Høgstakktinden - Breitinden traverse

A spectacular Senja mini adventure accessed by boat

Ski Touring Difficult

Distance
7 km
Ascent
968 m
Descent
969 m
Duration
4-5 hrs
Low Point
7 m
High Point
656 m
Gradient
34˚
Høgstakktinden - Breitinden traverse Map

The access makes this tour extra spectacular as you will need a boat ride from Torsken village and into Osterfjorden. Are you ready for an amazing tour that offers everything that makes Senja the adventure island it truly is? Sea, ski, incredible views, 2 summits, a ridge scramble and snow on almost all aspects!

Description

We decided to include this route as it is truly a highlight if you can get the chance to organize the boat logistics. It is a short boat ride from Torsken. In addition to a complete adventure "à la ski and sea", the icing on the cake is that you will most likely make first tracks all day!

From the rocky shore, put on skins directly on the beach and head south/south east in the direction of the first mountain Høgstakktinden at 630m above sea level. Skin through the birch forest that quickly gets you up above the treeline.

The terrain is mellow and as you pass under the suggested N descent from Breitinden (the second mountain on the day) you can get an idea of the conditions and snow quality.

To reach Høgstakktinden is easy and from here you have numerous possibilities for the S descent. We have suggested the most mellow line that first takes you down the W ridge from the summit before dropping into the South face. Be aware that you change aspects and the snow will be completely different from your ascent line, requiring understanding of the snow and heating of the sun on the southerly slopes. If you are feeling happy with the snow safety, there are steeper line choices that drop in directly from the summit into the S face, offering skiing in 40 degree terrain.

Descend towards the lake and put the skins back on at about 300m elevation. From here you climb up in the direction of the Bretinden S ridge. The terrain gets progressively steeper. On the ridge you have to place the skis on the back pack and boot or scramble up in places. The scrambling is easy and gives a nice touch of ski mountaineering to the tour. A rope should not be needed but crampons can be a good option if the snow is hard. In spring time, the sun heats up the south ridge quickly and makes the snow soft.

Breitinden - at 662m elevation - welcomes you after around 360m of a climb from the lake. In total you will have ascended almost 1000m before the last descent back down to the shore. Follow the Bretinden North slopes in the direction of your ascending track, enjoying some colder snow again and a nice angle for those big turns!

Make sure to leave some beverages by the boat to enjoy in the afternoon when you are back after this splendid tour!

Alternatives: If the South descent down from Høgstakktinden is not in condition, you may simply ski down the West slopes and skin up Breitinden following the suggested descent line. From Breitinden you also have several options of a descent line choosing either the NE or NW slopes depending on your choice and the snow conditions.

Difficulty

Difficult

Serious gradient of 30-38 degrees where a real risk of slipping exists.

Low Exposure (E1)

1 out of 4

Exposure is limited to that of the slope itself. Getting hurt is still likely if the slope is steep and/or the snow is hard.

Remoteness

4 out of 4

In the high mountains or remote conditions, all individuals must be completely autonomous in every situation.

Best time to visit

February, March, April, May

Features

  • Bowl
  • Face
  • Alpine
  • Ski Safari
  • Ski Mountaineering

Equipment required

  • Skins
  • Crampons

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area