Tours › 2008 › Mårma › Day 8

Saturday 30/8

Stage map 8

Frippe's fall

Horizontal distance:9.5 km
Vertical distance:+340 m, -40 m, +100 m, -160 m, +60 m, -300 m
Time:4 h 45 min
Lunch break:1 h 15 min
Night accommodation:Cottage
Stage classification:Medium
Map point:Frippe's fall

After another good night's sleep I awoke to the wind howling around the walls, and consequently stayed in bed for some time yet. It was about 08:15 when I got up to look at the sky, seeing quite a few clouds but also a good deal of blue. Somehow I managed to have breakfast without waking my roommate, who did not arise until I was finished. By then it looked much better to the northwest and straight above, and it was my judgment that the clouds would continue to retreat in the other direction, where things were rather dark. For a while it looked like another one of the inner Gorsavággi mists was coming with rain and whatnot, but this time it stayed in the inner parts of the valley, where some fresh snow could be seen on the peaks.

I made some preparations and then spoke with Emma outside, and then inside together with the other woman; the rest had already left. Since I still had one extra day which I had not needed to make use of thus far, I had all but decided to stay for another night in Kårsavagge, and utilize this day to pay a visit to the famed Frippe's fall which lies nearby, and with the weather still improving I made the final decision to do so.

I left around 10:15, wearing the wind jacket; the wind had subsided some, but not entirely. I started out along the path to Låktatjåkka, along which there were large quantities of blueberries (I stopped for munching at some point). While I was still below the waterfalls in the stream from Latnjajávri I left the path in order to cross this stream, which was easily accomplished – and here the stones were not slippery at all. On the other side I had to climb for a bit before I could pass a tributary brook, and then I went pretty much straight up on steeply slanting ground, but progress was fairly hassle-free still.

In the ground itself there were the faint marks of some kind of feet and I could see some mini-cairns at places – and something else I could see were two people coming down the Låktatjåkka path on the other side of the waterfalls. After a while I realized that I was getting too high, and so I turned right and proceeded horizontally for a bit, soon finding more cairns and the unmistakable traces of frequently passing reindeer. A stretch of almost level ground followed, and then both the cairns and the tracks turned up through a little crevice to the actual crest of the valley side. The line of cairns went on up, but here I broke off and found my own way parallel to the edge. I walked straight across the side brook and then up a short but steep slope just as the sun passed into cloud, and the wind had increased as well.

Here the ground consisted of nice grass and I made good progress – perhaps a little too good, as I was no longer close to the edge, and therefore had no direct view of the valley below. To rectify this I turned down past a little pool, descending past a couple of ledges until I was standing on the true edge of the wall – and the sight thereby opened was truly magnificent. I walked back up to the pool, rounded the same, and then proceeded upwards diagonally, passing the next stream just below some small waterfalls – and from there it was not long before I laid eyes on Frippe's fall.

Gorsačohkka 1
Some clouds further in
Sun 1
Kårsavagge cottage 5
Waterfall 1
Passed below here
Waterfall 2
Passed below there
Waterfall 3
Passed above here
Gorsačohkka 2
Gorsačohkka emerging from cloud
Vuolimus Gorsajávri 4
The western end of
Vuolimus Gorsajávri
Steep 1
Steep sides...
Gorsavággi 7
...of the valley
Ptarmigan 1
Ptarmigan by itself
Ptarmigans 1
Ptarmigan with company

The fall is situated at 1080 meters above sea level, just where the map has a group of three small pools close to each other, on a direct line between peak 1297, and peak 1272 of Boazočohkka, but at the time the lowest of these pools was nothing more than a widening of the stream. Just as I approached the fall at 11:45 the sun made a brief return, but then there was nothing.

Frippe's fall may not be that impressive per se – especially when there are a number of more interesting falls all around Gorsavággi – but what makes it unique is its source: the pool that feeds it is shallow enough that the sun often has time to warm it considerably, which turns the fall itself into a perfect natural shower. Moreover, the rock formations together with the usual wind directions make for sheltered showering conditions, and the view over Abiskoalperna to the southeast is not to be sneered at. At the moment the latter was partially suppressed by persistent clouds, but what did appear told of substantial snowfall on the heights. Finally, the terrain in the area is not very inviting for camping, but just beside the source tarn there are terrific campsites, and after checking this out I sat down on a rock ledge just beside the fall – where the wind could not reach me – and had lunch.

During my meal some small flakes blew in, and this soon turned into actual snow, which in turn became a brief but heavy snowfall, and it was an interesting experience sitting there in the midst of it. During a break in the snowing I went for a little stroll, returning when the whiteness increased again, but then it all passed on and there was some weak sunlight instead. I took another walk, going up and around the tarn, then further up the slope, turning eastwards over boggy ground, and finally following a small brook back to the fall. The weather now seemed to be improving on the whole, and after packing up and saying goodbye to Frippe's I started the trek back.

