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Park and huck river, Central Norway, Rondane National Park, River Ula
What's it like
In the heart of Norway lies a whitewater gem. Situated in Norway's oldest national park, Rondane, is the spectacular Stor Ula. Stor Ula is famous for two parts. The slides (where each year at the Sjoa kayak festival an extreme race is held) and Ula Falls.
Ula falls is often described as Europe's Dry Meadow Creek. The description below is of Ula Falls and is to be used as a guide only. The falls can be extremely dangerous. Please use your own judgment, experience and common sense when running these drops.
Ula Falls is a beautiful series of pool drop waterfalls. The first three of which are the recommended drops.
The first drop is a clean 7 meter verticle plunge that makes a sweet boof. The pool below has a large eddy on river left, so you can re-gather your thoughts before the second fall. In high water it is possible to get pushed into the wall on river right so be aware!
First drop run by Darryl Sergusen.
The second drop is 4 meters high and quite straight forward. A tongue shows the line just left of center. Again this leads into a nice deep plunge pool so melt downs are not a problem.
The third drop is the trickiest one and is 9 meters high. Again a tongue points the way. A large rock hanging out from the wall on river right looks like it should be avoided. Do not let this put you off, in fact it is a good idea to paddle towards this as an undercut in the pool at the bottom on river left should be well avoided! This plunge pool is where you need to take out, so make sure you make the eddy after the undercut on river left and have someone covering.
Third drop run by Darryl Sergusen.
The 4th drop is not normally run. This is a 16M fall and was first run in 1997 by Eric Martinsen. It has since been run a handful of times and has seen equal amounts of good and bad results, so be very careful if you consider this drop.
Mark Burton, 3rd descent, 1999.
How to get there
When driving from Sjoa to Otta on the E6, a road on the right winds up the valley, just before the large petrol station at Otta. As you breach the tree line you will come across a road toll. Go through this to get to the slides. If you just want to run the drops bear left here and follow the road to the barrier.
As everywhere in Norway the locals are very nice and helpful. This is partly due to the good reputation kayakers have built up over the years. Please respect others and help maintain this credit.
Mark Burton, Adrenal
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