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Planning to Walk St Olavsleden

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
I am beginning to plan my 2018 pilgrimage to Trondheim on the St Olavsleden route from Sundsvall. Some of you will remember that I had originally thought I would do this last year, but I deferred it and walked the CF with my wife.

I was able to pick up a copy of Staffan Soderlund and Marie Sjostrom's guide book recently in Trondheim, and I dropped into the Pilgrim office in Oslo as well.

Next year, I expect to be walking solo. Looking at the accommodation options, quite a lot is for two, four or more, and very little seems to offer just a single bed, eg in a dormitory. Have others who walked this route found that, or are there good options to find accommodation for a person travelling alone along the way?

This is leading me down the road of thinking about being prepared to camp. I expect to start walking at the end of Jun to arrive in Trondheim for Olsok. Carrying a tent is clearly one option, but has anyone had experience with options like swags or bivvy bags as an alternative at that time of year?

Thank you for any any assistance on these questions.
 
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jozero

Been there, going again...
Year of past OR future Camino
CF x 3
From the gear perspective only, I have an OR bivy sack that I'd recommend (link) although perhaps as a 4 season it could be overkill as it weighs in at 900gm. I've used this for my motorbike weekend kit and slept comfortably in various conditions throughout the year with a Thermarest pad (R 3.7) and light down sleeping bag.

What drew me to this one were the poles that keeps the material off your face and reduces my tendency toward claustrophobia. Secondly, the option to have just the mesh covering the head area makes this feasible in warmer seasons rife with winged and footed critters. It states it breathable however I found my normal respiration far exceeded any permeability of the Gor-Tex but no surprise for me there.
 

Bradypus

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
Too many and too often!
I walked the Sundsvall - Trondheim Olavsleden last year but at an earlier time - beginning in early May. There was no guidebook in English at that time. Many of the accommodation places listed in the stolavsleden.com website were still closed and I spent most of my nights in a tent. I did have comfortable and relatively affordable nights in hostels in Ostersund, Munkeby and Borras, as well as a surprisingly inexpensive night at the impressive riding school at Wengen. There is one small wooden cabin free for walkers some hours south of Bracke and a small number of rough 3-walled wind shelters (gapahuk) which are open to all to use. Not enough to allow someone to rely on them entirely though. Being early in the summer I had very little problem with mosquitoes though I gather they are a menace in the warmer months. Some efficient screening is probably necessary to sleep at all comfortably then.

There is an active Facebook group dedicated to the S:T Olavsleden where you may find up-to-date reports from recent walkers. https://www.facebook.com/groups/hikingstolavsleden/ Interest in the St Olav ways seems to be growing rapidly and I think that more is already being done to increase pilgrim facilities. @dougfitz please feel free to send me a PM if there is anything specific you think I could help you with on this one.

PS. How could I forget to mention the wonderful reception at Revsunds Prastgard?! Ruben the owner is very involved in developing the route and is a mine of information. He also provides very affordable single beds for pilgrims in a dormitory in his beautiful rural guesthouse.
 
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cher99840

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2013, 2017 Camino Frances SJPP-Santiago
2015 St. Olav's Way Oslo-Trondheim
2017 VdlP Seville-Merida
When I walked with the pilgrim offices' group in 2015 our housing was prearranged in rustic accommodations. Our group's size fluctuated between 12 and 20 and it was not unusual to find that independent walkers were lodging with us. They paid separately and were not officially part of our group. Sometimes they shared our group meals but paid for their food. They never walked with us; it was just room and board for them. Most, if not all, of these places recommended phoning ahead to make arrangements.
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
When I walked with the pilgrim offices' group in 2015 our housing was prearranged in rustic accommodations. Our group's size fluctuated between 12 and 20 and it was not unusual to find that independent walkers were lodging with us. They paid separately and were not officially part of our group. Sometimes they shared our group meals but paid for their food. They never walked with us; it was just room and board for them. Most, if not all, of these places recommended phoning ahead to make arrangements.
I passed a similar group in 2012 on the Gudbrandsdalen route. Timing this was critical - the group crowded out some places, making it difficult to get ahead of them until there was a place with enough bed spaces for us to stay together. This happened at Meslo Gard - a wonderful place where we had an excellent meal together. The next day, we all attended the Pilgrim's Mass and two of us walked on to Segard Hoel while the group stayed at Meslo Gard for a second night.

