Any holiday taken during the Covid-19 pandemic may be subject to change and with little or no notice of that change. As the past months have proven no-one can predict the situation from one week to the next, however, we will do our very best to gauge the best response to any new developments. New restrictions or guidelines might affect where we eat out, which accommodation we can stay in, and potentially transport arrangements if the numbers in vehicles are restricted.
Itineraries may not be exactly as advertised due to new regulations or restrictions, for example, we may not be able to stop and have lunch at a mountain farm as stated in the itinerary, because the farm has had to react to new rules with regard to serving food and drinks. We imagine that there will be many scenarios which might lead to a change or adaptation in the itinerary.
When booking a trip during the pandemic we ask that you keep an open mind and be willing to adapt and be flexible.
We recommend flying to Gardermoen airport, Oslo. This is the main airport and is easily accessible from Oslo city. It is also possible to fly to Oslo Torp or Oslo Rygge with Ryanair, but you will need to allow more time between Olso city centre and these airports. Transfer links to Oslo are to be found on the Torp airport website. Arrival times should be approx 2hrs before departure time of the train to Finse to allow you to prepare and to store any excess luggage at the airport.
You will require to book your own train ticket for the train to Finse which departs from Oslo Gardermoen airport at 1513 hrs, a journey of 4 hours 44 minutes. Please check with us before booking flights as these timings may be subject to change.
Your guide will meet you at the train station at Finse at the arrival time stated on your Joining Instructions which are sent to you four weeks prior to your trip departure date. You must meet your guide at Finse Railway Station. On no account should you attempt to walk to the mountain hut on your own. It is possible to get lost in the dark!
When you arrive in Finse you need to be ready to step off the train ready to walk to the hut which takes about 10 minutes. Please be prepared for the walk with warm clothes, gloves, hats and ski boots on.
Following our overnight in Oslo city centre you are free to depart. You can, if necessary, leave on the evening of Day 7 if your travel plans require it. Contact us to discuss this option as your flight must be at least 2 hours after the arrival time in Oslo. We would advise that it is safer to plan on departing on Day 8.
From Oslo city centre you can make your way to Gardermoen airport by bus or train:
When booking a trip we ask you to acquire insurance to cover you for the following:
Mountain Rescue Insurance
It is a condition of booking that you are insured against medical expenses, injury, illness, death, mountain rescue, cost of repatriation and personal accident risks. Please ensure that your insurance covers you to the maximum altitude given on your trip itinerary. The maximum altitude for any trip can be checked on the 'At A Glance' box on each trip page. Most of our trips have a maximum altitude of 3,000 metres. If you are unsure or are joining a bespoke trip, then please ask us for specific details.
Trip Cancellation/Curtailment Insurance
You should also have insurance to cover trip cancellation and curtailment. Please note that your deposit and balance payments are non-refundable, unless it is Tracks and Trails who cancel the trip due to a failure to reach the required minimum numbers. In this case we will offer you a refund or the option of transferring to another trip if one is available. We also advise that you should have insurance which covers baggage loss/equipment damage as Tracks and Trails will not be held responsible for loss/damage to baggage/equipment.
As well as medical cover, we recommend that you have appropriate travel insurance so that if you fall ill and test positive for COVID-19 prior to (or during) your trip, you will be financially covered for cancelling your trip. You should also consider booking a policy that covers you if you have to cancel or curtail your holiday because you have to self-isolate. If you choose to cancel, cancellation charges will be payable, but if the reason for your cancellation is covered under the terms of your insurance policy, you may be able to reclaim these charges. Please read the clauses below detailing trip cancellation and curtailment.
Travel Insurance covering COVID-19 is now available from a number of suppliers, Campbell Irvine, Trailfinders and Staysure. Please check their websites for the latest information on what is and isn't covered. It is likely that more companies will offer COVID related cover in the future.
All of the above insurances are detailed in our Terms and Conditions.
If you are joining a trip in the UK helicopter/mountain rescue insurance is not required as this is a free service.
For further details, please read the Insurance section on our website.
Winter temperatures in Scandinavia are 'according to the locals' warmer in recent years than previously which is why we now run trips in the months of January, and February, as well as March and April. Even in January when the daylight hours are short we find that we have more than enough time for skiing. We have never yet had guests feeling they were losing out in terms of ski hours by booking in January or February. There is a special pleasure to starting your ski day in the sunrise, and skiing back with the sunset.
