Heillstuguvatnet.
Heillstuguvatnet. Photo: Jarle Wæhler, Statens vegvesen

Along stone walls and guard stones

The old roadway between east and west is a museum experience in itself. It is a historic alternative to the new trunk road across Strynefjellet Mountain.

Built by manual labour towards the end of the 19th century, this road conveys a historical narrative. The road is an attraction in itself and a testimony to a masterpiece of engineering design from a bygone time. 

Old hand-built walls of meticulously cut stones and long rows of guard stones characterise the stretch of road across the mountain. The scenic route between Eastern and Western Norway was listed as a protected road in 2009.

Travel information

Length
27 km
MASL
465 - 1139

Norwegian Scenic Route Gamle Strynefjellsvegen runs from Grotli to Videsæter.  The small village of Hjelle also plays an important role in the tourist route since the old road starts at the jetty in Hjelle.

For cyclists: Gamle Strynefjellsvegen is a relatively short route, and we recommend that you start at Grotli.  Parts of the route run on gravel roads.

Traffic and road information

Telephone +47 815 48 991

Traffic alerts in map (Norwegian only)

GPS, Grotli:
62.006193, 7.630928
GPS, Videsæter:
61.937043, 7.264409

THE ROAD IS CLOSED! The route is closed during the winter season. It is normally closed in October and reopens in June.

In places this stretch is narrow with a number of bends and there are restrictions. Vehicles that are more than 8 metres long and have an axle load of more than 8 tonnes will be banned from driving on Gamle Strynefjellsvegen from Grotli to the Sogn og Fjordane county boundary.

Experiences

When the villages along western fiords began to experience tourism in the last few decades of the 19th century, the idea emerged of a drivable road across Strynefjellet. In 1881, it was therefore decided to build a road. People from Skjåk and surrounding villages, Swedish navvies and construction workers from Gudbrandsdalen worked ten-hour days to complete the road in the period 1889-1894.

Gamle Strynefjellsvegen is a chaussee, typical of its time, with hand-built stonemasonry walls and long rows of guard stones along the road. These formed a roadside guardrail at a time when horses and wagons were more common than cars.

The landscape around the road provides a variety of different hiking options. Walk along the many mountain lakes, follow an old travel route, or let your hike take you to one of the mountain farms in the area. From Gamle Strynefjellsvegen there is a nice drive down to Hjelle, the idyllic village on Lake Strynsvatnet in the valley of Hjelledalen.

Useful links

The 18 Norwegian Scenic Routes

Norwegian Scenic Routes are roads that run through unique Norwegian nature. Along the roads you will find artworks, viewpoints and rest areas with innovative architecture in beautiful landscapes.

View all Scenic Routes