The little cowshed which lies on the fence at Kolåseidet, constructed in connection with the stone fence, has put its mark on the cultural landscape. On the border between the home fields and the forest, the cowshed is the very symbol of a simple resource management - the division between the cropland and the grazing grounds. And the way it was built has its roots far back in time.
"I am going to prove to you that I am right". That is what the idealist and county doctor Christian Heitmann is supposed to have said in the early 1890s. He sat together with the parish priest, Kullmann, at Heitmann's home in Stord and discussed whether the islands in western Norway could have been forested or not. The priest thought that the area was too barren and weather-beaten for forest to have been able to grow so far out in the sea. But, Heitmann was sure he was right. He challenged the scepticism and set off to work.
"...it would not be of any particular economical interest to support the planting of forest as the forest that can be cultivated will leave much to be desired in the way of growth potential." These words stem from the economist that at the end of the 1800s was sent to Stend to inspect the planned reforestation in person. The pioneer G.A.Wilson put the economist's words to shame. The spruce that was planted in Rådalen in the period 1867–1869 became a landmark. No other stand of forest in Scandinavia can boast more trees per unit area.