Historically temperatures in December have averaged -8°Celsius (17.4°F), in January -9.7°Celsius (14.5°F), in February -9.2°Celsius (15.4°F), in March -6.6°Celsius (20.1°F), and in April -2.3°Celsius (27.9°). Clearly there is the potential for temperatures to drop much lower, but rarely lower than -15°C (5°F).
We have found over the years that these temperatures have not been unpleasant nor have any guests had problems dealing with the weather as it is generally a 'dry' cold, and of course this helps create great snow and therefore great ski tracks. If we do experience a cold snap where temperatures drop then we ensure that everyone is appropriately clothed and kitted out for the ski day. In this respect energy snacks and a thermos with a hot drink are a great comfort!
If you are booked on one of our 'Advanced' or 'Challenging' point-to-point journeys and we experience very cold temperatures eg -15°Celsius (5°F) then we would expect you to be able to be efficient and keep moving and to manage your comfort.
Please refer to 'Type of Skis' for rental information. There is no ski pass required for this trip.
The skis and boots required for this trip are metal-edged Nordic touring skis similar in width to the Fischer E99, or Fischer E109. Boots should be leather or soft plastic, such as the Garmont Excursion, with Vibram soles. Poles should be of touring length and fit snugly into the armpit with the basket on the snow surface. It is not convenient to hire equipment in Norway, and indeed is very difficult. This is largely because there is little demand as almost all Norwegians skiers have their own touring skis and boots.
You can hire from the United Kingdom from Braemar Mountain Sports. They will post the skis, boots, climbing skins and poles to you five working days before your departure date by registered courier with next day delivery. Full length climbing skins are part of the package, be sure to ask for them to be included.
The cost is around £140 for one week, plus postage of around £50. If you are doing two trips consecutively the hire for two weeks is £200. You are not charged for days when you are travelling. This system has been used for many years without difficulty.
It is important that you ORDER your skis, boots and poles as soon as your trip is guaranteed to run. It is also important to discuss with the hire shop your normal shoe size and how this will relate to the type of boots they will supply you with. You may have time to exchange your boots before you leave but the hire shop cannot guaranteed they will have the size you require in stock.
When packing for a trip in the mountains it is important to have appropriate equipment and clothing. This kit list features items we believe are necessary for the weather you will encounter and accommodation you will be staying in.
When you leave Oslo you will take everything you need for the trip in your rucksack. Allow sufficient time between your arrival in Oslo and your connecting travel to ensure you have your rucksack packed and ready for the week.
You can leave any extra luggage in Oslo in the left luggage lockers at the airport. For example you might want to fly wearing footwear other than your ski boots and those and a fresh change of clothing in the left luggage lockers? However, you can leave home ready to ski and arrive at Oslo ready to go. It has been done many times, and it works. To avoid the need to pay to leave a ski bag at the airport you can arrive with your skis simply taped together. At Oslo airport the luggage desk will wrap them for free for your return flight home.
Group equipment - we share out waxes, 2/3 snow shovels, emergency lightweight shelters, a snow probe, and any repair kit amongst the group members.
The preferred skis and boots required for this trip are metal-edged Nordic touring skis similar in width to the Fischer E109, side cut 82-60-70. The 'sidecut' refers to the width of the ski in millimetres; at the tip, the middle, and the tail. You should avoid any skis that are narrower than the E99, side cut 66-54-61, so less than 54mm in the middle or 'waist'. Any narrower and the skis are not appropriate for off-track skiing.
Boots should be leather or soft plastic, such as the Garmont Excursion, with vibram soles. Poles should be of touring length and fit snugly into the armpit with the basket on the snow surface. If in doubt about the suitability of your own skis please contact us.
Skis, boots, and poles - can be hired in the UK. They cannot be easily hired in Norway. For more information on ski hire consult the 'Type of Skis' section of the 'Trip Information' page.
Personal First Aid
**Supplementary snacks if you follow a gluten free or coeliac diet**
Leaders are all first aid trained and carry their own first aid kit
On many of our trips there will be an element of 'group kit' which will be shared amongst our guests. As mountain people you will be used to team work and working together to the mutual benefit and safety of the group.
The 'group kit' will be minimal and usually just a case of sharing a few lightweight 'survival shelters'. For example on a week-long trip you may carry a small shelter for just one day before passing it on to the next person.
If you are booking a trip in winter there will be a few additional safety items. These will be distributed in such a way that no one is over burdened.