I'm not expecting this on the St Olavsleden route, but I will keep my eye out for larger groups starting around the same time as me just the same.
 
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A Sime

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
SJPdP-Santiango (2012), Oslo-Trondheim, Norway (2015), LePuy-SJtPdP-(2017 Sept).
I walked from Oslo to Trondheim in June of 2015 and had no difficulty finding a place to stay. I had a friend with me. On the last third of the walk we often stayed where a group from Oslo stayed at their invite. We did pay separately and ate separately. When not attaching ourselves to their accommodations we always called ahead in the morning or the night before for the next accommodation. We never had to tent. Many of our accommodations were on working farms in their converted farm buildings.
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
I walked from Oslo to Trondheim in June of 2015 and had no difficulty finding a place to stay. I had a friend with me. On the last third of the walk we often stayed where a group from Oslo stayed at their invite. We did pay separately and ate separately. When not attaching ourselves to their accommodations we always called ahead in the morning or the night before for the next accommodation. We never had to tent. Many of our accommodations were on working farms in their converted farm buildings.
I walked the Gudbrandsdalen in 2012, a couple of years before you. The difficulty was not finding a place to stay but finding a place for one. At camping grounds in particular, I found myself paying for a hut with four beds. This drove up the costs significantly. Looking at the St Olavleden accommodation list, it appears similar in places that I have looked at so far.
 

ranthr

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
C Frances 2005, 2007
Le Puy en Velay -SdC 2009
Via de la Plata 2011
gr 653 from Oloron to Puente la Reina 2012
Gr65 from le Puy to Figeac 2013
Irun to Santander 2013
Porto to SdC 2014
Astorga to SdC 2015
Dougfitz, as Bradypus says, the mosquitoseason will be at top from mid June and on if you want to camp. In Norway "allemannsretten" makes it easier to camp than f.i. in Spain. As long as your not on the doorsteps of somebodys house, that is 300 m away, you are allowed to camp, but on private ground I would ask the owner.
 

Union777

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2017)
Geneva to SJPP (May/June 2018)
I walked from Oslo to Trondheim in June of 2015 and had no difficulty finding a place to stay. I had a friend with me. On the last third of the walk we often stayed where a group from Oslo stayed at their invite. We did pay separately and ate separately. When not attaching ourselves to their accommodations we always called ahead in the morning or the night before for the next accommodation. We never had to tent. Many of our accommodations were on working farms in their converted farm buildings.
I am researching and planning to do this walk this July 2018. I am a 65 year old woman and want to walk it alone. Is the path from Oslo to Trondheim well marked and could I contact you to ask more questions?
 

A Sime

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
SJPdP-Santiango (2012), Oslo-Trondheim, Norway (2015), LePuy-SJtPdP-(2017 Sept).
I am researching and planning to do this walk this July 2018. I am a 65 year old woman and want to walk it alone. Is the path from Oslo to Trondheim well marked and could I contact you to ask more questions?
You could. I celebrated my 70th on that walk. I don't know how to reply to you personally. Like a private message.
 
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Union777

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2017)
Geneva to SJPP (May/June 2018)
You could. I celebrated my 70th on that walk. I don't know how to reply to you personally. Like a private message.
I don't know how to private message here either but could you PM me.
 
