The code of laws in the Gulatingslova known as “Utgjerdsbolken” tells of the first organised sytem of marine defence in Norway:  the “leidang” (lething or fyrd in English). The country was divided into “skipreid” or coastal districts which were responsible for equipping ships with men, provisions and arms for a certain period of time, to serve in the King’s leidang fleet. The leidang had a warning system with mountain-top beacons. There was a guard on watch whose job was to light the beacon if he saw that other beacons had been lit. This was a particularly effective system capable of mobilising the entire coastal defence in only a week. In Outer Sogn the leidang fleet are believed to have gathered at Utvær, which is a sheltered harbour where the fleet could lie in waiting. Once the entire fleet had come together, the King would arrive and the fleet would set out to intercept foreign armies approaching by sea.

There are four large mountain-top beacons around the Gulating. These include the beacon on the Flolidfjellet mountain, which you can see over the Millennium Site towards the north-west.

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