Sabotørfossen in Rjukan in Norway is one heck of an ice climbing classic in the area known as Upper Gorge!

This is a stunning 150 meters long WI5 ice climbing multi-pitch that includes an easy slab/ramp, an amazing ice chimney and a beautiful ice face that forms a narrow steep drip at the top.

Watch this ice climbing video to gain essential beta on how to ice climb Sabotørfossen in Rjukan in Norway. To ice climb Sabotørfossen you would need at least 8 ice screws of various lengths (e.g. Black Diamond Express 13 cm, 16 cm and 19 cm) and at least the same amount of alpine quick draws (two carabiners with an extendable sling).

The belay at the final pitch will be from a couple of trees, so you also need to bring some slings and carabiners to build an anchor from that. And based on the conditions you could bring a set of nuts (e.g. Black Diamond Stopper Nuts) for the chimney to take advantage of the surrounding rock. And speaking of gear remember to watch the video about how to choose the right ice axe or ice tool.

► How to choose the RIGHT ice axe or ice tool –

Sabotørfossen has some history behind it. The name can be translated from Norwegian into English to “The Saboteur Waterfall” and derives from a World War II legend. The legend states that a Norwegian commando team along side British troops ice climbed the waterfalls of the Upper Gorge after following the Sabotørstien (The Saboteur Trail). They did not necessarily climb the Sabotørfossen itself as there are some debate about which specific route they took. Anyway, the Norwegian commando troops silently made their way to the Vemork hydroelectric plant, where the Nazi was experimenting with heavy water for nuclear weapons of mass destruction. The Norwegian commandos successfully sabotaged the experiments by bombing the Vemork hydroelectric plant, and thereby disrupting the Navi progress of nuclear weapons. There has actually been made a Hollywood feature about this legend called “The Heroes of Telemark”. So you could be your own hero of Telemark by ice climbing the Sabotørfossen!

Sabotørfossen could however easily have been the route that the Norwegian commandos raided the Vemork hydroelectric plant through as you are hidden from the surroundings in the Rjukan Upper Gorge, when climbing inside the stunning ice chimney on the second pitch.

You approach Sabotørfossen from Rjukan by driving up to the Vemork bridge near the Vemork hydroelectric plant in the Upper Gorge. From here you hike down to the river for a couple of hundred meters until you come to the base of the climb at the left. It is pretty straightforward as Sabotørfossen starts with a broad, wide ice slab/ramp for about 40 meters. When you are done ice climbing Sabotørfossen you should hike back toward the Vemork hydroelectric plant.

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