Alta Canyon is an important landmark for Alta and Finnmark. Northern Europe’s largest canyon can be experienced both on foot, by bike and or from the river boat.
Sautso is the Sami name for Alta Canyon. Along the legendary Alta River, the river gorge extends over 400 meters up from the river bed. The canyon starts just below the Alta power station, where the Kautokeino river meets the Alta river, and extends ten kilometers down towards the Altafjord.
Several roads to the Canyon
There are several ways to experience Alta Canyon. In summer when the water level is high enough you can take the trip from Sorrisniva in a traditional river boat. Along the way, you will hear stories about the world’s best salmon river, the Alta River, and the famous salmon.
Alta Canyon is a beautiful hiking destination with fantastic views of the Alta River, with two starting points, one from each side of the river.
Starting from Bæskades, the trip is a great hike through unique plateau landscapes and nature. Here the reindeer have grazed since time immemorial, and several animals such as bears, wolves, lynx and wolverines have roamed past. This is a trip of 13 km that goes in relatively flat landscape, except for the last part down to the viewpoint itself. At the viewpoint you can feel the fear of heights and the suction of the stomach, knowing that it is a hundred meters down to the river.
From the other side, more specifically Tutteberget in Stilla, there is no marked trail, so here we recommend that you or someone in turn are good at maps and compasses. We can also recommend contacting Altaturer with a request for a guided tour here. From this side of Alta Canyon you can look down on Sautsogården.
If you want to experience Alta Canyon from the bike seat, there are good opportunities for that. Æventyr offers bicycle rides on electric bicycles inland from Stilla, and also bicycle rental. Note: the barrier in Stilla is closed for periods due to reindeer herding.
Many may also be interested in Alta hydropower station. The power station was one of the most controversial hydropower developments that has taken place in Norway. Together with Boreal Adventure you can visit the Altadammen in Sautso. On the way here you can see glimpses of Alta Canyon.