Category: News

New party venue

New party venue

This year we´ve moved up from bus garage to bank for all the social happenings during the festival. It´s definately a step up from the dusty bus shelter, so we hope you´ll enjoy it. It will be open for you to use during the daytime too. There´s shower and toilet, couches and plenty of sockets where you can charge your thingamabobs. Also the big grill will be for you to use the nights we´re not serving food.

We´ll show the semifinals for the world cup in her on tuesday and wednesday at 20:00

N.B. You can not use any open fire in the camping field, as this years drought makes it very dangerous. Basically it´s comparable to smoking a cigarette in a pile of gunpowder. And you wouldn´t do that would you?

2017 Event Round Up

2017 Event Round Up


Rafting Race
Rafting Canyon shot

rafting close shot

See more Raft Race Images by Cassidy Berg.

Griningsdal Rapid Race
Griningdals blue kayak

With an early spring melting a lot of the snow and a dry summer, we had little flows on Ula last summer. So we looked for a new venue during the low water summer. Martin Vollen, a Sjoa local recommended we checked out the Griningsdal Rapid high up on the Sjoa River close to Gjendesheim. This is a series of slides and drops contained and compressed within a low canyon walls, stacked up on each other. As a new race venue the line of competitors was a little thin at the start eddy. After several had ran good lines down the rapids, a steady stream of racers descended the Griningsdal Rapids. Special mentions go to Viktor Legat from Zet Kayaks, managing to pull off an unintentional barrel roll of the main drop, which please the crowd. After a tight race, Julian Stocker from Voss and Capucine Thomas-Lépine from Trondheim took away the honours.

Grainingsdal yellow kayak

Sweet BoaterX Rumble
Louise Capel was the Race Director for the annual Sweet Rumble. She managed to pull the hoard together once again in the Åmot Canyon on the Sjoa River. The rounds come thick and fast in the Rumble, with tight racing in the entry rapid and through the corridor. Positions often change and change again. The final rapid provides a tight finish eddy and is occasionally missed, proving a regular upset to leading paddlers. The crowd loves this late Saturday afternoon race, watching from above along the canyon walls.

Surprising herself and delighting the crowd Anne-marthe Kommedahl won her first Sweet Rumble, and Viktor Legat made up for his Griningsdal Rapid Race action, sweeping the win for another Czech winner.

Palm Throwbag Olympics
As we wind up for the party on Saturday night, we have a final challenge after the grill flames die down. The Palm Throwbag Olympics is a series of elements to overcome whilst competing against others in a rush to finish first. Needless to say that for the local raft guides, this competition is a little more competitive, and prior practise has certainly been undertaken by those keenest to win. Still if you watch the whole show, it’s a sublime combination of skills with precision, and haphazard throwing attempts. Check out the video below.

All in all another summer in Norway past by, with the Sjoa River Festival another grant highlight. We go again 10/15 July 2018. Hope to see you there.

Ula Slides Race 2017 Update

Ula Slides Race 2017 Update

#ninjasave #sjoa #sjodalen

A post shared by Martin Vollen (@boatermart) on

Due to the current water conditions, we have going to move the Ula Slides Race to the Upper Sjoa River. On a rapid known locally as Griningdals Rapid.

Race Info:
The race format will be the same, a single run for all, and the top 10 fastest will go for a second run. The fastest combined total of the runs will be the winner. We’ll have a race briefing for 1600 on Friday afternoon at the start of the race course.

See footage of the top slide from Martin Vollen and the Second Slide:

This part of the Upper Sjoa flows out of Nedre Sjodalsvatnet with the Griningdalen Rapid soon after the month of the river. The location is Gamle Griningdalsvegen, 2683 Tessanden from Google Maps.

The Gamle Griningdalsvegen road that approaches the bridge below the Griningdals Rapid is a single track forest trail. Parking is VERY LIMITED. Therefore PLEASE PARK ON THE NORTHERN LAKE SHORE OF NEDRE SJODALSVATNET and paddle 200m of Sjoa to the top of the Race Course down the Sjoa. See the turn off to the lake shore from Highway 51.

