21 Ängelsbäcksstrand - Båstad
Degree of difficulty
From coast to coast across the Bjärehalvön Peninsula, hike the slope of the Hallandsåsen Ridge, at times through lush forest, at times with open, expansive views. Share the unique beauty of Grevie Backar Hills with grazing sheep, and see if you can spot the remains of Stone and Bronze Age graves.
From coast to coast you follow winding roads and paths along and on the slopes of the Hallandsåsen Ridge, formed some 80 million years ago. Grevies Backar Hills are slightly younger. This is a truly enchanting, hill system – a series of long, snake-like eskers actually – left behind by retreating glaciers a mere 14,000 years ago. These hills have been grazed for centuries, and still are. Once you climb over the stiles, you share the pastoral stillness with cattle or sheep, breathing in the many meadow scents such as pasque flowers and saxifrage that the many butterflies also enjoy.
At you make your way higher up Hallandsåsen Ridge, the open view gradually transitions to deciduous woodlands, and at Axelstorp to beech forest. A wide variety of flora and fauna have made this area home. Travel along the edge of a ravine with a creek at the bottom. The slope is steep here, and several waterfalls cascade down to Sinarpsdalen Valley.
As you continue along winding roads, you make your way down the northern slope of the ridge. Lyabäcken Creek runs at the bottom of the valley, and the forests here are even more varied and interesting. See if you can spot a wood pigeon or a woodpecker up amongst the leaves. On the opposite side of the railway near the old Korrödsmölla Mill, is a true point of interest for the amateur botanist: lesser celandine, bush vetch, dog's mercury, and many other fascinating plants grow here.
The villagers near Grevies Backar Hills have been grazing their animals here for centuries. To the south there is a funnel shaped cattle path which villagers used to guide their animals out to pasture. You can wander even further back in time. See if you can spot the small fields and graves from the Bronze and Iron Ages scattered throughout the area.
At Lyngebjärsknall, the present and the past meet. You walk past a shaft created in connection with the modern-day engineering feat that is the 8.7-kilometre-long railway tunnel bored straight through Hallandsåsen Ridge. On the opposite side of the road are the remains of Axelstorp’s outlying fields, now a heathland, decorated with hawthorn and old, traditional wooden fences.
East of Axelstorp there is a 6-metre cliff with a grim reputation. Legend has it that this cliff was used by the ancient peoples of this area (before the spread of Christianity) to dispose of members of the community who could no longer contribute, or who were a burden. The elderly or infirm either threw themselves over the edge in a kind of socially acceptable suicide, or they were tossed over the edge to their deaths. The legend may be true. Or it may be a myth. What is known is that such legends exist throughout the Nordic countries and beyond. What do you think?
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