Laksforsen

Vefsna, Nordland County, Norway

About Laksforsen


Hiking Distance: roadside
Suggested Time:

Date first visited: 2005-07-05
Date last visited: 2019-07-10

Waterfall Latitude: 65.62385
Waterfall Longitude: 13.29138

Laksforsen was a significant river waterfall where the Vefsna River fell about 16m in total.

Each time we’ve seen the falls (in early July 2005 and in mid-July 2019), the falls had put on a serious show as it glistened in the afternoon sun or threw up enough spray to yield double morning rainbows.

Laksforsen_001_jx_07052005 - Laksforsen as seen when we first came here in July 2005
Laksforsen as seen when we first came here in July 2005

The Sami people who inhabit much of Northern Scandinavia had mixed Norwegian and Swedish influences.

Therefore, they named the falls with a combination of salmon (laks meant salmon) and a Swedish twist to the word “falls” (fors as opposed to foss).

The Salmon Heritage

In the past, the plunge pool at the base of Laksforsen had the best salmon fishing while the Vefsna River as a whole was the most important river for salmon fishing in Northern Norway.

However, according to signage at the falls as of our latest visit in 2019, a salmon parasite that had plagued Norwegian rivers had also apparently struck this river system, which certainly had a negative impact.

Laksforsen_047_07092019 - Laksforsen in July 2019 with a bold rainbow, but notice the difference between the photo at the top and this photo regarding the other side of the river!
Laksforsen in July 2019 with a bold rainbow, but notice the difference between the photo at the top and this photo regarding the other side of the river!

On the west side of the river, there was apparently a 270m long salmon ladder, which was the longest in the world at the time of its completion in 1894.

When we returned to Laksforsen in 2019, we noticed there seemed to be some kind of construction work going on there, and we wondered if this waterfall may finally be tapped for hydroelectricity.

When we first came here in 2005, that side of the river was mostly forested.

Experiencing Laksforsen

Visiting Laksforsen was pretty straightforward as we could already see the impressive waterfall from around the cafe as well as from through the windows inside it.

The best viewing spots were definitely from the inside of the cafe, but lately I’ve noticed that the owners kindly ask visitors not to take pictures in there, especially if there were people dining.

Laksforsen_039_07092019 - The start of the steep trail leading down to the banks of the Vefsna River and a more frontal view of Laksforsen
The start of the steep trail leading down to the banks of the Vefsna River and a more frontal view of Laksforsen

Outside the cafe, there was a short but steep path on the dirt and granite slopes for a more frontal and direct view of Laksforsen.

We definitely had to exercise caution both because the footing was slippery on the granite (especially when wet) and because the currents were strong on the Vefsna.

In any case, a visit here could be very short as we could have had our fill in 15 minutes.

That said, we also took our time here in each of our visits so it was more like a leisurely 30-60 minutes experience to take it all in.

Laksforsen_035_07092019 - Context of Julie going back up the steep trail from the base of Laksforsen
Context of Julie going back up the steep trail from the base of Laksforsen

Indeed, this place was really more of a rest stop to help break up the long driving along the E6 artery throughout Norway, especially in the long and narrow north.

The Most Dangerous Road in Norway?

On our very first visit to Laksforsen in early July 2005, I recalled that I had been fighting road fatigue due to the long driving distances.

On that trip, we did a brutally long drive that started in Trondheim and ended up in Mo i Rana.

This stretch of the E6 would require about 7 hours of driving without stops.

Since this waterfall seemed to be situated around the 2/3 to 3/4 point of the overall seven-hour drive, it seemed to be well-situated to act as a rest stop to recharge and stave off road fatigue for a little while longer.

Laksforsen_004_07052005 - Laksforsen seen directly from the banks of the Vefsna River on our first visit in early July 2005
Laksforsen seen directly from the banks of the Vefsna River on our first visit in early July 2005

Another thing about our first visit here in 2005 was that we had read a sign talking about how the E6 road could be the deadliest in Norway due to road fatigue.

When we came back 14 years later, we didn’t see that sign anymore.

And I wondered if it had anything to do with the fact that there was a lot of road construction going on in the E6 that seemed to aim to make the road safer.