Safety Crew & Race Volunteers:
The Griningdals Rapid is a new race course, and as such, we’ll have a heightened level of security on the race section. As such we would like to request 6 paddler’s act as safety crew. In addition, we’ll be looking for help from 2-3 people with the race organisation, at the start and finish for both Friday and Saturday evening. Please PM Simon Westgarth.

Sweet Rumble Ranking:
The standing from this time trail race is used for the Sweet Rumble BoaterX on Åmot Saturday late afternoon. If you are unwilling to race on the Griningdals Rapid, we’ll plan for wildcard places and/or pre-heats for late entries. Be at the start eddy for 16:30 on Saturday.

Sjoa River Festival 2016 – Short Report

Sjoa River Festival 2016 – Short Report

(Lost in the ether of our downed served a re-post from the Sjoa River Festival 2016, so get into the spirit and pre-register.)

At the height of this long warm summer, the Sjoa River Festival now in its 20th year attracts paddlers from across Norway, and Europe beyond. With much of the winter’s snow long melted, low water conditions meant paddlers all week could enjoy runs of Finna near Vågå, in the Åseng canyon on Sjoa as well as final runs on the Lågen, currently and very regrettably being dammed at Rosten. The Sjoa River Festival is very much a gathering event, whereby the official programme limited to evening entertainment and a few key races hosted by Strie Strømmer and Gene17Kayaking, all set near or at Bjølstadmo in Heidal.

This year’s low water meant the traditional Ula Extreme race was moved to Åmot Canyon with a challenging course set by Jakub Sedivy, a perennial Sjoa summer visitor. With a hard course set out, paddlers laboured to hit all the moves without incurring penalties, with a third of the field missing the finish gate. The top girls were well within 10% of the fastest men’s finishing time, which goes to show tactics matter offer strength and power even on such pushy whitewater found on the Sjoa’s Åmot Canyon. Winner of the recent Ekstremsportveko, French man Eric Deguil stormed the field to win with an impressive time, whilst Czech girl, Pavlina Zasterova also had a clean run to lead the ladies.

On Saturday’s Sweet Rumble BoaterX event also on the Åmot Canyon, wave after wave of men’s heats and finals cut the field of competitors down to a final of 4 men, 3 were Czech and another French man. The final was a big battle, with the leader swapping out a few times, and a lot of competition for position in the first rapids, with all the paddlers taking the faster and more riskier line on the last rapid. Whilst Ondřej Tunka very kept the lead into the final eddy, the battle on his tail between the others made for fine entertainment for the watching crowds. In the ladies final, Pavlina opened up a good lead in the corridor rapid after several competitors were knocked offline in the entry rapid. All the girls went for the safer just tighter middle line on the last rapid, with Pavlina being the only competitor to make the final gate. All the other girls in amongst the fight, block each other’s lines and they were swept down river…. For our FULL results.

All in all another vintage festival, with great the parties, lots more the campfire stories and many fine lines down great rapids. As ever we’re back again in 2017, Week 28 as usual.

Pre-Registration Now Open

Pre-Registration Now Open

Don’t miss out on a bargain.

Sjoa River Festival 2017 discounted pre-registration available through Strie Strømmer for NOK 450 until 9th July 2017.

Buy it HERE, and please REMEMBER to also submit a completed our registration form too.

We have had to recover lots of files from the old site and build a new site for 2017. The web pages have recently been populated with all the normal stuff with programme details. We have renamed the Ula Race to reflect the growing accessibility of more paddlers enjoying the sprint on the Ula Slides.

Plus currently, we are looking for help organizing our Wednesday Raft Race. Strie Strømmer has contacted the local raft companies and river guides hoping someone will pick up the mantle of Ine & Rob’s highly successful run as race organisers.

More updates to come soon.

New Website

New Website

Our old website database had an unfortunate incident. Welcome to the new site!

Sjoa River Festival has it´s 21st anniversary this year, and we hope ya´all find the time to come.

Pre-registration will be available soon.