Just 180 km from Oslo, 440 km from Gothenburg. Here in the heart of Telemark you will find Gausta at 1000 m altitude above Rjukan and Vestfjorddalen. Even higher the majestic Gaustatoppen peaks 1883 m above sea. Perhaps Norway’s most iconic mountain. 365 days a year Gausta offers world class experiences and activities – alpine skiing, trekking, biking, cross-country skiing and ice-climbing.
Already down in the valley, Vestfjorddalen, you will sense what separates Gausta from other Scandinavian mountain destinations. It’s simply – more mountain. Because after the meandering climb up the roads of Gausta – the fjell Gaustatoppen just keeps rising – another 900 meters.
On the top of Gaustatoppen you can see ⅙ of Norway on a clear day – a spectacular view. Despite its height the summit is extremely accessible. You simply take the train. Gaustabanen, is an underground train inside the mountain taking you up to the peak in 15 minutes. But you can also ski or walk your way up. Every year approximately 100 000 people visit the top.
The peak is frequented by trekkers in the summertime and off-piste skiers in the winter. The vast difference in altitude between Gaustatoppen and Rjukan results in an enormous potential for Gausta as a ski resort.
In the future there will be opportunities to ski with a full vertical drop of 1650 meters. And that future might not be far away. Already 1939 a downhill track was cut out to host the Alpine World Championships. However, the World War II put everything on hold and the forests took the slope back. Now, the possibilities of opening the slope again is being discussed.
Gausta as an area stretches from Vatnedalen in the south-east, via Gaustablikk, Brendstaul, Hovdestaul up to Gaustabanen and Gaustatoppen. Included in the vision for the destination and the ski centre is a closer connection to Rjukan and Vestfjorddalen below.
The legendary Norwegian county Telemark is the birthplace of alpine skiing. The craftsmen here improved both the skis and binding-constructions. The pioneer Sondre Norheim stunned the crowds in Oslo (then Christiania) with his skills as he pioneered both the slalom-turn and the Telemark-turn at the first national skiing competition 1868. The word slalom is actually composed from two dialectal words from Telemark.
Gausta in Telemark is closer than you might think. Just 180 km west of Oslo, 440 km from Gothenburg await mountains of heights that you are more likely to find in the Alps.
Gausta is always in season. It is only the adventures and activities that keep changing. Skiing season starts in November and goes into May. During summer and until the first snow falls in the autumn amazing trekking can be experienced. But there is more! Don’t miss out the chance to experience the peace, the bird song and the snowmelt in May. See Vestfjorddalens 200 waterfall awake and throw themselves down the steep mountain sides down to Rjukan.
In the wintertime Gausta offers varied skiing for the whole family, exciting and beautiful randonée-tours and advanced off-piste skiing. Here the wide open plains of endless white is all within reach for tour-skiing where you find your own trail. And if you want to race on cross-country skis Gausta offer excellent preparated tracks. And don’t forget ice-climbing. As the 200 waterfalls freeze Rjukan becomes a centre for ice-climbing attracting adventurers from all over Europe.
In the summertime, you are free to roam the mountain terrain – trekking and camping. And you can also go canoeing, mountain biking, hunt or go fishing. Right next to Gausta you will find the gate to Hardangervidda national park – Europe’s largest mountain plateau.