|Stretch:||Footbridge to the Road Bridge|
|Difficulty:||Class IV+ to V|
|Distance:||0.7 to 1.8 miles|
|Flows:||12 to 20 cms|
|Gradient:||308 fpm (this includes optional paddle in, 348 fpm for just the goods)|
|Put-in:||Footbridge over the river, or upstream 0.9 miles past the military base for class IV paddle in warm-up.|
|Take-out:||At the second road bridge over the river as you drive up the river.|
|Shuttle:||1 miles (5 minutes one-way) (the optional put-in is ~0.5 miles hiking)|
|Season:||May and July|
|Featured in A Wet State #102 and in A Wet State's contribution to World Kayak's Video Guide|
Norway 2015 – Day 7
The night before we had gotten a glimpse of the big slide and seen really high flow. We were all a bit nervous about that. But I really wanted to run this river, it is one of the runs that inspired me to come to Norway. So after some discussion we decided to start really early in the morning, putting on around 9 am with the idea being that we are so near the headwaters that the diurnal will be a minimum around that time. And that the water will only rise throughout the day peaking in the evening, about the time we saw the river the night before.
I should also take a quick moment to explain why I have this broken into two. There is some debate about this... but the Lower section can be run with much less water than the upper section. Also, the upper section is harder with big slides whereas the lower section is more rapids, with a handful of slides. So, I broke it into two...
Normally you put in at a footbridge which makes the run 0.7 miles. That with the lower section still results in only a 1.6 mile run. A few years ago Harry and his friends got lost trying to find the footbridge and walked up the river a mile from the military base and found a few fun slides and rapids that extended the run by 1.1 miles. This also provides a nice warm up as the normal put in is either at the lip of a large drop, or in the eddy half way down the large drop with a still very large portion of the drop below you.
Walking up from the end of the road, we passed the military base and continued for less than a km, the dirt road started to climb and we immediately saw the slide that marked put in. This top mile had 3 nice drops and immediately told us that we had not low, and not high flow. But rather a nice medium flow. I couldn't tell you how happy I was. I was prepared to walk every major rapid on the run just to get to see the place. And now I knew I would not only get to enjoy the scenery and water color, but the rapids as well.
Quick note on the water color. Top 4 in the world for me. The color is a vibrant turquoise. The clarity is crystal. And the rock is a light granite that makes the water pop with a vibrance that is unrivaled. The only other water color that comes close that I have seen is the Shimagawa in Japan and the Verzasca in Switzerland. Just so awesome.
Arriving at the normal put in we decide to not run the entry (which does get run frequently though not normally). Downstream laid one big drop after another as well as two portages. One of which though is in the lower. Quickly, we get to the road bridge which makes the start of the Lower section... although the race course starts 3 rapids or so lower.
Thanks to Harald Glanz for sharing photos.
Last: Norway 2015: Day 6 - Tysselva
Next: Norway 2015: Day 7 Continued - Brandsetlevi (Lower)
- Optional Put-in Slide (IV). If you hike up a little ways past the military base you get to a point where the dirt road is next to the river and there is a slide. The slide was a fun way to start the day. We ran down the right side of the island and kept it straight.
- Double Drop Hole (IV). This drop has a constriction at the top before ramping through a series of holes. It then drops down a slide and through a bit of a hole. At high flow I bet this one becomes more series.
Island (IV-). After some boogie there is an island and obviously larger rapid. Most of us went down the far right which was a low angle slide. There was also a line working all the way back left but the turn and accompanying hole and wall made for an ugly line for the one person who went that way.
- Foot Bridge (V to V+). When you get to a footbridge, this is the normal put-in for the Upper run, and it is time to scout. The top part of the drop is most commonly portaged with people putting in on the eddy on the right half way down. The drop is a bit of a clapper before making a 90 degree turn and dropping off a slide with some hazard of being pushed too far right or left. Putting in in the eddy you still have to ferry out and line it up straight. Big drop with big fun.
Portage (V+ to U). Just on the otherside of a brief flat water is the first portage. I have heard it has been run but looks like a back breaker. 40-50 feet tall with a steep angled reconnect. Easy walk on the right.
Small Slide (IV-). A small slide that can be run far left or far right drops you into a little pool.
- Around the Rock (V- to V). Be prepared to eddy out on the right just after a constricted eddy turn. If you don't you will be dropping into this next rapid. Ferry across just below the constriction and go to the far left of the large rock in the middle. Run down the left over a two tiered slide before then either driving hard right or hard left for the bottom hole. Right works better.
Ridge (IV+). Just below the river constricts and fans out over a ridge. The left side of which has a piton rock, the right side of which has a pocket hole. Ride the ridge down and through a few small exit holes. Then eddy out on the right to scout.
- Big Slide (V). The big slide is one of the main reasons I wanted to come to Norway. It is big, and relatively easy, and oh so fun! Just don't flip! Normally people start pretty far right and then just enter and hang on. At the very bottom if you get pushed far right you can collide with the wall so try to make sure you get back to the middle after the wall reactionary waves half way down.
Boogie (III). Some boogie leads to the bridge which marks a normal put-in for the lower section.
Lower Take-out: (if you can run the upper you will also be running the lower) From Voss, take E16 north/East for 28 km. On the far side of the Oppheimsvatnet lake, turn right on Bradsetvegen toward Brandset. Follow for about 1 km to the first bridge over the river.
Upper Put-in: Continue driving 3.0 km up the river. You will arrive at a gate. Park here (we also camped here). Walk past the gate into the military area and continue walking on the far side, on the dirt road. Soon you will see a slide on your left as the river is next to the dirt road. We put in for that slide. It is 1.0 km of walking.
Normal Put-in: From take-out, drive up the same road, you will cross the Lower put-in when you cross the bridge. 750 m after that the road begins to climb. Just before there is a small turn out with a trail that leads quickly to the footbridge over the river that marks the normal put-in.
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