Valldal - Lesja - Dovrefjell
Difficulty: Medium, demanding
Type of terrain: Forest trails, gravel roads, mountains. Steady ascent from start to finish.
Valldalsleden runs from Sylte in Norddal municipality, up Valldalen to Grønningseter, through Reinheimen National Park, further down through Lesja and into Dombås. From here the trail goes up to Fokstugu on Dovrefjell where it connects to Gudbrandsdalsleden. Valldalsleden offers varied terrain, with multiple kinds of accommodation and is considered medium to demanding. This is both due to the slope and terrain, but also because it may be necessary to carry some food and equipment.
This path was St. Olav's escape route in the winter of 1028 - 1029. He landed his ship in Valldal and went over the mountain to Lesja and Dovre. The journey is described in Snorri's "Saga of St. Olaf" which you can find in Heimskringla.
It is a scenic trail with everything from fjord landscapes to steep gorges and mountain terrain. It can be walked in about a week, but it is also well suited for those who want to take their time, who want to reflect on the many impressions that come forth on the hike. Be aware that there may be sudden weather changes and that there may be snow in the mountains until well into the season. We recommend talking to the Pilgrim Center Dovrefjell before setting out on a hike. We also recommend bringing a map and a compass as there may be poor cell phone coverage in some areas along the trail.