Cross-country Skiing: Kamben

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Trip code: 
CYG
Way to Travel:
Guided Group
Activity:
Winter Holidays
Min age:
16
Group size:
6–14

Spend a week cross country skiing in the Kamben region of central Norway

In central Norway, to the north of the town of Gol, lies Kamben, beautifully situated on an undulating plateau dotted with birch and conifer forests. Visitors have been enjoying cross-country skiing on the Golsfjellet for many years and the well-marked trails around Kamben offer possibilities for skiers of all levels. The nearby nursery slope is ideal for practising basic skills and snowplough technique. To the north routes take us to Oset, with its traditional stave church, here we can follow the loipe through wooded snow glades before joining the banks of the river Tislei. A gradual climb to the north west brings us up on to Golsfjell proper, with six summits over 1000m. Each one has a magnificent view over the mountains of the Jotunheim National Park to the north-east and the Hardangervidda to the south-west. On at least one of these outings we will call at the hotel's own cabin in the mountains for lunch by the fire.

Highlights

  • Beautiful Norwegian winter landscape
  • Wide choice of trails and terrain
  • Wonderful hospitality

Key information

  • 7 nights hotel accommodation
  • 5 days guided cross-country skiing
  • Cross-country skis boots and poles included
  • Group normally 4 to 14, plus leader
  • Travel by train and private minibus

 

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 6 lunches and 7 dinners included
  • All accommodation
  • Transfers for group flights
  • Skies, boots and poles

 

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Visa's and Vaccinations
  • Single Supplement

 

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Fly from Heathrow to Oslo; transfer by rail to Kamben (approx.3 hours).

    Start Kamben. For those not on the group flight we strongly recommend you arrange to join the group transfer.

    Meals included: Dinner
  • Days 2-4

    Three days of cross-country skiing

    We prefer not to specify in advance where we will ski each day. This is to enhance the flexibility and adapt to weather and snow conditions and to some extent the ability of each group. When choosing routes, the leader's priority will be to take in a variety of scenery and to ensure that participants become better and more confident skiers as the week progresses.



    Examples of skiing options:

    The well-marked trails around Kamben offer possibilities for skiers of all levels and the nearby nursery slope provides practice for descending skills. Northerly routes take us to Oset, with its traditional stave church, where we follow the loipe through birch forests before joining the banks of the river Tislei. A gradual climb to the northwest brings you on to Golsfjellet, a rolling plateau with six peaks over 1000m, each one with a magnificent view over the mountains of the Jotunheimen and Hardangervidda National Parks. On at least one of these outings we will call at the hotel's own cabin in the mountains.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Free day

    Today is a free day. You can either venture out and explore the area with other members of the group or you may choose to enjoy a day of downhill skiing at the nearby Storefjell resort. Alternatively you may wish to take the historic railway line down to Flam, for a boat ride on the beautiful Naeroyfjord. In winter it’s cold, but still an amazing sight. There is also the option of taking a husky safari.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Days 6-7

    Venturing further afield

    Over the last two days we can prepare for longer excursions and, weather permitting, a tour across the plateau will be undertaken. Heading north from the hotel we will follow the track until we arrive at Oset Hoyfjellshotell, where we will stop briefly for a warm drink before heading west up to Appelsintreet. Grade 2 groups will then head generally south until they reach the grillhytte located at the base of Veslefjell. Here, a fire may have already been lit, if not there is usually wood provided and you can light one yourselves and we can relax with a warm drink. Leaving the hut we will head south east towards the hotel, deploying downhill control where appropriate, but this is a very enjoyable descent with wide tracks. Then following the track behind Storefjell Hotel we will then gently rise before another descent down towards Kamben. Grade 3 groupscan contiune west from Appelsintreet, we may want to proceed further west taking in a broader loop towards Veslefjell, which they may like to ascend, and it is a sustained steep ascent, heading eastwards, before descending down to the grillhytte.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    Meals included: Breakfast

Essential Info

Visas

Norway

No visa required for British passport holders.

Vaccinations

Norway

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

Breakfast, packed lunch and evening meals are included.

The food provided includes ample buffet breakfasts, from which you make up your packed lunch, remember to bring a thermos flask to take hot coffee, tea or hot blackcurrant.

Dinner will consist of four courses, water is served at the table, alcohol is charged separately (see below). Vegetarians are extremely well catered for. Alcohol is not included at dinner.

Approximate prices are as follows: Bottled beer NOK 48, dark beer NOK 65, glass of wine NOK 65, bottle of wine NOK 330, soft drinks NOK 35.

Clients are permitted to bring their own alcohol, but this can only be consumed in your own room, due to licencing laws in Norway.

Weather

Kamben is located at almost 1000m and at this height snow can lie from November to May, with fresh snowfalls at any time. Average daytime temperatures in winter range from 0º to - 10ºC, though they can fall as low as - 25ºC. At Christmas and New Year daylight hours are limited, with about 6 hours of good light plus twilight. By mid-February this has increased to about 8 hours and by mid-March there are about 12 hours of good daylight. At all times of the winter you can hope for periods of clear bright weather and in February and March it can become surprisingly warm in the sun. Equally, at all times you need to be ready for the occasional stormy day.

