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

The Mårma Cabin and Anna in the morning

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Chapter 8

Yellow line shows the distance covered in chapter 8, while yellow and red lines combined show the total hiking distance of the day.

4 August 2011

I slept badly. Ominous dreams hijacked my senses in the Mårma night, and I woke early and looked out, only to find a grey, cool, damp morning, clouds hanging down to the ground, obscuring the view towards the pass in a dreaded grey scale.

The father and his two young kids who arrived an hour after us slept in this nice Hilleberg tent

However, when were ready to leave at 7.30 AM, after Anna’s mini hike to get breakfast water, it once again became a beautiful day. The clouds disappeared, and the fog dissipated. The air felt amazingly fresh to breathe, and had a comfortable, cool hiking temperature.

The Mårma Pass was about three kilometers away. We could already see it, though we didn’t realize at that point that what we saw was the pass. It looked more like a high steep ridge across the land.

Our shadows on the rocks in the morning sun

My feet didn’t hurt much, so my first go at them, medically, seemed to have worked. My goal, though, was, at this stage, only to be able to get to Vistas, to perhaps fly out. It was a monster hike there; I knew that, so I could hardly imagine that my feet’d be walkable after that.

Cairns always mimic a Tibetan kind of land

The rocky road to Mårma!

Up round the snow field; drawing close to Mårma

We set out toward our longed-for and apprehended and a little feared first goal of the day; The Mårma Pass; a name with an ominous ring to it. I had heard other hikers on other hikes before explain how almost impossible this pass was, how gruesome and incredibly steep and dangerous. On the other hand, I’d never heard of anyone getting hurt on it. Another strange factor about Mårma is the lack of photographs from the actual ascent (or descent). No matter how much I searched the Internet, I could not find any photographs that showed the difficulties. However, I, and also Anna, independently of each other, had found one incredibly detailed Internet account of how to climb Mårma, but it is almost so detailed that you loose yourself in it because of that! We both brought a printout of that account though. We read it a

Incredible formations, stunning colors: The ridge up to Moarhmmábákti (The Hawk Summits)

Summit 1938 (altitude in meters) beyond The Moarhmmá Glacier, looking west

Anna carried an extra two kilos this day, from The Mårma Cabin to the pass. She decided to carry my tent that distance to relieve my wounded toes some. This was very generous of her, because even though her backpack was a few kilos lighter than mine, she was afflicted by back- and hip problems that would flare up at times. For me it proved a true relief, though, those kilometers, and I regained some spirit in the process.

Anna in a wild land

The sun was beating down, but it was cool and nice and no wind. We moved across the rocky landscape up the left (east) side of a stream that originates by a mountain simply named after its elevation; 1468. A long, wide snowfield covers the stream for a while, and we saw footprints on it. We decided, though, to walk a little further and round it across rocks at its beginning, to avoid the tiny, but still risk, of falling through.

The first slow ascent up to the Mårma wall at left! The Moarhmmá Glacier in the distance

I'm marching up to the Mårma wall

(photo: anna nygren)

Before we started the approach to the actual, real live Mårma Pass, I fastened my tent again on my backpack. We each had a power bar and water, before hitting it. At 9:50 AM we stepped on to The Mårma Pass in perfect weather conditions, and in good spirits. We had been waiting for this moment for years. We got on to the rocky wall before us, which disappeared up out of view.

This is where the Mårma climb begins.

To chapter 9