Mt. Molden in Luster in Sogn og Fjordane is a popular hiking goal amongst the locals. The hike is short, and the fjord view is great.
The two to three hours hike to Mt. Molden (1118 masl) in Luster gives you a tremendous view towards the Lustrafjord and the surrounding mountains. The Lustrafjord is a branch of the 204 kilometer long Sognefjord, the King of the Fjords .
The hike to Svarthiller Mountain Farm
The hike to Mt. Molden starts at the parking by the road between Hafslo and Mollandsmarki in Luster (500 masl). The path is well marked, and it takes approximately one hour before you get to the abandoned Svarthiller Mountain Farm. At Svarthiller, you can see towards the southern part of the Lustrafjord.
Svarthiller – Lunch Break with Fjord View
Svarthiller is a great place for a lunch break and to take in the view towards the fjord and to Urnes on the other side of the Lustrafjord. At Urnes, you will find the UNESCO-protected Urnes Stave Church, the oldest of a total of 28 remaining Stave Churches in Norway. The church was built around year 1130.
From Svarthiller to Molden
The hike continues from Svarthiller (865 masl) towards the summit at Molden at 1118 masl. From the summit of Molden you can see the Lustrafjord in all directions. The locals claim this is the best view in Luster, and in Luster there are many great viewpoints.
Just below the summit, on the northern side, there is a shelter (Ernstbui) built of stone. The view from the shelter towards the nortern part of Lustrafjord is epic, see video below.
The descent from Molden
The normal and recommended way back down from Molden is the same way as you hiked up.
It is also possible to hike down to Marifjøra by the Gaupnefjord, on the north side of Mt. Molden. The Gaupnefjord is a small branch of the Lustrafjord. The descent down to Marifjøra is around 7 kilometre long and 1118 metres verical metres. This hike is steep and demanding, and only experienced hikers should hike the trail down to Marifjøra.
The total time for the hike, from the parking by the road between Hafslo and Mollandsmarki to Mt. Molden and back down to the parking is around 5-7 hours.
While you are in the Luster area in Sogn
I can highly recommend you to visit Luster and the Lustrafjord area. This is one of the most beautiful spots in Norway, where the fjord meets the top of Norway with it´s numerous mountains and glaciers. These are some of the adventures you can experience in Luster:
Solvorn and Urnes
Solvorn nearby is a beautiful village down by the Lustrafjord. Here you have the oldest historical hotel in Norway, the beautiful Walaker Hotel. At Solvorn you can take the small ferry across the Lustrafjord to Urnes and visit Urnes Stave Church and the Feigumfossen Waterfall.
At Urnes, you will find the UNESCO-protected Urnes Stave Church, the oldest of a total of 28 remaining Stave Churches in Norway. The church was built around year 1130. A nice way to explore Urnes Stave Church and the beautiful surroundings is to cross the Lustrafjord by ferry from Lustrabaatane to Urnes. At Solvorn you can also rent bikes. From the ferry quay at Urnes there is only a short distance uphill to the Stave Church. During summer you can join a guided “tour” outside and inside the church.
Kayaking on the Lustrafjord
If you want to go kayaking on the Lustrafjord, you can drive to Marifjøra, where you can rent kayaks and equipment from FjordSeal. Guiding and introductory lessons are also available. Read about My kayak adventure on the Lustrafjord.
Glacier hike on the Nigardsbreen Glacier
From Gaupne close to Marifjøra, take to the left towards the Jostedalen Valley and Nigardsbreen Glacier. There you have Breheimsenteret Glacier Centre with its exhibition, multimedia glacier slideshow, information about the glacier and guiding and equipment-rental on the Nigardsbreen Glacier.
Motor Boat on a Glacier Lake
You can also drive to the end of the Jostedalen Valley to Lake Styggevatnet, a “semi-artificial” dam, from where you have a view to the edge of the glacier calving into the lake. From here you have an easy hike to the glacier. If you are close to the glacier, pay attention to the danger that the glacier can be calving into the lake; this can cause big waves and it can be dangerous to stay close to the shoreline. Always use guide on these kind of trips, Ice Troll arrange guided Motor Boat Tours at Lake Styggevatnet.
Veitastrond and the Austerdalsbreen Glacier
From Hafslo in Luster you can drive to Veitastrond. From there, drive the private toll-road to Tungestølen (4-5 kilometre), from where you have a nice and easy 2 hour walk to the Austerdalsbreen Glacier. There you can see 3 different glaciers (Loke, Odin and Tor) falling down from the plateau glacierJostedalsbreen, together creating the beautiful glacier down in the valley named Austerdalen. The glacier has only minor crevasses, and if it’s not covered with snow, it should be fairly safe to walk on it. You should always use rope and guide. Use the guide service from Jostedalen Glacier Guiding, order in advance.
Skjolden and the Sognefjellet National Tourist Route
From Gaupne, you can also drive through Luster to Skjolden and Fortun.
Stay at Skjolden Hotel, a beautiful hotel with local food down by innermost part of the Lustrafjord. You can hike into the Mørkrisdalen Valley from Skjolden and the Fortunsdalen Valley from Fortun. The Fortunsdalen Valley is more spectacular the deeper into the valley you drive, but drive carefully. At the end of the road lies Nørstedalsseter Mountain Lodge, a good starting point for mountaineering.
From Skjolden, you can drive in the direction of Sognefjellet Mountain Road (National Tourist Route) and Lom. The first stop is Turtagrø Hotel, a new and modern mountain hotel, where you can get information and guiding to the Hurrungane Mountains, one of Norway´s wildest mountain areas. Turtagrø can offer guided hikes and climbing on mountains with views over most of the Jotunheimen National Park.
A little further and you have the Sognefjellshytta Mountain Lodge on the top of Sognefjellet. It has fantastic views and is cheap to stay overnight. Guided walks across Fannaraak Glacier to Fannaraaken (2068 metres above sea level) can be done from here. Just a few kilometres from Sognefjellshytta you arrive at Krossbu Mountain Lodge. Guiding across Smørstabbreen Glacier can be done from here.
Pictures from Luster in Sogn
Fjord Tours: The Norwegian Fjords
Fjord Tours: Plan and book fjord travel, accommodation and activities
Fjord Pass: Great Discounts on Activities and Attractions in the Fjords
Visit Norway: Official page for Norway
Fjord Norway: Official page for Fjord Norway
Tourist Information about Luster and the Lustrafjord: www.sognefjord.com
Information about Urnes Stave Church
Norway`s oldest hotel: Walaker Hotel at Solvorn
Bed & Breakfast at Solvorn: Eplet Hostel & Juice Factory
Hotel at Marifjøra: Tørvis Hotel
Guided Kayak Trip on the Lustrafjord: Fjordseal at Marifjøra
Urnes Stave Church
Ferry across the Lustrafjord: www.lustrabaatane.no
Hiking to Mt. Molden – Map Overview