Other group items necessary for safety and comfort will be carried by your guide/instructor.
For each of our trips a minimum number of guests is required before we can confirm that your trip will go-ahead. The minimum and maximum number of guests on your trip is displayed in the 'At a Glance' box on the righthand side of the trip page.
We strongly advise you do not book travel until we have confirmed your trip is 'guaranteed' to run. If you book travel before we have confirmed it is 'guaranteed' we cannot be held responsible for any financial loss if the trip does not go ahead.
A single room is only available on the last of this trip whilst staying in Oslo. The single supplement is £65 for winter 2021. When booking a holiday as a solo traveller a twin bedded room comprising of two single beds, is booked as standard. This will be with someone of the same gender unless you request to pay extra for your own room. Single rooms are often limited in supply so if you would like to pay a supplement for a single room we urge you to get in touch as soon as possible. When staying at the staffed cabins we book small mixed dormitories just for our group of 2, 3, 4 or 6 people.
We go to great lengths to work with first class guides and instructors who are passionate about their work. They are all fully qualified, insured, and hold the correct documentation.
Please note your guide/instructor has complete discretion to make a daily decision on whether or not to take the advertised route based on the weather and the ability of the members of the group. They have our authority to make any route changes they believe are necessary in the interests of safety and enjoyment.
Your ski guide will be a professionally qualified BASI Nordic Instructor at the least and may also be a BASI Telemark Instructor. They will hold the Winter Mountain Leader Award, or the International Mountain Leader Award or have the ability and relevant experience to navigate in winter conditions. While in no way interfering with the tour, coaching along the way in ski technique and 'grip waxing' will help you ski more effectively and with less effort. We are always mindful of safety in cold conditions and wilderness areas.
On your itinerary you will find an indication of the amount of ascent and descent you can expect each day. This offers a guideline to how much effort might be expended each day and allows you to decide, based on previous experience, if your fitness and stamina are correct for the trip.
We make every attempt to ensure these statistics are as accurate as possible, but ask you to note that the most modern of technology used to record these details can show considerable variations in terms of ascent, descent, and in particular distance. In other words no two people using GPS devices on the same route will have exactly the same details recorded at the end of the day.
The statistics given should be used as a 'general' indication of the effort required.
Your ski guide will have the maps required for this trip, but if you would like to arrive with your own maps we have listed those which cover the route:
Statens Kartverk Lankartdivisjonen 1:50,000 series:
Turkart No. 2241 Finse
Turkart No. 2661 Skarvheimen - Aurlandsdalen
The above will cover almost all of the skiing you will do, however, the last morning is not covered, and if you wish the map for this section it is:
Turkart No. 2529 Laerdal
There is a new series of Nordeca maps which may be worth investigating as being more comprehensive.
It is useful to arrive at your destination with some cash in the local currency, however, on most occasions it is relatively easy to visit a 'cash machine' after arrival and withdraw money on a credit or debit card. Some of our locations are an exception to this in particular Norway, where the accommodation will often have no facilities for withdrawing cash, but they will take a credit card.
On many of our trips we will visit remote cafes/farms where it is wonderful to enjoy a drink and a cake, at places such as these they will only accept payment in the local currency in cash.
The DNT system of cabins in Norway is a wonderful concept. 'DNT' stands for Den Norske Turistforening, which translates to the 'Norwegian Trekking Association'.
According to the DNT local member associations operate 550 cabins across Norway. They maintain a network of about 22,000 km (13,730 miles) of marked hiking trails and about 7000 km (4375 miles) of branch-marked ski tracks. Each year, volunteers work a total of more than 800,000 hours maintaining this system.
A number of our trips such as our Geilo & Finse Introduction to hut-to-hut touring, Skarvheimen Traverse, Jotunheimen Pines to Peaks, and the Hardanger Classic Crossing require you to be a member of the DNT. Please check the 'Dates & Prices' section of the your trip itinerary. To become a member click here.
DNT Cabins are either 'staffed' or 'self-service':
Staffed cabins serve all meals; breakfast, dinner and a picnic lunch which is made up from the breakfast buffet. Meals are excellent in both quality and quantity! Many have showers (for a 10 Kroner fee) and electricity, either from the power grid or from a local generator. Staffed cabins are open only in certain seasons.
