AEdnafossen and the Folgefonna Waterfalls

Sorfjorden / Tyssedal / Lofthus, Hordaland County, Norway

About AEdnafossen and the Folgefonna Waterfalls


Hiking Distance: roadside
Suggested Time:

Date first visited: 2005-06-24
Date last visited: 2019-07-24

Waterfall Latitude: 60.13368
Waterfall Longitude: 6.53523

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AEdnafossen (Ædnafossen [maybe pronounced “AD-nuh-foss-un” and alternatively spelled Ednafossen]) was probably the most scenic of the many waterfalls we noticed while driving alongside Sørfjorden (one of the arms of Hardangerfjorden).

What made this waterfall so memorable to Julie and I was its unusual shape and giant size.

AEdnafossen_003_06242005 - Ædnafossen
Ædnafossen

The falls fanned out then converged again as it reaggregated its watercourse at its lower tiers before emptying into the fjord.

The end result of this fanning out and reconvergence action was an impressively giant bulbous waterfall on the western wall of Sørfjorden, which we enjoyed seeing from the eastern side of the fjord along the Rv13.

The falls was said to have a cumulative vertical height of 175m to 200m.

Experiencing Ædnafossen

For all intents and purposes, we treated this waterfall as if it was a roadside waterfall even though we looked across the fjord to see it.

AEdnafossen_003_06232019 - Finding a good pullout to experience Ædnafossen along the Rv13 was harder than you think. This particular pullout was actually a bit too far north of that waterfall
Finding a good pullout to experience Ædnafossen along the Rv13 was harder than you think. This particular pullout was actually a bit too far north of that waterfall

The tricky part was trying to find a suitable place to pull over for a good look at it without putting yourself at risk of getting in a car accident.

I’m sure it could have also been experienced up close from the western side of the fjord at the hamlet of Ædna though I’d imagine getting such a nice contextual view (which we were able to get from the opposite side of the fjord) would be harder to come by.

On our first visit to this waterfall back in June 2005, we managed to find such a pullout somewhere between a pair of tunnels that afforded us a direct view right across the fjord to the falls.

That’s the picture you see at the top of this page.

AEdnafossen_009_06232019 - This was a more recent look at Ædnafossen when I came back here in June 2019
This was a more recent look at Ædnafossen when I came back here in June 2019

However, on a subsequent visit in June 2019, I had trouble finding the same pullout.

Instead, I found alternate pullouts that yielded more angled views of the falls.

Given the high speed of traffic (and stressful driving) on the Rv13 as well as the changeability of where the pullouts end up being, it’s tricky to advise on a best place to stop for this falls.

That said, my preferred stopping place would be at a clearing or resting area on the north entrance of the Rv13 tunnel immediately north of the town of Tyssedal (see directions below).

AEdnafossen_008_06232019 - The old road that now serves as more of a pedestrian and bike path along Sørfjorden for a more relaxed Ædnafossen experience
The old road that now serves as more of a pedestrian and bike path along Sørfjorden for a more relaxed Ædnafossen experience

There was a place to comfortably get out of the traffic, stop the car, then walk on an old paved road that now served as a pedestrian and bike path along the fjord.

It was along the stretch that I was able to better enjoy AEdnafossen on my more recent visit.

I could have kept walking back towards the town of Tyssedal in order to recover that more direct view we managed to get on our first visit, but due to time constraints on my visit, I didn’t get to do that again.

It was also possible to do the same walk in the opposite direction if you can manage to score a parking spot in the town of Tyssedal somewhere near the hydro museum.

Ædnafossen Semantics

AEdnafossen_006_jx_06242005 - Looking back towards Ædnafossen from a little further north on the Rv13
Looking back towards Ædnafossen from a little further north on the Rv13

Regarding some semantics, I’m not even sure if Ædnafossen was the official name of this waterfall or not.

However, from looking at Norgeskart (formerly Norgesglasset), it tumbled on a watercourse that went right through the hamlet of Ædna.

Yet given its rather obscure and unofficially recognized nature, we can’t figure out why it didn’t get as much recognition as we thought it deserved.

Besides, it drained the Folgefonna Glacier so it had staying power.

AEdnafossen_011_06232019 - Looking up towards the Folgefonna Glacier, which directly fed the Ædnafossen Waterfall as well as many other waterfalls spilling into the Sørfjorden arm of the Hardangerfjord
Looking up towards the Folgefonna Glacier, which directly fed the Ædnafossen Waterfall as well as many other waterfalls spilling into the Sørfjorden arm of the Hardangerfjord

And each time we’ve seen this waterfall – in late June 2005, late June 2019, and late July 2019 – it still had pretty significant flow!

Anyhow, we’re rolling with this nomenclature on this page.

More Than Just Ædnafossen

It turned out that Ædnafossen was merely just one of the conspicuous waterfalls that we spotted while driving this stretch of the Rv13 along the eastern shores of Sørfjorden.

