Name of Waterfall

Nordre Mardalsfossen


Nordre Mardalsfossen is found in Eikesdalen in the municipality of Nesset. From the junction of Routes 62 and 660 in the town of Nesset, follow Route 660 south for almost 17km to the small town of Eresfjord and turn left onto Route 192, which is signed for Eikesdalen and Mardalsfossen. Follow Route 192 for 6km then bear left onto Route 191, still watching for signs for Eikesdalen and Mardalsfossen. Follow Route 191 along the shore of Eikesdalsvatnet for another 21km and turn right onto a gravel road (for which there is a toll of NOK 30) just after crossing the river, again following signs pointing to Mardalsfossen. Follow the gravel road for another 2.5km to the large parking area about 130 meters beyond the bridge over the Mardøla. From the parking area, simply follow the signed trail which leads to the base of Mardalsfossen in about 2 kilometers. Nordre Mardalsfossen is visible from the trail in the same area that Mardalsfossen is visible.The lesser of the two major waterfalls along the branches of the Mardøla River, Nordre Mardalsfossen is a long horsetailing fall found in the same valley which harbors the more impressive and globally recognized Mardalsfossen, and as a result Nordre Mardalsfossen suffers from a significant amount of overshadowing. Based on one meter topographic data the falls have a total drop of 442 meters (1,450 feet), broken up into four distinct steps. The three uppermost drops are smaller back-to-back cascades which drop a total of about 87 meters collectively and can't be seen from the valley below. The main tier then veils and slides an additional 355 meters (1,165 feet) down a long pitch of bedrock which features angular fractures which allows the falls to exhibit an interesting slide-plunge-slide dynamic.
Like neighboring Mardalsfossen, the Ytste Mardøla has been regulated in the Grytten hydro system since 1977 and is reduced for the majority of the year. However it appears that for any of several possible factors, this fork of the river may not be affected by the diversion to the extent as the Inste Mardøla. One factor is certainly the larger drainage area of the Ytste Mardøla, which covers approximately 48 square kilometers and feature several small glaciers and numerous lakes. It may also be that water diverted from the Inste Mardøla at peak runoff might overwhelm the diversion system and permit more of the Ytste Mardøla to flow down its natural course instead of into the diversion tunnels – we believe this to be the case simply because when we surveyed the falls in June 2011 it was flowing heavily while Mardalsfossen was greatly reduced in volume (the seasonal flow had not yet been "turned on"). Whatever the cause, it appears the falls flow more consistently than Mardalsfossen does even though the river is similarly regulated. Sources have told us that like Mardalsfossen there is a minimum required release of water between June 20 and August 20, but it's not clear how much that release may be.Despite its proximity to the more famous Mardalsfossen this waterfall doesn't seem to have ever been given a commonly accepted name. We've seen it listed as Mardølafossen in the past, but since it's only on a branch of the river and not the main stem this is not a terribly accurate or appropriate naming scheme. The river's proper name is Ytste Mardøla, but the falls seem to be referred to about equally as Nordre (Northern) Mardalsfossen or Ytste (Outer) Mardalsfossen.

Other Names

['Mardølafossen', 'Ytste Mardalsfossen']



IWC Rating (International Waterfall Classification)


Total Height (ft)


Tallest Drop


Number of Drops


Average Width


Maximum Width


Average High Volume (Cubic ft per second)

75 cfs (4 months)

Average Low Volume (Cubic ft per second)

5 cfs (8 months)


65 degrees

Run (ft)


Watershed or Feeder Stream

Ytste Mardøla