The self-service cabins are equipped with all that we need for cooking and sleeping. Firewood, gas, kitchen utensils, table linen and bunks with blanks or duvets and pillows. We do require you to bring a 'sheet sleeping bag liner' for reasons of hygiene. The cabins are also stocked with tinned and dried food which means we do not have to carry provisions! It is not possible to 'reserve' beds in self-service cabins and it is a case of 'first come, first served'. We aim to arrive in good time to secure the necessary number of beds which are usually in rooms with between 2 - 8 bunk beds. If we arrive late in the day and the cabin is already crowded then as 'members of the DNT' you will have priority over non-members in terms of acquiring a mattress. Please note this may be a mattress on the floor, think of it as camping, but with a roof!
In the self-service cabins we look after ourselves: fetch water, cook food, wash up and chop wood. At the cabin we fill out a payment form which details everything we have used. The DNT then contact us on our email addresses and we make payment for your stay.
During this trip you will experience 'touring' in its purest form as you will set off from Oslo with everything you need for the week in your rucksack. It's a great feeling to have everything on your back, a de-cluttering of life and stripping down to the basics.
With this in mind you might like to leave extra luggage for your flight or any onward travel in Oslo. The preferred option is that you leave luggage in a locker at Gardemoen airport for approximately 630 NOK per week. When you come through the 'Arrivals' door at Gardermoen airport gate you should turn left and walk to the end of the building and you will find the baggage service.
There are also luggage lockers at Oslo central railway station from 350 NOK per week, though cost does depend on the size of locker you use. We have, however, found that on occasion these are unreliable in that they can be fully booked.
A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required for visits to countries outside the EU, such as Norway. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice.
We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:
Note that if your trip involves staying in a mountain refuge/rifugio/hut that electric sockets may be in short supply and for that night you may not be able to charge any items. Although the accommodation will have electricity this will often be supplied by solar panels or a generator and limited to use by the staff. For this reason we advise that carrying a small slimline and lightweight 'battery pack' can be very useful for recharging phones which many of you will also use as your camera.
If would like to spend extra nights in Oslo, the capital city of Norway, we can recommend several city centre hotels:
The Thon Hotel Spectrum is central and approximately 600 metres (1968ft) walk from the central railway station. If you arrive in Oslo prior to our departure to Finse and would like to consider leaving items at the hotel to await your return then contact us to discuss this. We aim to book the Hotel Spectrum for your final night in Oslo on Day 7 of your itinerary, but this depends on availability.
Another hotel which is very central is the Thon Hotel Opera, which is right beside the central railway station, and a short walk from the Opera House.
Both these hotels are part of the Thon hotel chain. We would normally recommend family run hotels, but they are not easily found in central Oslo and we feel that the Thon group do provide good accommodation which is easily reached from the railway station. You will be able to book either of these online.
If you would like inexpensive accommodation in Oslo we can recommend the Perminalen Hotell. The hotel has a choice of accommodation ranging from bedrooms to same gender dormitories. It is approximately 850 metres (2788ft) from the central railway station.
Before booking consider whether you expect to be in the appropriate physical condition on the date of your departure to allow you to fully participate in and enjoy your holiday. If you have any doubts because of an illness or injury it would be advisable to check with your doctor.
For UK residents travelling to an EU country you should obtain and bring with you a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment in certain European countries, but is not a substitute for medical travel insurance. Also note that if/when the UK leaves the European Union that the EHIC card may no longer be valid. Please check this before departing. We advise that you always carry your insurance documents with details of the Emergency Medical telephone number for your insurance provider, and your policy number.
We feel strongly about protecting the environment and do not encourage the use of single-use plastic items. We would ask that you arrive with a ‘water bottle’ or ‘hydration system’ that can be used repeatedly. We would point out that we operate a ‘zero tolerance’ for rubbish, and would ask you to remove all your rubbish items from the mountain even those you consider to be bio-degradable. In particular we ask that you remove any toilet tissue.
You can read our full policy here.
Working across international boundaries, and with various currencies means that the price of our trips can change overnight. We have, however, undertaken to guarantee that once you have paid your deposit the price of your trip is fixed. In this respect we urge you to book early to ensure that you receive the price advertised on our website. The website price may increase due to currency fluctuations, but we guarantee that the price advertised on the date of your booking will be maintained in your individual case.
Prices may vary depending on date.
|Code||Start date||Return date||Dates||Price||Status|
|SHO1||Sun 14 Mar||Sun 21 Mar||
Sun 14 Mar - Sun 21 Mar
|Price: £1495||Spaces available||Book|