Indeed, we had to have spotted countless other thin and not-so-thin waterfalls spilling into the fjord from impressive heights.

AEdnafossen_004_06232019 - Looking across Sørfjorden from one of the rare bus stops along the narrow Rv13.  These were just a couple of the waterfalls I spotted, where the one on the topleft I believe could be called Skyrfossen
Looking across Sørfjorden from one of the rare bus stops along the narrow Rv13. These were just a couple of the waterfalls I spotted, where the one on the topleft I believe could be called Skyrfossen

Perhaps this shouldn’t be surprising because the somewhat visible ice field topping the mountains on the west side of the fjord happened to be the impressively-sized Folgefonn Glacier.

Thus, I collectively dubbed all of these waterfalls the “Folgefonna Waterfalls”.

Anyways, it’s hard to stop for every single one of them, especially given the relative lack of obvious pullouts or sanctioned vistas on the Rv13.

However, you definitely stand a good chance of seeing them when doing this drive in decent weather.

AEdnafossen_023_06232019 - Let's not forget that in addition to waterfalls, there was also mindblowing fjord scenery at Sørfjorden to further add to the whole waterfalling experience
Let’s not forget that in addition to waterfalls, there was also mindblowing fjord scenery at Sørfjorden to further add to the whole waterfalling experience

So I’ll just showcase them in the photos below instead of talking more about them.

Authorities

AEdnafossen resides near the town and municipality of Odda in Hordaland County, Norway. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their website or Facebook page.

AEdnafossen_001_06232019 - Looking across Sørfjorden towards some thin waterfalls from the Rv13 somewhere further north of Ædnafossen as seen on our June 2019 drive
AEdnafossen_002_06232019 - Looking back across Sørfjorden towards a more awkward angle of Ædnafossen during our drive-by in June 2019
AEdnafossen_005_06232019 - More focused look at a tall but thin waterfall a little further north of Ædnafossen during our return visit in June 2019
AEdnafossen_007_06232019 - Starting to walk towards the old road going around the Tyssedal Tunnel and yielding nice views towards Ædnafossen as of June 2019
AEdnafossen_010_06232019 - Looking across the Sørfjorden arm of the Hardangerfjord towards a thin but very tall waterfall draining Folgefonna as of June 2019
AEdnafossen_014_06232019 - Looking back at the context of the footpath around Tyssedal Tunnel providing views of both Sørfjorden and Ædnafossen during my June 2019 visit
AEdnafossen_016_06232019 - Another look back towards the pullout or rest stop nearest to what I think is the best view of Ædnafossen during my June 2019 visit
AEdnafossen_019_06232019 - More zoomed in on what I think might be Skyrfossen or Dettefossen, which was directly beneath the Folgefonna Glacier.  Not sure
AEdnafossen_017_06232019 - More contextual view looking north for Sørfjorden as the sun was on its way to sink well below the horizon behind the Folgefonn Glacier and Ædnafossen during my June 2019 visit
Rv13_036_07242019 - One month later on our 2019 trip, we had to go back through the narrow Rv13 along Sørfjorden and ultimately Ædnafossen again with another chance to see more waterfalls again, especially with the better weather
Rv13_043_07242019 - When you spend as much time in Norway as we have, you learn to appreciate good weather, especially when it happens at Sørfjorden
Rv13_046_07242019 - Looking across Sørfjorden towards some thin waterfalls draining the Folgefonn Icefield
Rv13_049_07242019 - Looking towards other thin waterfalls across Sørfjorden draining Folgefonna
Rv13_053_07242019 - Some kind of boating dock on Sørfjorden backed by some interesting cascades across the fjord as we were driving south along the Rv13
Rv13_058_07242019 - Looking ahead across Sørfjorden towards a more awkward angle of Ædnafossen but at least in good weather this time
Rv13_060_07242019 - Scooting by a large truck while driving south on the Rv13 during our drive-by along Sørfjorden in July 2019
Rv13_062_07242019 - Looking across Sørfjorden towards part of the Folgefonna Glacier and another waterfall coming down from its meltwaters as seen in our July 2019 drive-by
Rv13_065_07242019 - Another contextual look across the fjord towards Ædnafossen from the Rv13 during our July 2019 drive-by
Rv13_068_07242019 - Contetual look across Sørfjorden towards some waterfalls neighboring Ædnafossen as of July 2019. One of these might be Skyrfossen according to the maps
Rv13_069_07242019 - Heavy traffic on the Rv13 allowed us to look across Sørfjorden and appreciate Ædnafossen even more. That RV was the source of this particular traffic jam so it was good that he finally pulled over
Rv13_076_07242019 - Our last look at the attractive Ædnafossen on our drive-by in July 2019
Rv13_078_07242019 - Looking across Sørfjorden towards an attractive cascade somewhere on the northern outskirts of Odda
Odda_001_06242005 - Our 2005 journey to Ædnafossen and beyond pretty much started from the industrialized yet beautifully-situated town of Odda
AEdnafossen_001_06242005 - Our first glimpse of Ædnafossen in June 2005, which was somewhere before we entered the first tunnel north of Odda on the Rv13.  It was this view that got us to realize that we needed to slow down to find a pullout so we could get a better view
Rv_13_001_06242005 - This was the Rv13, and as you can see from that tall waterfall way in the distance, there were many more waterfalls spilling into Sørfjorden in the vicinity of Ædnafossen
AEdnafossen_006_06242005 - Looking straight across the fjord at Ædnafossen in late June 2005.  This was the view we were able to get after finding a place to pull out between the two tunnels on the Rv13 just north of Tyssedal on that first trip.  On a later trip, I had trouble finding that same pullout.
AEdnafossen_007_06242005 - Full contextual and frontal view of Ædnafossen from between the tunnels on the Rv13 just north of Tyssedal during our June 2005 visit
AEdnafossen_008_jx_06242005 - Looking back at Ædnafossen shortly after leaving the last of the Tyssedal tunnels during our June 2005 visit
AEdnafossen_011_06242005 - More zoomed in angled look at Ædnafossen from just north of the second tunnel north of Tyssedal on our June 2005 visit
Rv_13_002_06242005 - Looking across Sørfjorden somewhere north of Ædnafossen towards a very tall pair of waterfalls during our June 2005 drive-by along the Rv13
Rv_13_005_06242005 - Contextual view towards another impressive waterfall looking across Sørfjorden on our June 2005 drive-by. Again, I don't know what was the name of this waterfall
Rv_13_008_06242005 - More zoomed in look at that attractive waterfall across Sørfjorden between Ædnafossen and Ullensvang during our June 2005 drive-by

