The eclogites in western Norway were formed when Precambrian basement rocks were squeezed and pressed down under great pressure deep under the Caledonian mountain chain. The process may well have triggered some of the deepest earthquakes the world has ever known. The clearest traces of this drama are found in and around Mt. Eldsfjellet, in peaceful Meland.
Otterstadstølen lies in an idyllic grassy plain surrounded by rich forest, but also with high mountains close by. The mountainsides are steep and typical of this part of the county. The same cannot be said about the forest. This spruce forest has been able to develop freely for hundreds of years. Otherwise in the county, only Voss has spruce forest.
Large quantities of nickel ore have been mined from Litlandsvatnet, between Lonevågen and Hosanger. The discovery was made in 1875. During the period of operation from 1882 to 1945, 4170 tonnes of pure nickel were extracted from 462 000 tonnes of ore, a large production by Norwegian standards.
On Vågenes, on one of the prominences out toward Eitrevågen, one finds garnets in anorthosite. The garnets are both older, and not least bigger, than average.
The mountains of western Norway are lovely to wander in. In Cambro-Silurian time it was the mountain itself that wandered. The mountain, or more correctly the bedrock, first moved eastward, then back a bit westward again. All this rocking back and forth in the mountains ended about 400 million years ago.
Mountain plants with their beautiful, colourful flowers are common in high altitude areas in Norway. On the coast there are not so many of them. But, here and there one nonetheless finds mountain plants, and this makes some coastal mountainsides a little bit different. Perhaps the growth on these mountainsides gives us a little glimpse of a distant past?
It is difficult to imagine that a plant can grow at the same place for many thousands of years: Climate and local environment change. Different species grow up and die out. Nonetheless, some plants get established, but don't manage to spread into new areas, because the climate is at the edge of what they can tolerate. Great fen-sedge is just such a plant.