Sandane, Sogn og Fjordane County, Norway

About Eidsfossen

Hiking Distance: roadside
Suggested Time:

Date first visited: 2005-06-30
Date last visited: 2019-07-20

Waterfall Latitude: 61.75578
Waterfall Longitude: 6.24609

Waterfall Safety and Common Sense

Eidsfossen was a powerful waterfall on the aptly-named Storelva (Big River) that literally made us feel like the ground beneath our feet was trembling.

Indeed, the operative word with this waterfall was “power”, and it was most certainly on display during our late June 2005 visit to this region of Norway.

Eidsfossen_002_06302005 - Eidsfossen as seen on our first visit in 2005
Eidsfossen as seen on our first visit in 2005

When we returned to this waterfall 14 years later, it still had a lot of power, but it wasn’t quite as rigorous as on our first visit.

In any case, it was no wonder that we saw infrastructure around the falls indicating that it was being tapped for hydroelectricity.

Yet even with this degree of intervention, the falls was still flowing forcefully.

Imagine how much crazier the falls would be flowing if the hydro infrastructure wasn’t there!

Eidsfossen_003_07192019 - Eidsfossen as seen on our second visit in 2019
Eidsfossen as seen on our second visit in 2019

There was so much spray kicked up by the base of the falls that there were even bold rainbows arcing just downstream of the waterfall’s main drop.

The falls was said to have a cumulative height of 33m, which Julie and I were able to appreciate from a couple of viewing spots.

The Upper Viewing Spot for Eidsfossen

From the upper viewing spot near the brink of its power drop (as shown in the photo above), we also noticed there was a salmon ladder.

This ladder was said to be the longest in the world at 230m as it allowed salmon to continue swimming upstream past this otherwise impenetrable barrier on the Gloppen River.

Eidsfossen_005_07192019 - Looking down towards the hydroelectric facility adjacent to the Eidsfossen
Looking down towards the hydroelectric facility adjacent to the Eidsfossen

I had read after the trip that the largest known catch along this stretch of river was an amazing 26kg!

Anyhow, it was from this vantage point that we truly felt dwarfed by the sheer volume of water that was passing by us.

Julie and I couldn’t even hear ourselves talk from here.

The Bottom of Eidsfossen

After having our fill of the upper vantage point, we then continued driving a short distance downstream where there was a very wide plunge pool as well as a look back at the falls from a distance.

Eidsfossen_039_07202019 - Direct view of Eidsfossen from its bottom across its large plunge pool with the ugly hydro building to the left of it
Direct view of Eidsfossen from its bottom across its large plunge pool with the ugly hydro building to the left of it

Yet even though we were on the opposite end of the large plunge pool, we were still getting so much spray from the falls that it was difficult to photograph.

This was further exacerbated by the fact that the mid-morning sun was also somewhat against us as we viewed it.

Moreover, we were stymied by the muddy terrain around the river thanks to the constant spray so we were limited on where else we could go to change up the view.

Then, there was the ugly power station to the left of the falls that also conspired to make this vantage point a bit less appealing to linger around much longer.

A Different Kind of Waterfall

Eidsfossen_017_06302005 - Eidsfossen in high flow when we first came here in 2005
Eidsfossen in high flow when we first came here in 2005

In any case, most of the waterfalls we had seen in Norway to this point were of the tall and stringy variety.

However, with Eidsfossen, it was definitely about the immense power which contrasted our other Norwegian waterfalling experiences nicely.

So with all things considered, this waterfall had all the makings of being a very highly-rated 4 waterfall (especially with the bold rainbow and the sheer feeling of being humbled by something so thunderous).

However, we ultimately dropped it down to a 3.5 given the hydroelectric infrastructure around it.


Eidsfossen resides in the Gloppen Municipality near Sandane in Sogn og Fjordane County, Norway. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their website or Facebook page.

Eidsfossen_012_07192019 - Looking upstream towards the brink of Eidsfossen with a parallel diversion pipe and some additional segments to the falls as seen in July 2019
Eidsfossen_015_07192019 - Closer look at the base of Eidsfossen with a morning rainbow in its mist during our July 2019 visit
Eidsfossen_036_07202019 - Context of Julie checking out Eidsfossen as she made it down the grassy viewpoint down below on our July 2019 visit
Eidsfossen_044_07202019 - Looking upstream towards the Eidsfossen with a boat fronting the shore of the Storelva in July 2019
Eidsfossen_052_07202019 - Julie checking out Eidsfossen from its base opposite the ugly power station building during our July 2019 visit
E39_005_06302005 - When the E39 veered west after passing through the town of Byrkjelo, we spotted this calm and beautiful lake called Breimsvatnet on our first trip to Norway in late June 2005. The rest of the photos in this gallery took place on this day
Eidsfossen_007_jx_06302005 - This was the view of Eidsfossen from Julie's perspective as she went right up to the fence by the salmon ladder besides the falls during our first visit in 2005
Eidsfossen_003_06302005 - Looking down at Julie being dwarfed by both Eidsfossen and rainbow on our first visit in 2005
Eidsfossen_009_06302005 - Closer look at the sheer power of Eidsfossen as of late June 2005
Eidsfossen_012_06302005 - This 2005 photo shows the Eidsfossen salmon ladder as we looked towards the rainbow caused by the powerful misty storm of the falls
Eidsfossen_015_06302005 - Looking directly at the base of Eidsfossen and the adjacent power station against both the spray and the morning sun during our late June 2005 visit

We drove to Eidsfossen as a short out-and-back detour from the town of Byrkjelo.

From the E39 and Fv60 Byrkjelo, we drove west on the E39 for about over 14.5km.

We then turned left at a very easy-to-miss signed turnoff for Eidsfossen.

Next, we followed the signs along the unsealed road for about 850m to the upper car park for Eidsfossen.

Eidsfossen_004_07192019 - Context of the small car park and diversion pipes alongside the Eidsfossen
Context of the small car park and diversion pipes alongside the Eidsfossen

To get to the bottom view of Eidsfossen, we continued down the unpaved road for about 300m passing the power station and towards an unmarked pullout.

This part of the drive took us about 30 minutes.

Going in the opposite direction, from the E39 and Fv615 turnoff for Sandane, we drove east on the E39 for about 2km before turning right at the signposted turnoff onto the unsealed road mentioned above.

For some geographical context, Byrkjelo was 18km (under 30 minutes drive) east of Sandane, 20km (under 30 minutes drive) north of Skei, 40km (about 45 minutes drive) southwest of Olden, 57km (about an hour drive) southwest of Stryn, 63km (about an hour drive) northeast of Førde, 81km (over an hour drive) north of Sogndal, 132km (about 2.5 hours drive) southwest of Geiranger, and 238km (under 4 hours drive with a ferry crossing) northeast of Bergen.

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Video pretty much exhibiting the entire experience at the official viewing spot for Eidsfossen and the hydro plant

Semi circular sweep of the base of Eidsfossen

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Tagged with: gloppen, sandane, sogn og fjordane, skei, byrkjelo, myklebust, norway, waterfall

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Eidsfossen April 1, 2009 8:49 pm by Peter - A lovely place in a lovely country! ...Read More

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About Johnny Cheng

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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