Trail section

Rännarehusen – Lillsjödal

  • Length

    10 km

  • Degree of difficulty

    Moderate

Mickael Tannus

In central Skåne, wander over an 80 million-year-old ridge through primordial forest and then as you move south, through woodlands, grazed pastures and idyllic villages. Touch the Ice Age and the Bronze Age in the “elf mills” chiselled into one of the many boulders left behind by retreating glaciers.

Nature

Your starting point is Rännarehusen, a farmhouse with several pastures at the top of Göingeåsen Ridge, an 80-million-year-old horst. Primal forest – mostly beech – covers most of Göingeåsen Ridge. In some parts, the beech trees are not especially old, but the continuity of the forest itself is, and in places it remains virtually untouched by human intervention. You also find oak, elm, aspen, and spruce – some young, some mature, and some dying or dead. Dead, rotting trees are an important part of the ecosystem, as they are prime real estate for many different types of insects, which in turn attracts birds and hopefully bats. Several areas are classified as key habitats, and there is rich variety of flora and fauna.

Near the middle of this hike, northeast of Nösdala Valley, there is an extinct volcano. The bedrock, consisting of volcanic greenstone, erodes easily releasing large quantities of minerals into the soil. The vegetation is lush, unusual. Large blocks of rock and boulders, which have been gathering moss for some 12,000 years, rest silently on the forest floor.

At Björkeberga the landscape opens and there are extensive views out over the many pastures. There is a wide variety of flora and fauna including unusual plants as you make your way to the campsite at Lillsjödal Valley. There is a small lake with a little beach there – maybe it’s time for a refreshing swim.

Cultural History

Sometimes you wander alongside older routes, and you can see the sunken roads in the terrain next to your trail. In earlier times, forests like the one near Nösdala Valley were avoided as evil was thought to dwell here. Imagine earlier travellers, struggling along with their wagons and pack animals at the bottom of these sunken, muddy tracks. It may well have seemed evil.

Close to Horröd there are even older remains; an ice age boulder with more than one hundred bowl-shaped hollows chiselled into it – “elf mills” as they are called in local folklore – possibly used for grinding grain in prehistoric fertility rituals during the Bronze Age.

You pass by ancient villages such as Nösdala and Lunnahöja, and the road leading up to the top of the esker to Brönnestad has been walked at least since the medieval church was built there in the 1100s. Note the unique belfry from 1492, not popular with giants, who were by nature always aggravated by the ringing of church bells. Explore other ruins as you journey along the trail: crofts, mills and at Björkeberga an old distillery.

10 km

Moderate

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