Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 61.52957°N / 8.33656°E
Activities Activities: Hiking, Mountaineering, Scrambling
Seasons Season: Summer
Additional Information Elevation: 7329 ft / 2234 m
Sign the Climber's Log

Overview

Geographical classification: The Scandes > Jotunheimen > Visbretind

 

Visbretind 2234 m 

 

Visbretind is a spectacular mountain located in Visdalen near the middle of the Jotunheimen mountain area and the highest of its group. It is situated between the famous obelisk of Kyrkja and the jagged peak of Semelholstinden at the head of the Visdalen valley. Visbretind is separated from Semelholstind by the Visbreen glacier.
As seen from many sides, Visbretind look steep and difficult to climb. Actually the South flank, considered as the standard route to get the top, is a steep bouldery slope and offers an easy route to the summit.

Visbretind
Visbretind

This itinerary is well approached from Leirvassbu refuge via Kyrkjeoksli and it's mostly rock. The beautiful Northern face is enveloped in a glacier filled corrie. The mountain has glaciers on it's East and North-East sides and a sharp North ridge.

Access to the mountain is from either Leirvassbu or Spiterstulen lodges.

Visbretind South side
Visbretind South side

Getting There

The starting point to climb is Leirvassbu Mountain Lodge 1405 m, located in the county of Lom, at the head of Leisdalen, right next to the lake “Leirvatnet”.

Public transportation

There are bus transportation from Oslo and Bergen to Lom and train from Oslo to Otta.

 

Campsite near Leirvassbu
Campsite near Leirvassbu

 

By car

The road to Leirvassbu is reached from Oslo Gardemoen airport by following road E6 to Otta, road 15 to Lom and the Sognefjellet mountain road (road 55) towards Turtagro/Sogndal through Bøverdalen valley for about 30km to the Leirvassbu turnoff. After 20 km you will pass Elveseter Hotel on the right hand side of the road. Continue for another 6 km, before taking a left turn on the private toll road towards Leirvassbu. The crossroad is marked "Leirvassbu". The road starting from the Sognefjell road and leading to Leirvassbu is a private toll road (fee NOK 60). It is open from the beginning of the summer season, 29th of June, until the end of September. If you are travelling from Årdal or Sogndal, you must take a right turn approximately 16 km after passing the highest point of the "Sognefjell" road.

There's no bus to Leirvassbu so if you come by public transport you'll have to tackle the longer walk in from Spiterstulen to the NNE.
Spiterstulen can be reached by a bus from Lom (twice a day during the summer). Lom is reached by bus direct from Gardemoen or by train from Gardemoen to Otta and bus from Otta to Lom (cheaper than the direct bus if you pre book the train journey).

Websites for the relevant operating companies are given below.

Visbretind South flank standard route

Visbretind Standard Route report

Summit altitude: 2234 m
Difficulty: scramble
Vertical gain: 950 m
Exposure: various
Starting point: Leirvassbu Mountain Lodge

The south flank via Kyrkjeoksle and Langvasshøi with Leirvassbu lodge as the starting point is the easiest route to summit Visbretind. A worthwhile route inside a spectacular setting!

From Leirvassbu Mountain Lodge take a gravel road along the West side of Leirvatnet Lake heading Southward. Just after the gravel road starts turning right (SW) into Gravdalen, leave the main road and turn to left onto a trail getting to Høgvaglen saddle at 1518 m. Follow the trail between boulders and granite slabs, getting the saddle, where it's located a small lake near a trail junction towards Langvatnet, Olavsbu and Gjendebu. At this saddle leave the well marked path to Gjendebu and turn to left onto an unmarked trail (cairns) up on the middle of the ridge towards Kyrkjeoksli, a small hill on the right of the trail. After a steeper rocky ground, cross some snowfield (there may be more different trails, all heading to tha same point). At a certain point, halfway on the ridge between Høgvaglen saddle and Kyrkjeoksle, there is a small easy descent down to a saddle from which Kyrkja is climbed via the South ridge. Ignore the trail towards Kyrkja and reach the point 1843, which is the top of the western hill of the Kyrkjeoksle ridge.  From the west end of Kyrkjeoksle follow the ridge in the South-East direction for a further 1½ km, which take you across a long shallow saddle. At the far end of this saddle the ridge gets quite steep as it climbs up to a sharp bulge at 1929 m which is the east end of the Kyrkjeoksle ridge. It's possible not to climb this bulge and reach the other side traversing round the south side, getting a saddle on the East side which is often covered by a snowfield, even in summer. 