We definitely witnessed a good deal of delays due to such road work on our 2019 visit, where it seemed like they were working to straighten out the E6 while increasing the speed limits.

Authorities

Laksforsen resides in the Granet Municipality near Trofors in Nordland County, Norway. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their website or Facebook page.

Laksforsen_040_07092019 - The Laksforsen Turistcafe and the front part of the car park as seen during our July 2019 visit. This photo and the next several shots came on this day
Laksforsen_004_07092019 - Our first look at Laksforsen for the first time in 14 years, but this time it was in the morning, where we got this rainbow in the blasting mist
Laksforsen_007_07092019 - Context of Julie checking out Laksforsen from the other side of the Laksforsen Turistcafe where all the fencing and the building itself shielded us from the mist
Laksforsen_009_07092019 - More direct and contextual look at Laksforsen. Notice the other side of the river, which seemed to be more bare than on our first visit 14 years before in 2005
Laksforsen_012_07092019 - The steep path leading down from the car park to the banks of the Vefsna River in front of Laksforsen
Laksforsen_014_07092019 - Our first look at Laksforsen for the first time in 14 years, but this time it was in the morning, where we got this rainbow in the blasting mist
Laksforsen_019_07092019 - Direct view of Laksforsen from its base, where it looked smaller from this vantage point
Laksforsen_023_07092019 - Focused on the other side of the river where there seemed to be a lot more construction work going on there than when we remembered it on our first visit back in 2005
Laksforsen_025_07092019 - Looking back up towards the car park from the base of Laksforsen
Laksforsen_028_07092019 - Looking up towards the Laksforsen Turistcafe from the bottom
Laksforsen_031_07092019 - Looking back down towards the slippery path leading to the banks of the Vefsna River
Laksforsen_037_07092019 - Context of the Laksforsen Turistcafe with the Laksforsen itself as well as the developments on the other side of the Vefsna as seen from the steep trail to the bottom
Laksforsen_042_07092019 - Looking more downstream where I was able to capture more of the bold arc of the morning rainbow in the Laksforsen mist
Laksforsen_013_07052005 - Contextual look at Laksforsen in July 2005 before descending to the Vefsna River. This photo and the rest of the photos in this gallery took place on this day
Laksforsen_012_07052005 - A guy makes the slippery descent to the base of Laksforsen during our first visit here back in early July 2005
Laksforsen_008_07052005 - Direct view of Laksforsen from the bottom of the descent in 2005
Laksforsen_006_jx_07052005 - Looking further downstream Laksforsen at other people who made the descent already
Laksforsen_007_jx_07052005 - Looking to the frothy base of Laksforsen during our first visit in 2005

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Although in our visits, we’ve either stayed in Trondheim to the south or Mo I Rana to the north prior to visiting Laksforsen, the nearest large town was actually Mosjøen (I think is pronounced “MOO-shuew-un”) so I’ll use that town as a reference point.

So from Mosjøen, the well-signed turnoff for Laksforsen was off the E6 about 28km to the south of town.

Laksforsen_063_07092019 - Lots of space for parking at the Laksforsen Turistcafe
Lots of space for parking at the Laksforsen Turistcafe

Then, after leaving the E6 to take this turnoff, we went another 800m to the Laksforsen Turistcafe, where there was a pretty large area for parking.

Going in the opposite direction, this turnoff from the E6 would be about 13km north of the E6 and Rv73 junction in the town of Trofors.

For some geographical context, Mosjøen was about 88km (under 90 minutes drive) south of Mo I Rana, 264km (about 4 hours drive) north of Fauske, 315km (over 4.5 hours drive) north of Bodø, 271km (about 4 hours drive) north of Steinkjer, 390km (about 5.5 hours drive) north of Trondheim, and 511km (about 8 hours drive with a ferry crossing) south of Narvik.

Sweep covering a more top down angle of the falls revealing a rainbow from the morning sun


Sweep from across the bottom of the waterfall

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Tagged with: grane, nordland, northern norway, mo I rana, mosjoen, norway, waterfall, salmon, e6, vefsna



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Johnny Cheng

About Johnny Cheng

Johnny Cheng is the founder of the World of Waterfalls and author of 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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