Frippe's fall 1
I see it!
Abiskoalperna 1
Fresh snow...
Abiskoalperna 2
...upon Abiskoalperna
Tarn 1
The tarn that feeds...
Frippe's fall 2
...The Fall
Snow 1
A touch...
Snow 2
...of winter...
Snow 3
...for a bit
Frippe's fall 3
Closeup of Frippe's fall
Tarn 2
Tarn with Boazočohkka in the background
Hoigančorru 1
Hoigančorru without tarn in the foreground
Tarns 1
Tarns with both Boazočohkka and Hoigančorru in the background
Frippe's fall 4
A couple of more shots...
Frippe's fall 5
...of the fall

I now wore both jacket and gloves, for even though the sun was out again the wind was rather chilly. I walked across pleasant grassland only slowly descending, while behind me another bout of snow was passing, and a bit of wetness found its way to my back as well. Later on the ground turned more heath-like as I passed a clear line of large cairns (probably the continuation of those I had left on my way up, presumably also leading to Låktatjåkka) and then drifted down towards a little pool just before the Latnjajávri stream, where the ground was both stonier and wetter. At the stream I surveyed the water straight ahead of me, but since it just there expanded beneath a cliff wall it was a bit too deep (and the stones much too slippery, again) for simple crossing, so instead I walked upstream a (very) short distance where I could get across with almost dry shoes.

Once on the other side I clambered up another short but steep slope, passed the well-marked main Låtkatjåkka path, and proceeded up atop the rise as another light shower struck (no snow this time). I continued down a little bit to the actual edge, where again I had impressive views of the valley. With the shower over I walked back towards the path, which at the end involved some actual climbing; had I been carrying a full pack I would not have attempted it, but rather have found a way around.

Panorama 9
Panorama over Boazočohkka, Hoigančorru and a part of Gorsačohkka
Rocks 1
Ninqui carcar
Fjelds 1
Appealing landscape, methinks
Boazočohkka 1
Steel-grey Boazočohkka
Latnjavággi 2
Faint rainbow in Latnjavággi
Kårsavagge cottage 6
The cottage far below
Gorsavággi 8
Up the valley
Gorsavággi 9
Down the valley

This path is well-trodden and could just as well – at least in these parts – be called a trail, especially with the distinct cairns and all. As the crevice of the stream now sheltered me from the wind the effect of the returning sun was considerable, but after a steep and arduous portion leading out from this shelter the wind came back in full force. Just when I reached the start of the blueberries there came another shower, but I heeded it not and instead took off my rucksack and started picking.

After a while the shower subsided, only to grow back after a few minutes, and then it grew more powerful at that, but still I did not bother with rainclothes since I had a cozy cottage just a few hundred meters away. What was bothering, however, was the combined effect the rain and wind were having on my exposed hands, and it was this that put a stop to my gleaning. With the pack back on I walked briskly the remaining distance back, at some places circumventing the worst of the wet shrubs. Passing the warden's cottage I spoke some with Emma, but since it was still raining this did not go on for long before I continued over to and entered the guest cottage at 15.

Stream 1
Following the stream...
Steep 2
...down the steep slope
Stream 2
A look up
Fjelds 2
A look east
Path 1
A look down
Waterfall 4
Look – water
Vuolimus Gorsajávri 5
Levelling out
Gaskkamus Gorsajávri 3
Sunlight reflected by
Gaskkamus Gorsajávri
Fjelds 3
Shifting weather conditions
Rainbow 1

Inside a fire was already burning, and I proceeded to hang that which was wet to dry and then changed into that which was not wet. I had afternoon tea while outside the weather could not decide what to do with itself, but the result of this was a nice enough rainbow across Gaskkamus Gorsajávri. About then three people were coming from Abiskojaure, taking their time getting across the ford, and there was another trio en route, coming down the slope at the middle of the lake.

I called the railway company and made arrangements for my return journey – the valley is aligned in such a way that one can just get a signal – after which Emma came in and waited for the first trio to complete the ford. Just as they did so the weather took a turn for the worse again, with more of both rain and wind. The second trio crossed the water further upstream and proceeded up the valley, but two other people who were just coming from Abisko chose to stay the night, and they came into my room. Now it was clearing again and I stood outside talking with Emma for some time, noting that the wind had changed direction (but not temperature). This conversation ended with an invitation to pancakes, which I graciously accepted and I brought over my freshly picked blueberries as a contribution.

During the frying a single man arrived from Abisko, and he would also be staying, which brought the guest number up to eight including me – not bad for a cottage with only ten beds, on the side of the common tracks. (For those who have been paying close attention, the "missing person" is my roommate from the day before, who had also been on a day tour to the inner parts of the valley.) Two more people passed by in the other direction as the rain set in again and Emma and I sat down to eat; beside my blueberries we also had cloudberry jam which she had made from the local supply.

We talked until the clouds started breaking apart again, and we both went back to the guest cottage (one of us with a moneybox). While she relieved the people in the other room of some currency I talked with the people in my room a bit, and then retreated from the conversation in favor of reading and, eventually, an evening snack. Outside the sky was only streaked with cloud so the temperature was dropping sharply, and there was no wind anymore. By 21:45 we were all in bed in the contrariwise warm cottage.

Gaskkamus Gorsajávri 4
Evening 1
Evening 2


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