Flatvad and the Cardinal Sin

The other day Sydney and I visited my Norwegian relatives on the ancestral farm in Flatvad, hiked to a gigantic waterfall, had coffee and norwegian waffles at a scenic lake. Today I also broke the cardinal sin of traveling: I left my camera at home.

This morning we awoke in Trondheim and quickly packed and prepared for our departure to Sunndalsøra. On the way out the hotel, we stopped for an unexpectedly impressive breakfast. We wandered into a Grade A quality Scandinavian breakfast – most notable for it’s impressive amount and variety of bread and toppings. There were dark loaves, light loaves, crusty and soft, croissants, danishes, oversized graham cracker looking breads, paper thin wafers and pancake breads.

If you could limit yourself to a couple of bread varieties there was an equally vast array of toppings. Everything from my personal Norwegian favorite Brunost, a cheese that both looks and tastes like carmel, to smoked salmon, liver mush, meatballs, different fish spreads, fruits, yogurts, etc.


After scarfing down more than we should’ve, we hurried off to the train station and caught a train to Oppdal where we caught a bus to Flatvad. After a three hour trip past idyllic countrysides, rolling hills, jagged cliffs,  snow covered peaks, and brightly colored farm houses, we found ourselves outside of the Flatvad farm.

We had a welcoming party waiting for us. Our relatives Rita, Lars, and Randi hurried out as we pulled up and gave us a warm welcome and present to congratulate us on our marriage. They ushered us inside and immediately sat down for a lunch very similar to our breakfast.

They quickly discussed what we would do that day: a trip to Åmotan waterfalls followed by a drive up to a old hunting lodge used by English aristocrats a century ago.


We hiked to the base of the water fall, hearing the thundering sound of water crashing to the ground the closer we came. A few hundred meters from the falls, Lars instructed us to put on our rain gear, as the falls threw water a long distance and the wind could carry it in unpredictable directions.

As we rounded the final bend of what had been a rather steep descent into the watery canyon, we caught full glimpse of the falls. From the top of a towering mountain came an endless surge of water charging off the mountain face and down hundreds of feet, smacking into rock faces along the way down before finally crashing into a pool at the canyon floor. The water hit with such impact that misty vapor rose three stories from the place of impact and blew in our faces as we got closer to the falls.

A few meters from the point where the falls fed into the water was a another impressive natural wonder. Five rivers came together at the site of the falls, and altogether comprised a confluence of six rivers at the base of Åmotan. The water level was very high and extremely turbulent. The water churned an almost fluorescent blue and white only a few feet below where we stood. We stood and watched the falls for a few minutes in amazement.

On the hike back from the waterfall, we had to pass over a narrow bridge that hung only a few precarious feet over the water – the same churning blue and white. As we walked carefully, we focused our eyes on the end of the bridge to avoid look at the water below.

After a hike back to the car, we hopped in and kept riding around the norse countryside. We stopped in an old english vacation spot for norse waffles with black currant jelly and clotted cream along with a beer. It held us over for the afternoon.

After returning to Flatvad, we had dinner with the family. We had a meatball stew with the variety of norwegian breads for dinner with Knut and Rita. After a chat, we retired for the evening.

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