Rondane National Park, Norway
A DOC Wolfgang Schlitz Adventure Fund Proposal
by Anthony “It Never Snows Enough” Bramante
and Rory “Warmer than the Average Human” Gawler
We will spend two weeks ski touring through the mountains of Norway staying at huts and camping out. Leaving after our Fall term final exams, our trip would take place in mid-December, returning in time for Christmas. Starting outside of Lillehammer, the trek would extend into Rondane National Park, ending in Høvringen. Norway has an extensive self-serve hut system (over 380 huts total) where hikers can find shelter. We will use these facilities for about two thirds of our nights out, camping for the remainder. In the summer there are well-marked trails linking the Huts, but by late-October they are covered in snow, thus orienteering navigation will be necessary. Both of us love being outdoors, especially in the winter, especially when traveling by skis!
What is the background/experience of the students?
- Co-Led a 18 mile winter backcountry ski-backpacking tirp to Black Mountain in northern New Hampshire with Anthony in March 2003. Slept overnight in tents, cooked food on stove very similar to what this trip will entail.
- Winter Mountaineering — Hiked Mt Madison in November of 2002 with Anthony. Summitted, facing winds of 50 mph and temberatures of -25 degrees Celsius.
- Co-led a 5-day, 35-mile winter hike/snowshoe through White Mountains, staying in shelters and cabins, similar to this trip.
- Ample cross-country ski experience. High fitness level, participates on two inter-collegiate sports teams.
- Completed winter camping weekend workshop in 1999, including snow shoeing, backcountry skiing, dog-sledding and bivouacking outdoors.
- Has led dozens of trips in the out of doors involving young children, teens and adults without any serious incidents.
- Has experience making show shelters.
- Is an up to date DOC leader
- Same as first two above
- Thru-Hiked the Appalachian Trail GA>ME March 1st to July 19th 2002. 4 1/2-month expedition involving food and logistics planning as well as combination shelter/outdoor camping similar to what this trip will entail.
- Snow shoed a three day backpacking trip over Mt. Wolf in northern New Hampshire in early January 2003
- Avid cross-country skier, high physical fitness level maintained through daily strenuous running and (when there is snow) nordic skiing.
- Has led beginner backpacking trips and orienteering/route finding courses since he was sixteen-years-old.
- Liberal experience with off-trail travel and navigation.
- Is an up to date DOC leader
What research has the student done into the risks and hazards presented by the proposed expedition?
Both students have held interviews with Brian Kunz, the Outdoor Programs Office's DOC Trainer who has been intimately involved with the planning of the trip. Climactic research has been done and the temperatures and weather are expected to be within acceptable norms. This itinerary was chosen in faovr of one in France and Italy where glacial conditions would have proven too hazardous. The specific area within Norway was picked for its relative ease of travel and less severe weather than other likely spots. The area is very well traveled and has an extensive hut system and infrastructure for this type of journey. In addition, the route will parallel highway, allowing for an escape route should an emergency occur.
What government restrictions or recommendations currently exist on travel to or in this region?
None. Norway allows any U.S. Citizen to come for tourist purposes for three months.
Benefit to the DOC
Both applicants are very involved in the DOC, each leading at least two trips per week; the experience and skills gained spending two weeks skiing through a foreign country would greatly augment their a ability as leaders. This term Anthony is Trails and Shelters Director for CnT, Rory has been overseeing the planning and construction of Moose Mountain Shelter Summer and Fall terms of this year. Both have been DOCTours in the past, Rory acting as head of DOCTours for a total of three terms last year. Anthony will be one of the co-chairs of the Winter Sports Club this coming winter. The applicants dedicated involvement to the DOC more than ensures that the abilities gained with support of the Schlitz Fund will be used to benefit the DOC.
During Winter term, the applicants will present a slideshow and description of the trip during a DOC Smoketalk, advertising to the whole campus for the event. Also, the applicants will lead a two night ski-backpacking PE class over MLK weekend this winter, to be organized through the Winter Sports Club.
-Nine nights in huts
|First night in Lillehammer||$40.00|
|Food||Bought prior to the trip||$200.00|
Lodging: Because of travel schedules, we will have to stay one night in Lillehammer at a youth hostel. The Self-service huts are unstaffed and generally include bunks and a woodstove. They cost $20 per night per person for members and $30 per night for non-member. As the cost of membership is only $25, it would be least expensive for both of us to become members. Unfortunately, because of the severe weather in December, spending every night camping out would be unwise. To defray our costs however, we will spend a third of them outside the hut system.
Food: The general DOC allotment for food per person per day is $10. Because we will be strenuously skiing in winter, the total consumption of food will be much greater. Based on Anthony’s thru-hiking experience, $14 per day will suffice. Rather than spend time in Lillehammer and increase the cost of extra lodging and travel to buy food there, we will buy all of our food in the States. Additionally, food is in general more expensive in Europe, especially Norway.
Flight: The flight would be from Boston to Oslo. Prices range from $500 KLM, to $600 on SAS.
Train: From Oslo to Lillehammer, a train ticket costs $38 one-way. Finishing at Høvringen, we would return to Oslo via bus, approximately $40. In addition a taxi to a hostel and/or the departure point will likely be necessary.
Equipment: There are a lot of small odds and ends that we need to take care of such as a good compass ($30.00), maps, stove accessories ($20), and filling out our ski equipment.
Sources of Funding
|Funding (per person)|
The applicants are applying to the Schlitz Fund for $800 total, $400 per person. Additionally, they will be applying to the Financial Aid Office’s Fund for Eliminating Barriers for $350 per person, though they have been informed by the Financial Aid Office that competition this term is tight and there is still another month before the deadline.