Gruvrundan is one of Sunne municipality’s most popular hiking trails. It is ten kilometers in its entirety, but if you do not have the opportunity to walk the whole trail, you can try the shorter Peckererundan, which is only three kilometers long. If you walk this trail, you will still see some of the industrial history for which the area is known.
Good to know:
- Trail length: 3 kilometres
- Difficulty level: Moderate
- Distance to Sunne: 37 kilometres
- Starting point: Asphöjden parking spot
Mining at Mången lake
In this area, mining has been carried out since the 1500s. The Concentration plant at Karlsviken was in operations around 1895-1905, and the mine was run by a man named Emil Pay. A few years after his death, the mine was closed down. When the mine was in operation there was a port of shipment at Karlsvik and there would probably have been a locomotive-driven saw, a cable-driven machine house, a furnace, a laundry, a concentration plant, food shops and housing on this site. Probably everything was abandoned around the turn of the previous century 18-1900.
Walk the Peckererundan
When you are going to hike the Peckererundan, you should start at Asphöjden car park and go north toward Karlsvik. Here you can follow a bit of the old cable car route. At the beginning, you pass a suspended transport basket. It is one of the many baskets that transported ore from the Storgruvan a whole kilometer down to the industrial area at Karlsviken.
Who was the notorious ‘Peckeregutt’?
The term Peckeregutten, after which this trail is named, actually refers to Nils Olsson. He lived at Pickerud between 1826 and 1896. He was here before the start of a concentration plant at Karlsvik. The story of the Peckeregutt is widely known. Nils Olson was very strong and his powerful and large body contributed to these stories. It’s said he had size 54 in shoes! A couple of his shoes are still preserved in the community centre at Gräsmark.
When you arrive at Karlsvik you will find an information board and a picnic table in addition to the industrial remains. Here you can also see the great stone that the Peckerudsgutten, according to the legend, rolled in the stream as a stepping stone when he was going to bring home a heifer from the forest. The stone is nearly three meters long and has a mass of about half a cubic meter. When you see it, you’re sure to be convinced of the strength of Nils Olsson, Peckeregutten.
Passing Peckeregutten’s home.
You are now part of what we call the Finnskogen. (Finnish forest) This is where the forest Finns came to in the 1600s, invited by the king. Here they had to work hard and some of their income went to the crown. At Pickerud, the path runs across the grounds of the old croft and the foundations of the old house are directly above the path. This is where Peckerudsgutten lived for most of his life. When his parents died, Peckeregutten lived here with her sister Kattrina. She is also said to have been very strong.
A life of poverty in the Finnish forest
It was a poor life here, and meant that Peckeregutten was now and again auctioned out as labour. A way of helping but also exploiting the very poorest people. When the Värmlanders went off to Bergslagen to work with horses and wagons, Peckeregutten had to pull his own wagon as he didn’t own a horse. The wagons were often heavily loaded, up to 2 1/2 lispounds (425 kg).
Kattrina, the strong sister
The Peckeregutten’s sister was as strong or even stronger. One story claims that when she came to the shop to buy herring, a deal was made about the price of the barrel. The deal was that if she carried the barrel home without putting it down, she would get the herring free of charge. On the way home Kattrina carried the barrel on her back, and when she suddenly bowed down, those who followed the journey thought that now she has no strength left. But Kattrina had seen some mature lingonberries, and bowed down to eat them. Consider what it would be like to carry a herring barrel on your hike.
The escapades of the Peckeregutten in Stockholm
During a stay in Stockholm, Peckeregutten was harassed by a few people and when they came to close to him, he hit back at them. The Peckeregutten, Nils Olsson, was enormously big and strong and so unfortunately when he hit out, one of the men died. Peckeregutten was arrested, but his strength saved him. Perhaps the king himself was afraid, as King Karl XV promised that Peckeregutten would avoid punishment if he left the city and promised to return to Värmland and to never come back to Stockholm.
The blue rock walls of Källargruvan
Take the opportunity to make a small stop when passing Källargruvan, “The Cellar Mine”. There are plenty of skarn deposits here. A fence surrounds a ten-meter deep mining shaft with water at the bottom. On the southern edge there is an open, cave-like open-pit quarry where you can see beautiful turquoise shades in the walls.
More history along the hike
Immediately after the Cellar mine, take a left back toward the Asphöjd car park via Gruvfogdetorp. The Gruvfogdetorp was the croft where the foreman of the mine lived when it was in operation. A little bit down before you arrive at the Aspheden, there is a path to the right that passes the Storgruvan.
The inn at Asphöjden
Straight ahead, pass the remains of the croft Asphöjden on your left-hand side. The old garden plants are still there. On the right side a little further down is the now clogged earth cellar, which was used as a liquor store around the turn of the century. If you follow the road to the left about a hundred meters, you can see the foundations of the Inn where many of the miners lived and the cook served the food. When mining operations were completed around 1905, the building was used as a dance venue until the building was finally demolished in 1920.