at Mjelva.

We were told it was in good condition.

But that was before the snow storm. This pitch looks so easy but moving through waste deep snow is anything but easy.

The crux was to climb under and overhanging rock but is was plugged shut by all the snow sp we had to turn around.

Because of all the snow we did not want to head up the longer climbs with long steep approaches in waste deep snow.

This is a single pitch climb at Sogge.

It was ok, just barely worth the effort.

The approach to this four pitch climb didn't look so bad but the snow was waste deep so it took a while.

It was cold and really windy too, with gusts of wind blowing snow into our faces all of the time...

And the ice conditionals where pretty crappy, making the climbing slow with more cleaning that climbing sometimes...

But I've never enjoyed myself so much on an ice climb before! I guess sometimes when you are in the elements you wake up and feel so alive. Only now can I understand what a true alpinist might be feeling, up in the mountains when the climbing is all but a comfortable day out in the sun.

Romsdal, with Romsdalshornet (The Romsdal horn) sticking up to the right.

Trollveggen (The Troll wall). The size of it is hard to grasp. The steep cliff face is around 1000 meters high.

Out for a walk looking at some ice climbs.

But the conditions made us leave Romsdal. On the way back home we spotted this ice from the road.

It was two 60 meter pitches of nice ice. We did it twice, alternating leads.

It was not steep, but the quality of the ice was the best we had all week.

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