Publisert 12.04.2019

Little snow on the glaciers

Generally there is less snow than usual on glaciers in Jotunheimen. Take care when hiking on glaciers this Easter and the rest of spring.

There is very little snow in Jotunheimen this year. Photo: Odd Repp, Statens naturoppsyn/Lom fjellstyre.

NVE's measurements and observations show that there is little snow in the mountains and glaciers in Jotunheimen. This means that crevasses are covered by less snow than usual in many of the popular hiking areas on glaciers in Jotunheimen. Glaciers melted significantly last year, and most of the previous year’s snow melted. When there is considerable melting, new crevasses can be exposed. Hence crevasses can be appear in areas that previously were considered safe.
Hence NVE asks people who hike or ski on glaciers at Easter and the rest of spring to show extra care. Even though snowfall has been the same as usual elsewhere in the country, especially in the north, people should have knowledge of glacier travel and the right equipment to be able to hike on them or cross them safely..

Travel advice on glaciers

  • All those who hike or ski on glaciers should have sufficient knowledge of glacier travel and be able to make safe choices of the correct route.

  • Regardless of season, it is always recommended to wear a climbing harness and have the necessary rescue equipment. Take ropes in order to rope up when necessary and in case needed for rescue. If you’re unsure, then rope up.

  • It is important to be able to judge glacier routes so that you can plan trips up and down where you judge there are fewest crevasses combined with knowledge of local conditions.

  • The strength of the snow can vary greatly. Snow bridges are strongest early in the day after overnight frost. During the day and generally throughout the spring, the snow will soften and it is easier to go through a snow bridge.

  • You can learn about safe hiking on glaciers, crevasse rescue techniques and equipment needed for safety and rescue on glaciers from a glacier course. These courses are arranged by several of organisations (choose courses that follow the Norwegian standard for glacier courses).

    Det er lite snø i Hurrungane, Vest Jotunheimen i år. Foto: Jostein Aasen, NVE

    There is little snow in Hurrungane, Western Jotunheimen this year. Photo: Jostein Aasen, NVE


Forsker Liss Marie Andreassen, tlf: 952 82 401