Family run for more than 100 years
Ever since Ole Øvstedal set out on his first trip on 1 July 1906, there has always been an Øvstedal at the wheel of the Gjende boats. Harald, the present skipper, is fourth generation, and you might see the fifth generation running along by the quayside.
Harald was born and grew up in Vågå/Gjende. He got boating with his mother’s milk and stopped using a dummy when it fell into the lake from the old wooden boat. He is easy to recognise from his characteristic gait, dark beard and his height. Harald is a carpenter by trade and has his own company, where he works in the winter.
Heidi was also born and grew up in Vågå. She started work at Gjende in the kitchen at Gjendesheim in 1999. She had learned to row as a little girl, so it did not take long before she found a boat and rowed across the river mouth to Harald. Heidi is a qualified pre-school teacher and works as an educational supervisor in the winter.
Johan and Iver are Harald and Heidi’s two sons. Johan and Iver can often be seen on the quayside and the boats. Otherwise you can often see them racing past, Johan in a boat and Iver on his scooter. Kaia the dog can usually be found wherever things are happening.