Winter Weekend – Rjukan & Gaustablikk

Last November, we went up into the mountains in Norway, pretty much due west of Oslo, and stayed in a hytte for a weekend with a view down to the valley containing the small village of Rjukan as well as over to a big mountain called Gaustablikk. Here are some images from the view from the hytte as well as from a jaunt around Rjukan on the day we left to go home again.

It was cold up on this mountain (more than 10C colder than down in the valley below) and we spent a lot of time inside, just enjoying the views and getting some hygge in the hytte. This is looking, early Saturday morning, down past the fog to the lights of Rjukan.

Still early, before the sun actually came up, here is a view over to the peak of Gaustablikk

Details of Gaustablikk

A closer look at Rjukan

The antenna up on Gaustablikk reminded me a bit of a syringe

Hairpin turn of the road coming down into Rjukan from the other side of the valley, with snowy mountains peaking up behind the pines as it gets a bit later Saturday morn

Finally, late in the morning, the first colorful rays of the sun start to paint the sky pinkish

This is looking west-northwest and the sunrise produced some stunning colors for a time

Looking south at Gaustablikk, you can see the pink light hitting one side of the mountain as the sun rose (the syringe-like antenna is colored almost a red from the early rays of the sun)

It was COLD, and when our bichon frise was put into a basket of “furs” in the hytte, he did not seem to mind

For environmental reasons, I never burn our fireplace at home in Oslo but since we were some of the only people up the mountain that weekend and because it was so cold, we had a bit of a roaring fire for much of the weekend

Half and hour or so later…..the dog was still in the basket (a new fav temporary spot)

The sun was out on Saturday so we headed out of the cabin to find the (unopened) ski center to suss out some coffee at a cafe

Walking down the road near the hytte — cold even with the sun shining brightly

The snow cannon were going full blast, trying to get ready for ski season

Back at the hytte, we lit the fire again (I got it out of my system)

Rjukan just after the sun set on Saturday late afternoon

On Sunday morning, no sunrise or blue sky — just clouds and fog as we packed up for our homeward journey

An old bank building down in the town of Rjukan

A bit of an Art Deco feel to the outside of a small cinema in Rjukan

Rjukan in mid-November meant some Xmas decor already along the shopping street

A clever use of an old barrel — Rjukan is known for the “Heroes of Telemark” who, during WWII, sabotaged the hydro plant nearby that was producing Deuterium as a byproduct, so the Germans who occupied the plant couldn’t develop nuclear weapons

A Xmas tree in the town square, as yet undecorated

The Såheim Hydro station in the distance, with a statue of Sam Eyde (who started Hydro) in the town square

Part of the main thoroughfare that runs through Rjukan, with the ski runs of the Gausta ski center in the distance

Wooden schoolhouse in Rjukan, built in 1922

Small, colorful houses along the river in Rjukan

On the other side of the river in Rjukan is the Såheim Hydro station

A figure walks by the Hydro station

A bridge, Birkelandsbrua, crosses the river in the RJukan valley

Finally, a cute and creative little “micro” library along the river in Rjukan

6 thoughts on “Winter Weekend – Rjukan & Gaustablikk

  1. What a pleasure it is to wander with you. The sunrise, the landscapes, the town and city details – and what a terrific use of an old stump! We have stumps and little roadside libraries here but no one has put the two together yet.


  2. I love the mini library in the tree stump! How creative and so typically Norwegian with a little gabled roof to protect it.
    Can I say that your photos of Gaustablikk and the velvety pastels at sunrise are stunning. I so enjoy seeing Norway (and Sweden) through your photos especially when they are as good as these. Brings back fond memories. I didn’t stay in a hytte but a hotel in that area in spring/summer and in this post you will see my photo of Gaustablikk.
    Rjukan is situated in such a steep and narrow valley, I posted about the mirrors placed on the top of the mountain to direct sun down into the valley for warmth and sunlight. Did you see them?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Nice image on the link you provided – and those flowers are great! Yes, that valley is amazingly steep. We did have a view of those mirrors from where we stayed, such a funny way to attempt to deal with shadow and darkness for much of the year. (That little mini library made some smile, for sure!) Thanks for your comment!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. When I researched the outcome of the mirrors it seems they are more of a tourist draw-card than significantly effective at dealing with the lack of sun in the valley with just a few locals sitting in the small patch of sunlight shining in the square in winter. It is a shame it didn’t work better. I suppose you would need a whole mountain of mirrors to make them effective. It is pretty cool that the mirrors can rotate though!

        Liked by 1 person

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