Ingvar Loco Nordin & Anna Nygren
Lisa's Helmet Hike
(Mårma - Three Pass Trail 2011)

The wind got cooler with the elevation, and the clothing changed accordingly

14 15 16 17 18 19

Chapter 7

Yellow line shows the distance covered in chapter 7, while yellow and red lines combined show the total hiking distance of the day.

3 August 2011 (continuation)

At one section we had to climb across rocks right down by the rushing waters, below a sharp incline where big stones were sticking out of the sand, ready to fall. They seemed so loosely fit into the sand that even a gust of wind would break them loose, and all the while it was impossible to keep a watch up the precipice, since we had to see where we placed our feet. It was a nerve-racking few minutes until we got past that place.

The Mårma Cabin, toilet and storage shack

At 5:30 PM we reached The Mårma Cabin. Nobody was there, which was lucky for us, since the cabin only sports two bunks. An hour later a father and two young kids came by, the father cursing at his bad luck, but pitched a large, nice Hilleberg tent close by at a designed, stone-liberated area. A couple in their late twenties came from the opposite direction, from The Mårma Pass, heading on down the canyon toward Alisvággi. The lady was very talkative, and eased our Mårma Pass apprehension, telling us that anyone with normal fitness could climb it without any problems. They had tented by The Vássačorrojávri Lake above The Vistasvággi Valley, and had come all that way that day.

Anna went down to check the water in the rapids below the hut, but it proved much too sediment-rich, and was unusable. Instead, after being tipped-off by the young couple, I went up ahead along Vierrojohka, and about five minutes away I found a tiny trickle of fresh water across the bedrock, which collected into a minuscule stream with an equally minuscule waterfall, about a couple of decimeters high, behind a stone inside a crack in the bedrock. I removed, with most of my strength, the stone that obscured the access, and placed my flask, and then Anna’s, in the mini-fall, thus collecting the necessary amount of water for our food and drinking needs.

We had moved into The Mårma Cabin, but it proved rather inhospitable. The small window had been broken, and a doubled piece of felt had been nailed across the opening to keep the cold air out, but it also kept the light out, so if you closed the door, it got dark and you had to use your headlamp. The bunks, though, were new and looked and felt nice, and there were pretty fresh mattresses to use too.

Can you see Anna there on top? I took this photo directly from my bunk, through the open door. The next six pictures are the ones she took from up there on high!

I decided to slip into my sleeping bag and rest for a while, and so I did, with the door open. Anna, always with extra strength in store, went for a climbing excursion instead, scrambling up the closest mountain. After a while I could see her from my horizontal position in my sleeping bag on the bunk, as she was moving high up along the ridge like a stick figure.

Here are six pictures that Anna took on top that local mountain, showing the area well all around:

That is actually the Mårma Pass over there, circa 3 kilometers away, looking like a ridge


If you look hard you can make out the Mårma Cabin below! The picture is taken in a westerly direction


Looking back north from where we'd come


Looking north-easterly from Anna's vantage point




Looking south-westerly

At this time I made a lousy discovery. When I removed my socks I saw that a couple of my toes were about to loose their nails, just like a few months before, in April when we skied. I have a couple of hammer toes that are easily affected by pressure, and for which I stand in surgery line, but I thought I had prevented this damage now by using elastic rubber protectors. So much for that. The nails get loose at the cuticle, are lifted off from the back, and cause inflammation, or, if you’re in bad luck, infection. I felt really agonized, and told Anna on her return from the mountain that I might have to cut my participation in our hike short and fly out from the next hosted hut we would pass, which would be Vistas. I had no idea how this would develop, but I knew that we had a hard hike ahead, which would require healthy feet at the very least, to be successful. Anna suggested, in case things got worse, that she could hike to Vistas herself and call for a helicopter from there to pick me up at Mårma. Vistas would be the closest manned hut with an emergency radio link, a full day’s hike away. In the other direction, Alesjaure or Abiskojaure would be two full days away. There is no cell phone connection in these areas.

Anna in The Mårma Cabin, wearing her femme fatale look!


photo: anna nygren


Late in The Mårma Cabin...

(photo: anna nygren)


To chapter 8