The Info List - Skjåk

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is a municipality in Oppland
county, Norway. It is part of the traditional region of Gudbrandsdalen. The administrative centre of the municipality is the village of Bismo. The municipality of Skjåk
was created when it was separated from Lom to become a municipality of its own in 1866. The local newspaper is named Fjuken.


1 General information

1.1 Name 1.2 Coat-of-arms

2 History 3 Geography 4 Climate 5 Notable residents 6 References 7 External links

General information[edit] Name[edit] The municipality (originally the parish) is named after the old Skjåk farm (Old Norse: Skeiðakr), since the first church was built here. The first element is skeið which means "a running track for horse racing" and the last element is akr which means "field" or "acre".[2] Prior to 1889, the name was written "Skiaker", then from 1889-1910 it was spelled "Skiaaker", from 1911-1920 it was "Skjaak", and since 1921 it has been written in its present form, "Skjåk". Coat-of-arms[edit] The coat-of-arms is from modern times. They were granted on 31 March 1989. It shows four silver-colored acanthus leaves on a blue background. This was picked to symbolize growth and strength. These symbols are found in many historic artifacts from around the area.[3]

Number of minorities (1st and 2nd generation) in Skjåk
by country of origin in 2017[4]

Ancestry Number

 Eritrea 40

 Poland 26

 Russia 8

History[edit] Skjåk
has historical roots back to the Viking Age
Viking Age
and has a rich cultural heritage. An ancient route of travel between east and west went from Skjåk
up through the Raudal valley and down through the Sunndal
valley to Stryn
on an arm of the Nordfjord. For example, in 1197, according to King Sverre's saga, Bishop Nikolaus is reported to have sent a group of baglers from Oppdal over the mountains to Stryn on Nordfjord, via Raudal. Geography[edit]

Map of Skjåk

View of the "sunny side" of Skjåk

is the westernmost municipality in the valley of Ottadalen. It is bordered to the north by the municipality of Norddal, Rauma, and Lesja, in the east and southeast by Lom, in the south by Luster and in the west by Stryn
and Stranda. The municipality lies along the Otta river between the mountainous areas of Breheim and Reinheim. Bismo is the modern population center and the location of the majority of industry and shopping as well as the municipal administration. The community is at the meeting point between Gudbrandsdalen
and the mountains between the eastern parts of Norway
and the west coast. The municipality lies on a historically significant traffic artery between Stryn
and Nordfjord, Geiranger, and Sunnmøre
and the more easterly Ottadal municipalities of Lom and Vågå. Of the total area, 19 square kilometres (7.3 sq mi) is used for agriculture; 129 square kilometres (50 sq mi) for forestry; 75 square kilometres (29 sq mi) is covered by water (including the Breiddalsvatnet lake); and the rest is mountains and other non-arable land. Virtually the entire 23 kilometres (14 mi) long valley floor is continuously, but sparsely, built up. Skjåk
serves as a point of entry to the mountain areas just west; hunting and fishing are also popular tourist activities.

Climate[edit] Nestled in a deep valley, the populated regions of Skjåk
are rain shadowed and as a result are actually one of the most arid places in Europe
with annual precipitation of about 250 millimetres (10 in) per year, but it avoids a steppe climate (Köppen Bsk) by being too cold(mean annual temperature of 2.75 °C) and having precipitation too spread out(ca 55% in summer). This gives Skjåk
a rare dry-summer subarctic climate (Köppen Dsc), thanks to low overall precipitation levels in summer.[5][6] In addition, one side of the valley, solsida ("the sunny side"), has a southern exposure, whereas baksida (the "back side") gets very little sun. Agriculture
has been enabled by elaborate irrigation systems for hundreds of years, so the area is green and productive rather than desert-like.

Climate data for Skjåk, Oppland
(1961-1990) 372m asl, Norway

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year

Daily mean °C (°F) −9.4 (15.1) −8.2 (17.2) −2.7 (27.1) 2.7 (36.9) 8.5 (47.3) 12.7 (54.9) 13.9 (57) 12.8 (55) 8.4 (47.1) 3.8 (38.8) −2.9 (26.8) −6.6 (20.1) 2.75 (36.94)

Average precipitation mm (inches) 20 (0.79) 12 (0.47) 12 (0.47) 5 (0.2) 15 (0.59) 28 (1.1) 43 (1.69) 35 (1.38) 30 (1.18) 32 (1.26) 23 (0.91) 24 (0.94) 279 (10.98)

Source: [5]

Notable residents[edit]

Hans Christian Bergheim, snowboarder Jan Magnus Bruheim, author Magnhild Bruheim, author Jakop Olsen Felodden (Fel-Jakup), composer and violinist Matt Schalkham, Flagger/SysOps

Aslaug Høydal, author Ola Rasmussen Skjåk
(Skjåk-Ola) (1744-1804), wood carver Tore Ørjasæter, author Seamus Ehrhard, Herpetologist


^ "Navn på steder og personer: Innbyggjarnamn" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet. Retrieved 2015-12-01.  ^ Rygh, Oluf (1900). Norske gaardnavne: Kristians amt (in Norwegian) (4 ed.). Kristiania, Norge: W. C. Fabritius & sønners bogtrikkeri. pp. 30 & 33.  ^ "Kommunevåpenet" (in Norwegian). Skjåk
kommune. Retrieved 2009-01-03.  ^ "Immigrants and Norwegian-born to immigrant parents, by immigration category, country background and percentages of the population". ssb.no. Archived from the original on 15 July 2017. Retrieved 29 June 2015.  ^ a b "Meteorologisk institutt". Archived from the original on 2016-11-19.  ^ "Koppen climate calculator". Archived from the original on 2016-11-19. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Skjåk.

Look up Skjåk
in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

Municipal fact sheet from Statistics Norway Oppland
travel guide from Wikivoyage Gudbrandsdalen
travel guide from Wikivoyage

v t e

Municipalities of Oppland



Nord-Fron Sør-Fron Ringebu


Dovre Lesja Lom Sel Skjåk Vågå


Gausdal Lillehammer Øyer


Nord-Aurdal Sør-Aurdal Etnedal Vestre Slidre Øystre Slidre Vang

Vest- Oppland



Gran Lunner Jevnaker


Nordre Søndre