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Guide hike to Bertelberget

Hear the story and see the place the blacksmith Bertel Olsen found and extracted silvery lead shine already at the end of the 17th century. 4 hour guided hike and storytelling. From 795, – pr. person.

The summer day is good and warm. But up here above Gruben in Mo I Rana, the air is a little fresher, both because we are taller, but also because there is a little more draft in the air up here. But it is a lovely day for a walk in the woods and fields. We hear the crackle from the power plant all the way up to the path, but gradually this decreases and the sounds of nature take over. The small birds compete to sing most beautifully. And if we are lucky, it might splash up a grouse in front of us as well. The trail we walk is well used, so it is clear there has been a lot of activity in the area for a long time. Funny to know about earlier uses of the minerals they found in nature.

The area where Bertel Olsen had mined ore was well known, but it was not until 1729 that it was visited by miner Henning Irgens from Røros Kobberverk. He could confirm that Bertel Olsen had mined ore there, and that the ore was far harder than ordinary lead. It would still be many years (1852) for the deposit in Bertelberget to be registered in accordance with the Mining Act. In 1860, a company was formed called “Ranens Bly og Sølvverk”. The workforce was a mix between local people and experienced miners from Røros. The main mine was operated as a day toll and followed the fall of the ore into the rock. After a couple of years of operation, they had entered 48 meters into the mountain and the relatively narrow lead-gloss strip had then been driven out. At the same time, they got water intrusion into the mine. There is copper ore in the same deposit, but it had a low sales value and thus also little interest in being mined. In the area east and west of the mine, there are several ridges (test drives). These date from 1909. I do not know what was the result of these landslides, but I know that after the winter this year, there has been no other operation on the deposit up there. Most likely, there are still commercial deposits in the depths there.

Today you can see clear signs of mining that was once up there. Tipphaugen outside the main mine can be seen from a good distance before you get there. The remains of the smelting hut are also clearly visible in the terrain. The job in the smelter was a dangerous and unpleasant job where most of the people who worked there were badly damaged by the lead vapor. We meet at Statkraft’s plant at Anleggshammeren above Gruben, and continue from there. The trip is in relatively easy terrain, and we will use approx. 4 hours in total. Up by the old mine, we grab a bite to eat, before returning.