Approaching Visbretind
Approaching Visbretind

 

From here the route now must climb a steep 100 meters high slope covered by big unstable boulders. After this tiring stretch there's a flatter area, North of which there are some reddish outcrops located on top of a steep slope. Head towards these red rocks, passing them on the east side, then head north east across some very rough textured bare rock to reach the saddle between Langvasshøi and Visbretind. From this saddle the final 250 metres climb goes up a steep scree slope to the summit. Actually it is much easier than it looks. At the top of this slope is the short summit ridge, then the beautiful summit.

Descent - reversing the same route.

Other routes

- South Flank Route via Langvatnet and Langvasshøi

Same final as the previous route, but the approach from Leirvassbu is different.  This itinerary may be approaxhed also from Olavsbu cabin and Gjendebu lodge, but the easiest starting place of any of these 2 routes is Leirvassbu lodge.

- North ridge with Leirvassbu or Spiterstulen lodges as the starting point

A fine itinerary, involving some exciting scrambling.

Kyrkja seen from Visbretind
Kyrkja seen from Visbretind

Red Tape

There are no particular restrictions in climbing and hiking. Credit card is needed to pay the toll at the road bar along the private road to Leirvassbu (110 NOK in the summer 2021). Visbretind is lying within the superb Jotunheimen National Park, established in 1980, covering an area of 1140 km² and including the 27 highest peaks in Norway. Jotunheimen is located between Oppland and Sogn og Fjordane counties and it's bordered by the great lake called Vågåvatnet, the valleys of Bøverdalen and Leirdalen and the road No. 55 (the mytical Sognefjellveg) to the N and NW, by the Road 51 to the East, by Bygdin, Tyin and Årdal to the South and by the mountain road between Årdal and Turtagrø to the West.

Nature and climate

Jotunheimen

 

 

 

Jotunheimen is a wild area of majestic icecapped mountains, glaciers and wonderful lakes. Norway´s highest peak, Galdhøpiggen, lies within the National Park, together with icecapped Glittertind, only a few metres lower. There are also several large lakes, amongst those the largest one is Gjende. Rapid weather changes can occur, lots of snow in winter due both to the latitude and the high altitude, nice summer with over up to 25 degrees Celsius with sunny weather. Be aware that at higher altitudes deep snow can remain until mid summer. Mountaineering and hiking season varies, but usually they start in late June, being July and August the best months. In this area we can find the highest plants growing in Norway. The beautiful Glacier Crowfoot is the highestgrowing flowering plant, thriving at 2.370 metres on Glittertind, only 100 metres below the summit. Purple Saxifrage and Rose-root or Midsummer men also grow as high as 2.300 metres. Within Jotunheimen National Park we can find a rich variety of lime-loving plants, such as the Mountain Avens and other species, such as Hairy Stonecrop and Red Alpine Catchfly.

Accomodation and Camping

Leirvassbu Mountain Lodge
Leirvassbu Mountain Lodge

 

Leirvassbu Mountain Lodge 1400 m

Situation: next to the lake “Leirvatnet”, just below Kyrkja
Open (Winter/Spring): One week before Easter – First weekend in May
Open (Summer): Mid June – End of September mid June/end of September
Guardian: Tove and Ole Jacob Grindvold
Phone: +47 61 21 12 10 Phone 2: +47 61 21 29 21 E-mail: leirvassbu@topofnorway.no

Spiterstulen mountain lodge

You can pay 50Kr to camp close to either Spiterstulen or Leirvassbu lodges and use the facilities - otherwise both refuges request no camping within about 1km. There are good campsites in upper Visdalen or at Kyrkjaglupen, which are convenient for the North ridge.

When to climb 

Summer is the best season

Meteo

Leirvassbu weather forecast

Public transport

- Fjord1: operate busses from Otta to Lom and from Lom to Spiterstulen - http://www.fjord1.no/en/default.asp?page=1577
- Nor-Way: Norwegian long distance bus operator (for a bus from Gardemoen to Otta/Lom) - http://www.nor-way.no/?lang=en_GB.
- NSB: Norwegian national rail company (for a train from Gardemoen to Otta) -http://www.nsb.no/?lang=en_US

Guidebooks and maps

Guidebooks

Walks and Scrambles in Norway
Walks and scrambles in Norway
 
Anthony Dyer - John Baddeley - Ian H. Robertson
 
Hiking, Scrambling and Mountaineering in Norway, an English guidebook covering Jotuheimen and several other areas in the Scandes
 
Ripping Yarns 2006
Jotunheimen Guidebook
Opptur Jotunheimen
 
Finn Loftesnes
 
125 selected itinerary on Jotunheimen
Selja Forlag 2009
 

External Links



Children

Children

Children refers to the set of objects that logically fall under a given object. For example, the Aconcagua mountain page is a child of the 'Aconcagua Group' and the 'Seven Summits.' The Aconcagua mountain itself has many routes, photos, and trip reports as children.