Galdhøpiggen (English: Galdhø Peak) is the highest mountain in Norway, Scandinavia and Northern Europe, at 2,469 m (8,100 ft) above sea level. It is located within the municipality of Lom (in Oppland), in the Jotunheimen mountain area. Geologically Galdhøpiggen, as most of Southern Norway's mountain ranges, belongs to the Caledonian folding. The peak is made of gabbro, a hard but rather coarse-grained rock which is found in most of the Jotunheimen range.
During the ice ages it was heavily glaciated and got its present form. The theory that the highest summits in Norway stayed above the ice as nunataks has been abandoned by most geologists. It fits well with the present Flora in the area, but it does not fit well with the present knowledge of ice thickness and the results of glaciation.
Access and Modern Tourism:
Access to the top of Galdhøpiggen is not especially hard: from Juvasshytta (1850 metres above sea level, 5 km from the summit) it takes about three hours up (including about 45 minute to prepare for crossing the Styggebreen glacier), an hour at the top and about two hours back. Some days in the summer, a few hundred people reach the summit each day. Guides are needed to cross the glacier, but are available every summer morning.
Galdhøpiggen can also be hiked from the Spiterstulen lodge in Visdalen, with a technically very easy, but still somewhat strenuous climb of 1300 m — nearly 4000 ft. It takes four hours walk up, two hours down. From Spiterstulen, hikers do not have to cross the Styggebreen glacier, and hence a guide is not required. Ardent peak-baggers may count three summits on the route from Spiterstulen: Svellnose, Keilhaus topp and the summit itself.
At Juvasshytta there is an alpine Ski resort with lift on a glacier, with top on 2200 m.a.sl, the highest in Scandinavia. It is called Galdhøpiggen summer ski center and is open from June and all the summer, when the road is open.