Is this trip for you?

Cross-country skiing or Nordic Skiing is becoming one of the most popular winter sports. Using longer, thinner and lighter skis than downhill with bindings that let you lift your heel, we explore the winter landscapes away from the confines of the alpine pistes. Cross-country skiing can be undertaken on prepared tracks (loipe) or, as with this trip, off-track, allowing the group to explore the winter landscape.

At Kamben we offer two grades of skiing on different weeks, ranging from improver to intermediate grade. For at least 4 of the 6 days skiing you will be on full day tours, returning only at the end of the day's skiing. Exodus offers cross-country skiing holidays to suit a wide range of technical and physical levels. Our cross-country skiing grades reflect both the level of physical fitness required and the level of skiing experience required. They are comparable to the activity levels we use on our snowshoeing, cycling, activity and trekking holidays, however we believe a slightly different system is required, due to the tuition we provide on our holidays. This sets our cross-country skiing holidays apart, as we tend not to need to teach people how to ride a bike or walk. The aim remains to create groups of similar ability and fitness. Our descriptions are below, however feel free to call and speak to an expert if you are unsure which grade or type of holiday will suit you best. At Kamben we offer grades:

Grade 2 Improvers Equivalent Activity Level – Moderate, level 3.  These weeks are ideal for those who have enjoyed at least one grade 1 holiday and grasped the basics. They offer tuition to refresh and improve technique and typically will ski a little further than Grade 1 weeks, and over more varied terrain. In some cases these weeks are acceptable for newcomers to cross-country skiing. Beginners on these weeks should be very fit and proficient in sports that develop balance. Please contact us if you wish to book a Grade 2 holiday but have not skied before.

Grade 3 Intermediates Equivalent Activity Level- Moderate, Level 3.  A grade 3 week is ideal for those looking to push on, tackle some slightly steeper terrain and cover more ground each day. Typical groups will have a few weeks skiing behind them, be very comfortable with the basics and happy on longer day tours. There will still be tuition on these weeks, at the required level.

 

Accommodation

Hotel

7 nights at the Kamben Hoyfjellshotell

The Kamben Hoyfjellshotell has been owned and run by the Glimme family for three generations, and continues to give our groups the warmest of welcomes. Situated on the tree line, at a height of 1000m it has panoramic views over the plateau and the mountains beyond. Built in 1922, the hotel retains many original features, though all bedrooms have shower and WC. There is a sauna with separate sessions for men and women. The food is excellent and the meal arrangement is for dinner, buffet breakfast and self-made packed lunch.

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  • Reviewed March 2017
    Paola Cassotti

    Excellent skiing and accommodation

    Excellent holiday with many ski routes available to take making each day different. The location is absolutely wonderful. Accommodation at Kamben is very comfortable with varied meals, tasty and substantial. The soups are different each night and all delicious. Ellie, Martin and the team look after all guests with a smile and attentive service. A guest was playing the piano each night and it was so soothing after a day out skiing. I can't wait to return.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Sunrise outside my room in the morning, 26km day in the sunshine with blue ski and an Oreo ice cream stop :), eating lunch outside with no soul around us... true outdoor life.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Albert is charming and entertaining, taking in consideration the different needs within our group and always supportive. Every day he planned a different outing for us depending on the weather and what excellent choices. I hope he will be our leader next year as well!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Layers, mitts for after lunch on a cold day!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Thank you to Albert, the team at Kamben and fellow group members for a great week!
  • Reviewed March 2017
    Peter Clifford

    A skiing holiday with all the positives

    As a veteran of 8 Exodus cross-country skiing holidays, I found Kamben to be the best combination of all the elements needed for a successful trip. It’s the location I’m most likely to visit again or recommend to others. The routes, which are mostly skiable direct from the hotel, range from easier tracks with picnic huts, to undulating forest routes, to high hills with great views, all with the best signposting I’ve seen.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Helped by good snow conditions and great guiding, the 2 long routes we covered on blue sky days are in my all-time top 10%, and every day was enjoyable.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Albert Callewaert had a great understanding of what the group members needed and wanted. I felt he was always 100% committed to the group.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Think about coming on this trip especially if you haven't yet skied in Norway. It's all on track and even has an occasional cafe, while still offering the beautiful landscapes that are unique to Norway.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The hotel is definitely the best I’ve stayed in on ski trips, particularly for the food but also for the traditional bedrooms and the good atmosphere. The train travel from Oslo was a bonus.
  • Reviewed February 2017
    Michael Lewis

    Cross country skiing at its best

    Everything was good: hotel, food, varied routes, equipment. Great to be able to ski from the hotel door every day.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Arriving at a grillhytte for a lunch break with views to the mountains bathed in glorious sunshine.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Albert was friendly, knowledgeable and supportive. Although we had a wide range of skiing ability, he drew us together as a group and enabled a flexible programme to accommodate us all.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The exchange rate for Krone is best from an ATM in Oslo airport, but in practice you will need very little cash. Cards are widely accepted, even on the train.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Although we had discussed this with Exodus beforehand, we overestimated our skill and found the grade 3 challenging at times. However, there were plenty of loipe appropriate for all levels.

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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