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Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018)-Frances, Baztan, San Salvador, Primitivo, Fisterra,VdlP, Madrid
@Union777 and @A Sime
When you see a post you would like to respond to privately you can tap the person’s name and a box with some options will appear. Touch the one that says “Start a conversation” and you’ll be away laughing.
 

lovingkindness

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
.
I am beginning to plan my 2018 pilgrimage to Trondheim on the St Olavsleden route from Sundsvall...

Next year, I expect to be walking solo. Looking at the accommodation options, quite a lot is for two, four or more, and very little seems to offer just a single bed, eg in a dormitory. Have others who walked this route found that, or are there good options to find accommodation for a person travelling alone along the way?.

Hello @dougfitz,
...I've just spent a delightful hour or so revisiting my pilgrimage along the St Olavsleden (2015). I've put together a resource of stages walked and accommodation discovered day by the day. Some of it may be useful to you.

https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/resources/st-olavsleden-2015-stages-accommodation.606/

Cheers!
Lovingkindness
 
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lovingkindness

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
.
When I was walking through Sweden on my way to Trondheim (2015) I stayed with a lady who sang Swedish folk songs. She interpreted an old melody for me, a lonely cowgirl song which I had recently learnt to play on the flute. Anna told me about the unmarried girls who in times past spent their summers away from the farm, in the hills and forests tending cows, goats and sheep, making cheese, singing to their herds and composing lonely songs....

Here's the melody which Anna sang to me: ‘Jämtländsk brudmarsch’, played on the fiddle. And here is a video about 'Kulning', an ancient singing technique used by Norwegian and Swedish women when calling their animals.

Cheers
Lovingkindness
 
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dougfitz

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
When I walked in 2012, I met a woman maybe a decade or so younger than me who had worked her family's summer saeter as a young woman. That would have put it into the late 1970s. I got the impression that it wasn't something she looked forward to at the time.

When I stayed at farm in 2018, it was clear there were no stock there, and I asked about the summer saeter and how it was managed. I was told that several farmers combined forces and each spent some time up at the summer farms attending to the milking, etc. Not only didn't he have any have daughters that could be entrusted with this, he didn't think that he or any of his friends who did would consider sending them up into the hills for the summer any longer.
 
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lovingkindness

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
.
When I walked in 2012, I met a woman maybe a decade or so younger than me who had worked her family's summer saeter as a young woman. That would have put it into the late 1970s. I got the impression that it wasn't something she looked forward to at the time.

When I stayed at farm in 2018, it was clear there were no stock there, and I asked about the summer saeter and how it was managed. I was told that several farmers combined forces and each spent some time up at the summer farms attending to the milking, etc. Not only didn't he have any have daughters that could be entrusted with this, he didn't think that he or any of his friends who did would consider sending them up into the hills for the summer any longer.
Hi there, @dougfitz. How nice to hear from you! Hope all is well down there, on the other side of the world. In the 1970s the Norwegian government introduced a scheme encouraging farmers to combine forces during the summer months, subsidising construction of large milking sheds in high pastures. Perhaps Sweden did the same. I know of farmers in the Trondelag (where the Gudbrandsdalsleden passes) who take turn-about tending combined herds, enabling each other to have a summer break. Near Meslo, I heard an energetic seventy year-old calling her sheep the old way...

Cheers!
 
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nycwalking

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Ourense to Santiago (2019), CF: (2014, 2004, 2002, 2001). On to Fisterra, (2002, 4, 14).
When I walked in 2012, I met a woman maybe a decade or so younger than me who had worked her family's summer saeter as a young woman. That would have put it into the late 1970s. I got the impression that it wasn't something she looked forward to at the time.

When I stayed at farm in 2018, it was clear there were no stock there, and I asked about the summer saeter and how it was managed. I was told that several farmers combined forces and each spent some time up at the summer farms attending to the milking, etc. Not only didn't he have any have daughters that could be entrusted with this, he didn't think that he or any of his friends who did would consider sending them up into the hills for the summer any longer.

My heart skipped a beat when I saw your post.

Glad you’re here.
 

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