This is what we call Fjord View! There is only one thing to say, Skomakarnipa gives you stomach ache. Warning – Do not walk too close to the edge.
We had been talking about this hike for many years. But since it was a bit remote, it had just been with the thought until now. Finally the day was there. As they say in the Sognefjord area; –The mountains are calling on me and I must go…
Fresvik – An idyllic village by the Sognefjord
Today we should experience it ourselves, the world’s wildest and most beautiful view. The weather forecast promised sun from clear blue skies, and we got it. It was a perfect day for a hike to Mt Skomakarnipa.
We spent the night at Sognefjord Hotel at Hermansverk. Next morning, after breakfast at the hotel, we drove along the Sognefjord towards the ferry pier at Hella. We crossed the fjord to Vangsnes and then drove inwards the fjord, past Feios to Fresvik and up to Skard where we parked the car.
I had been to Fresvik once before when I hiked up to Holten on Fresvikåsen and further out to Mulakamben. There you can see almost “all of the” Sognefjord, out towards Leikanger and almost all the way to Kaupanger.
The start – From Skard to Lægdaskardet
It is a seven kilometer drive from the Church at Fresvik to the parking lot at Skard which is located at about 600 masl. This is where the hike to Mt Skomakarnipa starts. It is a walk in easy terrain, and the marked trail is nice to walk. The trail ascends gently up to Lægdaskardet (920 masl) which is the highest point on the hike to Mt Skomakarnipa. Lægdaskardet is marked with a large cairn and signs.
Towards Mt Skomakarnipa – Unmarked trail which is difficult to see
Continue from the large cairn, along the trail that goes obliquely to the left. The trail between Lægdaskardet and Mt Skomakarnipa is unmarked, and sometimes it can be difficult to see it. It is easy to “lose” the track, but it is marked with small cairns. Try to be aware of this, and follow the cairns as best you can. The trail goes “below” Mt Lægdafjellet to Mt Skomakarnipa which is located on the southeast side of Mt Lægdafjellet.
Mt Skomakarnipa – The world´s most insane Fjord View
Mt Skomakarnipa is a mountain edge and not a peak. You can see the fjord as you approach it. Be careful, do not walk too close to the edge! It is 900 meters straight down into the Aurlandsfjord. The view from Mt Skomakarnipa is formidable. You can see almost the entire Aurlandsfjord, all the way to Frønningen where it meets the Sognefjord. If you turn around, you can see Stegastein and Aurland in the far distance, and you can see the outer part of the Nærøyfjord where it meets the Aurlandsfjord. You should walk around and look for the best view, but the view is fantastic no matter where you move along the edge.
Well-known mountains and mountain farms are clearly visible from Mt Skomakarnipa. Two mountain farms that lie over the Aurlandsfjord are Nedbergo and Stigen. We can see Nedbergo (abandoned, 530 masl) from Mt Skomakarnipa. Stigen Gard (300 masl) is hidden behind the mountain Mt Beitelen which we see well from Mt Skomakarnipa, far down to the right. Mt Beitelen (675 masl) separates the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord, and Undredal is an idyllic fjord village down by the Aurlandsfjord, well hidden behind Mt Beitelen. Undredal is the starting point for many great adventures in this area, both by kayak and by foot.
The hike back to Skard
The return back to Skard is on the same trail as you walked on to Mt Skomakarnipa. You can take a “detour” over Mt Lægdafjellet (1149 masl) instead of following the same trail back. There is also a great view from Mt Lægdafjellet, both towards the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord and towards the Sognefjord which is far away. I have not walked to Mt Lægdafjellet myself, and do not know if there is a well-marked trail or if it is easy to “lose the track”. This is in the middle of our common World Heritage area and is a great area to walk in.
We spent a total of six hours on the hike. Part of the time was spent walking around to take pictures and making video. We also spent a little extra time because we lost the track on our way to Mt Skomakarnipa.
Season: Mid June to September, depending on the amount of snow in the mountains.
Planning the hike
You should be in good shape and bring necessary food, water and equipment (proper hiking shoes and clothes). There are not many places where you can fill the bottles with water. When we went hiking the rivers and water were completely dry.
IMPORTANT! The weather can change dramatically in these mountains. This is why you have to follow the Norwegian Mountain Code when hiking in the Norwegian Mountains. It can change from summer and sunny weather to winter and frost in minutes! We recommend you to use map and compass on this hike.
The Sognefjord, the king of the fjords, is the longest fjord adventure in Norway. The fjord is 204 kilometers long and 1308 meters deep. Hike on the Nigardsbreen Glacier, see the Stave Churches, join a Fjord Safari, a Fjord Cruise or experience the Sognefjord in a kayak. The Sognefjord is located in the northern part of the county of Vestland, in the middle of Western Norway.
Accommodation by the Sognefjord
Mt Skomakarnipa – Map Overview