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Rather than put you on a wild goose chase on advising particular pullouts that may or may not be there anymore, I’m only going to single out the one pullout or rest area that I found to be the most useful for AEdnafossen.

I already alluded to it in the write-up above, but I’ll be more precise here.

If you’re heading north from Odda, drive on the Rv13 about 6km towards Tyssedal.

AEdnafossen_026_06232019 - This was the nearest pullout or rest area that I felt safest to start the Ædnafossen experience on foot
This was the nearest pullout or rest area that I felt safest to start the Ædnafossen experience on foot

Then, stay on the Rv13 continuing past the turnoff for Trolltunga, and drive into the tunnel.

Slow down when you’re about to exit the tunnel because the desired stop is immediately on the left just as you leave the last of the series of tunnels.

That pullout had enough room to support a few truck drivers using that spot to rest. So certainly, there was enough room to pull over there, stop the car, and go for a walk.

According to my GPS logs, it was just under 3km north of the Trolltunga turnoff in Tyssedal.

AEdnafossen_025_06232019 - As you can see in this picture, there seemed to be enough room for a truck to pull over here and for me to do a full circular turn, which was really rare on the narrow Norwegian roads.  That's why I felt it was the safest here to start the Ædnafossen experience on foot
As you can see in this picture, there seemed to be enough room for a truck to pull over here and for me to do a full circular turn, which was really rare on the narrow Norwegian roads. That’s why I felt it was the safest here to start the Ædnafossen experience on foot

I believe it might also be possible to park near the tunnel’s southernmost entrance at Tyssedal before walking along the old road north to get good views of AEdnafossen.

However, since I didn’t do that, I can’t really say more about it.

For some geographical context, Odda is 17km (under 30 minutes drive) north of Skare, 42km (about 45 minutes drive) north of Røldal, 72km (about 1 hour drive) northeast of Etne, 72km (about 90 minutes drive) south of Eidfjord, 134km (about 3 hours drive with a ferry crossing) east of Bergen, 179km (over 3 hours drive with some ferry crossings) north of Stavanger, and 323km (about 5 hours drive) west of Oslo.

By the way, in case you’re wondering, that turnoff from the town of Tyssedal that left the Rv13 and headed up the mountain towards Tyssedalen Valley and the lake Ringedalsvatnet was for the now-famous Trolltunga. I mention this because this was where the hydro-impacted waterfalls of Tyssestrengene (reportedly 646m) and Ringedalsfossen (reportedly 420m) were located.

Deliberate left to right back and forth sweep covering AEdnafossen as well as other neighboring waterfalls across Sorfjorden


Brief sweep showing the various waterfalls from an informal pullout further north of the tunnels with more direct views of AEdnafossen

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Tagged with: odda, tyssedal, sorfjord, sorfjorden, aedna, folgefonn, folgefonna, lofthus, ullensvang, eidfjord, hordaland



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Johnny Cheng is the founder of the World of Waterfalls and author of the award-winning A Guide to New Zealand Waterfalls. Over the last 2 decades, he has visited thousands of waterfalls in over 40 countries around the world and nearly 40 states in the USA.
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