The route in brief
Start: The highest point between Rjukan and Tuddal
Length: 3,2 km return
Time: 2 h return
Vertical rise: 184 m (approx. 1,249-1,409 metres above sea level)
About Lille Gaustakne
Store Gaustakne and Lille Gaustakne, literally ‘Big Gaustakne’ and ‘Little Gaustakne’, are two mountain peaks south of Gaustatoppen. They are ideal for hiking and easy to reach from the road that runs between Rjukan and Tuddal.
Go to Flistjønnskaret, the highest point on the road between Rjukan and Tuddal (near Stavsro). Around 50 metres further down on the left side towards Tuddal you’ll find a trail leading up to Lille Gaustakne.
Start the hike and turn right when the trail meets another trail. Continue right and follow the trail all the way to the top, 1,447 metres above the sea. From here there are fine views of the surrounding area, with the stately Gaustatoppen standing proud in the background.
The best time to hike to Lille Gaustakne is in the summer and early autumn, from the beginning of June until mid-October. The hike does include an ascent but is suitable for most people, including families with children.
The route is in a high-altitude mountain environment with some rocky parts, known as ‘talus’ or ‘talus cones’. Sturdy boots or hiking shoes with proper ankle support are recommended.
Hikes on Gausta
Skipsfjell is the name of the mountain located in the middle of Gausta. It has one of the best viewpoints in the area. From the top at 1088 metres above sea level, you can enjoy magnificent views of the entire Gausta area, including Gaustatoppen, Kvitåvatn and Rjukan. Hiking up here (or around the whole mountain) is suitable for all ages and takes a few hours.
Ørnenipa is a popular mountain in Vatnedalen, located in the northeastern part of Gausta. The peak is located at 1315 metres above sea level and offers good hiking and beautiful views of Gaustatoppen the Gausta area. The popular trail from Vatnedalen takes about 4 hours (round trip).
This moderate hike to Toreskyrkja starts at Lake Heddersvatn next to Stavsro. The hike is 3,6 km and approximately 1–1,5 hours long (one way).
This challenging hike takes you from Vatnedalen to Toreskyrkja at 1,371 metres above sea level. At the summit you can enjoy spectacular views of Gaustatoppen, Tuddal, and the mountains in Telemark.
On the mountain crest south of Gaustatoppen you'll find Lille Gaustakne. The hike takes around 2 hours return, and from the summit at 1.443 metres you can enjoy magnificent views.
Dress appropriately and follow the Norwegian mountain safety code, which is a set of rules and advice that you should always have with you when you go out in the mountains. For example, make sure that you always plan your hike carefully and be prepared for bad weather and the cold, even on short hikes.