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Ål is a municipality in Buskerud county, Norway. It is part of the traditional region of Hallingdal. The administrative centre of the municipality is the village of Ål. The parish of Aal was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt). The area of Hol was separated from the municipality of Aal in 1877 to become a separate municipality.

Ål kommune
Ål Village.jpg
Coat of arms of Ål kommune
Coat of arms
Official logo of Ål kommune
Buskerud within
Norway
Ål within Buskerud
Ål within Buskerud
Coordinates: 60°40′32″N 8°34′37″E / 60.67556°N 8.57694°E / 60.67556; 8.57694Coordinates: 60°40′32″N 8°34′37″E / 60.67556°N 8.57694°E / 60.67556; 8.57694
CountryNorway
CountyBuskerud
DistrictHallingdal
Administrative centreÅl
Government
 • Mayor (2015)Solveig Vestenfor (Labour Party)
Area
 • Total1,171 km2 (452 sq mi)
 • Land1,081 km2 (417 sq mi)
Area rank#85 in Norway
Population
(2015)
 • Total4,716
 • Rank#207 in Norway
 • Density4/km2 (10/sq mi)
Demonym(s)Åling[1]
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
ISO 3166 codeNO-0619
Official language formNynorsk
Websitewww.aal.kommune.no
Village of Ål in winter

Contents

GeographyEdit

80% of Ål municipality is at least 900 meters (3,000 ft) above sea level. The highest point is Raudbergnuten at 1,819 meters (5,968 ft).[2] Reineskarvet, the significant mountain of Ål has a summit of 1,791 meters (5,876 ft). In the winter, Ål has over 400 kilometers (250 mi) of maintained cross country ski trails. [3]

Ål borders the municipalities of Hol, Gol, Hemsedal, Nes, Nore og Uvdal, and Lærdal.

The Bergen Line, the rail line between Oslo and Bergen runs through Ål. Ål Station has an elevation of 436 meters (1,430 ft) and is the halfway station on the Bergen Line.

Hallingdalselva runs in the bottom of the main valley, forming Strandafjorden, a long, narrow lake for several kilometers. Ål has several hydroelectric dams. Hallingdalselva runs partly in a tunnel from here to Nes municipality, where it drives a large turbine power plant.

General informationEdit

Approximately 5,000 inhabitants spread over several smaller villages including Ål, Torpo, Leveld, Vats, Trillhus, Granhagen, Breie and Strand. There is a strong cultural tradition, with folk music being a big part of people's identity. Folkemusikkveka is held every May for a week.

The traditional industry of Ål is mostly small-farming. Many livestock farms are still in operation with small herds of sheep, dairy cattle, and goats. Crop growing is difficult because of the steep valley walls, but wheat, barley, rye, and potatoes have all been grown in the past.

The award-winning local paper Hallingdølen has offices in the village of Ål. It comes on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. Ål has a Videregående school and a Folkehøyskole for deaf students.

NameEdit

The Old Norse form of the name was Áll. The name is identical with the word áll which means "ditch" or "gully". In 1921, the spelling of the name was changed from "Aal" to "Ål".[4]

Coat-of-armsEdit

The coat-of-arms is from modern times. The arms were granted on 30 November 1984 and show three silver diamond shapes in a vertical line on a red background. The designs are taken from an old and common pattern used in hand-woven tapestries in the area. They also symbolize the three churches in the municipality: Ål, Torpo, and Leveld.[5][6]

Number of minorities (1st and 2nd generation) in Ål by country of origin in 2017[7]
Ancestry Number
  Poland 161
  Eritrea 50
  Somalia 24
  Denmark 23
  Sweden 17

AttractionsEdit

  • Torpo stave church (built around 1190 - 1200) is located in Torpo
  • Ål Bygdamuseum is built around the old Leksvol farm, and is very typical of the area. The buildings go back to the 17th century. In later years the museum gained additional buildings, Øvre tunet, Stølen, and Husmannsplassen, where a stone cottage has been reconstructed, similar to those used in the mountain sæter.
  • Hallingdal feriepark, camping with high ropes course and activities
  • Ål Skisenter, downhill skiing facility


GalleryEdit

Notable people from ÅlEdit

Sister citiesEdit

The following cities are twinned with Ål:[8]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Navn på steder og personer: Innbyggjarnamn" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet. Retrieved 2015-12-01.
  2. ^ "Kultur- og helsekommunen Ål". Ål Turistinformasjon (in Norwegian).
  3. ^ "Cross-country". Ål Turistinformasjon.
  4. ^ Knappen, Audun. "Kommunenavn i Buskerud" (in Norwegian). Terra Buskerud. Retrieved 2009-01-05.
  5. ^ Norske Kommunevåpen (1990). "Nye kommunevåbener i Norden". Retrieved 2009-01-05.
  6. ^ "Kommunevåpen" (in Norwegian). Ål kommune. Archived from the original on 2009-12-22. Retrieved 2009-01-05.
  7. ^ "Immigrants and Norwegian-born to immigrant parents, by immigration category, country background and percentages of the population". ssb.no. Archived from the original on 29 July 2017. Retrieved 29 July 2017.
  8. ^ "Venskap Ål-Sololá" (in Norwegian). Ål kommune. Archived from the original on 2011-07-24. Retrieved 2009-01-05.

External linksEdit