The Tverrfjellhytta, built by Snøhetta and located in Hjerkinn, is now open to the public as an observation pavilion for the Wild Reindeer Foundation educational programmes. To reach this spectacular sight, there is a 1.5km trail that leads visitors over the rocky trail of the Dovrefjell mountains.

The mountains hold a unique place in Norwegian heritage as they are home to tales, myths and legends that have been passed down from one generation to another. The location has had many visitors pass through its trails over the years, leaving their own mark on its mountains side. From travellers, hunters, miners and military excursions. It has lent itself to each of these skills, for each to tell their story.

“The building design is based on a contrast between ideas – a rigid outer shell and a soft, organic inner core, designers Snøhetta say. “The wooden core is shaped like rock or ice that has been eroded by natural forces like wind and running water, and is placed within a rectangular frame of raw steel and glass.”

The mountain range forms a barrier between the Northern and Southern parts of Norway. The designers have tried to contrast this in the pavilion, displaying a hard rigid outer shell that contrasts the organic inner core. The insides have been made to look like natural rock eroded over time by the elements, much like the mountain it sits on. The outer shell is a frame of steel and glass which reflects the landscape helping it to blend in with its surroundings.

“The place is really quite extraordinary,” architect and project manager Knut Bjørgum told Iconeye. “We were very intrigued by its contrasts, the large scale of the mountains and the small flowers and plants.”

He added: “Our approach was to really get to know the vernacular architecture of this landscape,” Bjørgum says. “Using traditional building materials like wood but doing it with a modern twist.”

Having achieved their goal of blending the traditional with the modern,Snøhetta will also prepare to open Europe’s first underwater restaurant.

For now though, Tverrfjellhytta:

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