LiquidLore - Norway



This information was gathered on a kayak holiday in 2012 and it was current at that time. Information may now be inaccurate.

When thinking of whitewater kayaking in Norway, the small town of Voss quickly emerges as one of its epicenters of whitewater rivers. In this hilly region with a seemingly endless list of quality whitewater, a small creek called the Teigdalselva just west of Voss is oft spoken of as one of the highest quality class V rivers in the whole of Norway. Truth be told, the Teigdalselva sits in the ranks of one of the best class V day runs of its sort in the world. With easy access and portaging, beautiful surroundings and a truly astounding stack of clean, big waterfalls and rapids, how could it not? It's hard to articulate just how good this run is.

Typical of Norway, access is easy on paved roads. The river is located west of Voss. The turn up the Teigdal valley is about half way between Voss and Dale. Just pick up a map, or the Norway guidebook, and it will be easy to find. The take out is on the side of the road at the double drop and the put is in 4 or 5 km upstream following the river right road. There is no gauge on the Teigdal, but rivers in the area need to be high for it to be running (snowmelt + rain in early summer, or heavy rain). Flows change quickly.

Out of the gate at the start, the Teigdalselva is manky and steep. This doesn't last long, and after a few hundred meters you'll reach the first waterfall with a funny twisting entrance. The next few kilometers alternate without pause between big waterfalls/slides and stout class V rapids. It's remarkable how stacked yet how completely runnable this river is. It's also remarkable (and this is true for much of Norway) how easy it is to get out and scout/portage - for the most part it means walking through gently sloping fields. It would certainly be another river altogether were it jammed down in the bottom of a box canyon!

The upper portion of the river is easy to pick apart. After the 20 foot waterfall with a hole at the lip, run a few more rapids and be ready to portage around a gnarly waterfall. Another section of rapids below here again requires care as you approach the lip of the Notter Drop, another waterfall that most will portage. The river mellows out for a short time before you reach another narrowing, a few drops and the lead up to the iconic double drop. The double drop (maybe 60 feet in total) really needs no introduction, and it's the perfect ending to this amazing river. Like the whole run, the double drop is huge but really good to go. If you're in Norway and have a thirst for running class V, the Teigdalselva is one of the rivers for you.

Teigdalselva A beautiful view looking out over the Teigdal valley.
Teigdalselva The first tricky waterfall, just below the put in.
Teigdalselva Immediatley after the first few big drops - there are no breaks on the Teigdal.
Teigdalselva A fast slide that deals out big hits at the bottom.
Teigdalselva Another tricky waterfall...
Teigdalselva ...with a long, involved lead in.
Teigdalselva The double drop at the take out. There are many rapids that we haven't shown in photos between this one and the photo above!
Teigdalselva Just a classic way to end one of Norway's classic class V rivers.

Updated Dec 15, 2013