Sunday, 3 April 2016

Rondane National Park

Rondane was the first National Park in Norway, opened in 1962. Today, it covers an area of almost 1000 square km in the counties of Oppland and Hedmark. Some of the best ways to experience the area are by hiking, biking, horse riding, rafting and river kayaking. 

Rondane National Park

Rondane's dry climate and unfertile soils make this region popular among hikers despite the fact that stones and embankments make some parts difficult to pass. There you will find a developed network of tourist cabins and marked trails. The trails between Bjørnhollia, Rondvassbu and Dørålseter are amongst the most commonly used routes. 

Hunting for wild reindeer take place in Rondane every autumn. Hunting woodland birds and hares is also permitted in the national park. Many of the mountain lakes are stocked with perch, trout and char. If you have a valid fishing license, you can try your luck at fishing. 


Rondane contains ten peaks above 2000 meters, with the highest being Rondeslottet at an altitude of 2178 meters. The mountains in the central part of the park keep the traits of the glacial epoch. Here, the glacier left deep valleys and glacier rivers carved curved gorges. 

Rondane, Norway

At Skranglehaugan, south of Dørålseter, there is a wonderful landscape of gravel ridges and huge depressions. These depressions are called dead ice holes, or kettle holes, and they were created when blocks of ice became buried in amongst the gravel and stones. When these ice blocks finally melted, they left depressions in the landscape that resemble craters. 


A dry climate and poor soil with minor nourishment means that the vegetation in Rondane is sparse. Most of the national park is made up of bare rock, where only the most bold plants thrive, like lichen and heather. Lichen and reindeer moss color the territory in yellow and white, and are a vital source of nutrition for reindeer in winter. One of few that can survive in the region is a glacier buttercup. You can find it on the height of more than 1700 meters. 

Autumn, Rondane

In the valleys, the vegetation is more varied. You can find birch or even pine forests and territories covered with fir-wood. In the south there are mountain moorland and nutrient-rich bogs. 


In the territory of the Rondane National Park, you can see all typical for the region biological species, but it is especially famous as an areal for the wild reindeer. These reindeer are the remnants of a larger population that once followed migration routes running from Rondane, over Dovre to Sunndalsfjella. Roads, railways, power lines, and human traffic have cut off these migration routes, and reduced the available habitat. The wild reindeer now live as smaller populations in the remaining fragments of their previous habitats and with little contact between the groups. 

The original wild reindeer

The reindeer are very sensitive. If you see a grazing flock, approach them on the leeward or stand still until they leave the place. 


Rondane, camping

  • You may go wherever you like, on foot or ski, but anything with an engine is prohibited. 
  • You can stop wherever you like and pitch a tent. Always tidy up afterwards and do not leave litter.
  • You can light a fire, but remember the general ban on lighting fires in forests from 15 April to 15 September. Be considerate when collecting firewood. 
  • You can pick berries, mushrooms and common plants for your own use. Be considerate of cultural relics, vegetation and fauna. Be extra careful during the breeding and nesting season. 
  • Make use of the hunting and fishing opportunities. Remember a hunting/fishing license. Never use live fish as bait, or transfer live fish from one watercourse to another. 
  • You can take your dog with you, but remember to keep it on a lead from 1 March to 20 August. 

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