Stodnafossen

Laerdal Municipality, Sogn og Fjordane County, Norway

Rating: 3     Difficulty: 1
Stødnafossen

TABLE OF CONTENTS



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INTRODUCTION

Stodnafossen (Stødnafossen; I think is pronounced "STUED-nuh-foss-un") was a waterfall that Julie and I didn't anticipate seeing going into our June 2005 trip to Norway. However, upon leaving the really long (24km) Lærdal Tunnel (Lærdalstunnelen) then heading into the town of Lærdal, this waterfall conspicuously plunged high off a cliff fronted by residences on the east end of Lærdal, and we simply couldn't ignore it. Julie and I made a brief attempt at getting a better look, but at the time, we were hastily looking to check into our hotel so we didn't do any further exploring to see if there was a better or closer view as we were pretty content to see the falls from the road.

According to the maps, this waterfall belonged to the Åselvi River. The watercourse was sourced by snowmelt from the highlands immediately to the north of town. Since it didn't look like there were major lakes sourcing the falls, I'd imagine that the volume of water would diminish until the snowpack would get replenished again during the Winter months.

It was definitely a wonderful waterfalling surprise to Julie and I, but in hindsight, I came to realize that there was definitely a lot more going on in this region besides this waterfall and the nearby tunnel. Indeed, some 26km east of this waterfall was the stav church (stavkirke) at Borgund, which was said to be the most photographed of all the Medieval wooden churches in Norway. Considering Borgund was along the way to Hemsedal, where we were doing a late afternoon out-and-back visit, it was definitely a big miss. We definitely have to come back here next time!




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PHOTO JOURNAL

This is a picture inside one of the two blue-lit 'ice' sections of the Lærdal Tunnel, which was one of the longest tunnels in the world at 24km. The 'ice' sections helped to break up road fatigueThis is a picture inside one of the two blue-lit 'ice' sections of the Lærdal Tunnel, which was one of the longest tunnels in the world at 24km. The 'ice' sections helped to break up road fatigue
This giant pair of waterfalls was seen between Lærdal and Hemsedal.  I don't know its name, but it could be on the Rv52 either on Heftingsdøla or Galdestølelvi by MørkedalenThis giant pair of waterfalls was seen between Lærdal and Hemsedal. I don't know its name, but it could be on the Rv52 either on Heftingsdøla or Galdestølelvi by Mørkedalen
Prior to showing up to Lærdal, we had visited the scenic Flåm Railway and its many waterfallsPrior to showing up to Lærdal, we had visited the scenic Flåm Railway and its many waterfalls
On our way to Lærdal from Flåm, we noticed this tall stringy waterfall across Aurlandsfjorden shortly before we entered the Lærdal Tunnel (Lærdalstunnelen)On our way to Lærdal from Flåm, we noticed this tall stringy waterfall across Aurlandsfjorden shortly before we entered the Lærdal Tunnel (Lærdalstunnelen)

Stødnafossen seen zoomed in from the Rv5Stødnafossen seen zoomed in from the Rv5

This view of Stødnafossen was the fruit of our attempt at trying to get a closer look while navigating the residential streets of LærdalThis view of Stødnafossen was the fruit of our attempt at trying to get a closer look while navigating the residential streets of Lærdal

Somewhere 30 minutes east of Stødnafossen on the Rv5 was this waterfallSomewhere 30 minutes east of Stødnafossen on the Rv5 was this waterfall

Somewhere near Borgund, we were looking for Sjurhaugfossen, but this photo of some rapids within the Lærdalselvi was all we had to show for itSomewhere near Borgund, we were looking for Sjurhaugfossen, but this photo of some rapids within the Lærdalselvi was all we had to show for it


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VIDEOS OF THE FALLS




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DRIVING DIRECTIONS

We found Stodnafossen on the eastern outskirts of the Lærdal township along the Rv5 (maybe about 2-3km east of town). From Aurland, we took the E16 through the 24km Lærdal Tunnel, and when we finally re-emerged from it, we turned left to go onto the Rv5, and after about 5km we started to see the falls from the road.

We did make an attempt to get closer to the waterfall while leaving the Rv5 to go onto some residential streets, but we didn't get very far so we won't elaborate any further on the directions.

Going the other way on the Rv5 from Lærdal town (Lærdalsøyri), we drove about 2.5km east of the Lærdal Hotel before we could clearly see the falls from the road.

For context, Lærdalsøyri was 206km (3 hours drive) east of Bergen, 82km (over an hour drive) west of Hemsedal, and 337km (over 5 hours drive) west of Oslo.




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ITINERARIES

For more information about our itineraries involving this waterfall, check out the following links.




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MAP OF THE FALLS



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TRIP REPORTS

For more information about our experiences with this waterfall, check out the following travel stories.




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TRIP PLANNING RESOURCES




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NEARBY WATERFALLS




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RELATED PAGES



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