This article is about the municipality in Nordland. For the village in Akershus, see Hemnes, Akershus.
Hemnes kommune

Coat of arms

Nordland within

Hemnes within Nordland
Coordinates: 66°3′15″N 14°1′50″E / 66.05417°N 14.03056°E / 66.05417; 14.03056Coordinates: 66°3′15″N 14°1′50″E / 66.05417°N 14.03056°E / 66.05417; 14.03056
Country Norway
County Nordland
District Helgeland
Administrative centre Korgen
  Mayor (2011) Kjell Joar Petersen-Øverleir (H)
  Total 1,588.76 km2 (613.42 sq mi)
  Land 1,432.32 km2 (553.02 sq mi)
  Water 156.44 km2 (60.40 sq mi)
Area rank 43 in Norway
Population (2011)
  Total 4,600
  Rank 210 in Norway
  Density 3.2/km2 (8/sq mi)
  Change (10 years) -1.4 %
Demonym(s) Hemnesværing[1]
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
  Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
ISO 3166 code NO-1832
Official language form Neutral
Website www.hemnes.kommune.no
Data from Statistics Norway

Hemnes is a municipality in Nordland county, Norway. It is part of the Helgeland traditional region. The administrative centre of the municipality is the village of Korgen. Other villages include Bjerka, Bleikvasslia, Hemnesberget, and Sund.

View from Korgfjellet mountain in Hemnes (about 400 m amsl) towards Vefsn

The municipality sits south of the Ranfjorden and stretches south and east toward the border with Sweden. The Nordlandsbanen railway line and the European route E06 highway cross Hemnes on their way to the town of Mo i Rana about 20 kilometres (12 mi) to the northeast. The E6 highway enters Hemnes from the west through the Korgfjell Tunnel from Vefsn.

General information

Hemnes municipality, with the highest mountain in Nordland and part of the largest lake

This municipality was established in 1839 when the old municipality of Rana was divided into Sør-Rana and Nord-Rana, shortly after the Formannskapsdistrikt law went into effect. Soon after, in 1844, Sør-Rana was renamed Hemnes.

On 1 July 1918, the southern district of Hemnes (population: 1,369) was separated to become the new municipality of Korgen. This left Hemnes with 3,567 residents. A few months later on 1 January 1919, the eastern area of Bardal (population: 4) was transferred to Nesna. Then on 1 July 1929, Hemnes was split into three municipalities: Sør-Rana, Elsfjord, and Hemnes. After this the municipality of Hemnes only consisted of the village of Hemnesberget and the area immediately around it (population: 1,077). On 1 January 1964, the municipalities of Korgen, Hemnes, the extreme northern part of Hattfjelldal, and the southern part of Sør-Rana were all merged to form a new, larger municipality of Hemnes.[2]


The municipality (originally the parish) is named after the old Hemnes farm (Old Norse: Heimnes, now called Hemnesberget), since the first church was built there. The first element is heimr which means "home" (here in the sense of being "closest to home") and the last element is nes which means "headland", referring to the peninsula on which the farm is located.[3]


The coat-of-arms is from modern times; they were granted on 4 April 1986. The arms show a boat gold clamp on a blue background. Shipbuilding has long been a tradition in the municipality and an element to symbolize shipbuilding was considered appropriate. The symbol chosen is a kind of clamp used to keep the wooden flanks of the ships together, and the blue background represents the ocean.[4]


The Church of Norway has three parishes (sokn) within the municipality of Hemnes. It is part of the Indre Helgeland deanery in the Diocese of Sør-Hålogaland.

Churches in Hemnes
Church NameLocation
of the Church
Year Built
BleikvassliBleikvassli ChurchBleikvasslia1955
HemnesHemnes ChurchHemnesberget1872
KorgenKorgen ChurchKorgen1863


Memorial for Yugoslav partisans taken as POWs.

Second World War

As part of their drive on Northern Norway, a detachment of three hundred German soldiers landed at Hemnes from the captured Norwegian coastal steamer SS Nordnorge on 10 May 1940 and captured the municipality from a platoon of British soldiers from No. 1 Independent Company, despite a spirited defence in the streets of Hemnesberget. A Royal Navy task force consisting of the anti-aircraft cruiser Calcutta and destroyer Zulu sank the former Norwegian steamer and shelled the German forces in the town, but were unable to dislodge the German landing force.

A Norwegian Army detachment attempted a counterattack against the German's positions, but was driven back. The town was again bombarded on 12 May by a passing Royal Navy force without significant effect, leaving Hemnes in German control for the rest of the war.[5]


All municipalities in Norway, including Hemnes, are responsible for primary education (through 10th grade), outpatient health services, senior citizen services, unemployment and other social services, zoning, economic development, and municipal roads. The municipality is governed by a municipal council of elected representatives, which in turn elect a mayor.

Municipal council

The municipal council (Kommunestyre) of Hemnes is made up of 23 representatives that are elected to every four years. Currently, the party breakdown is as follows:[6]

Hemnes Kommunestyre 2015–2019
Party NameName in NorwegianNumber of
 Labour PartyArbeiderpartiet8
 Progress PartyFremskrittspartiet2
 Conservative PartyHøyre6
 Green PartyMiljøpartiet De Grønne1
 Centre PartySenterpartiet4
 Socialist Left PartySosialistisk Venstreparti2
Total number of members:23


Okstindan range with Oksskolten, 1916 m, the highest mountain in North Norway.

The lake Røssvatnet (Southern Sami: Reevhtse) is a lake and reservoir lying partially in the southern part of Hemnes. It has been the site of human occupation since the Stone Age. Its area of 219 square kilometres (85 sq mi) makes it the second largest lake in Norway by surface area. Other lakes include Bleikvatnet, Grasvatnet, Stormålvatnet, and Stormyrbassenget.

The Okstindan mountain range is located in Hemnes, including the mountain Oksskolten. The large Okstindbreen glacier sits atop the mountain range.


  1. "Navn på steder og personer: Innbyggjarnamn" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet. Retrieved 2015-12-01.
  2. Jukvam, Dag (1999). "Historisk oversikt over endringer i kommune- og fylkesinndelingen" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Statistisk sentralbyrå.
  3. Rygh, Oluf (1905). Norske gaardnavne: Nordlands amt (in Norwegian) (16 ed.). Kristiania, Norge: W. C. Fabritius & sønners bogtrikkeri. p. 132.
  4. Norske Kommunevåpen (1990). "Nye kommunevåbener i Norden". Retrieved 2008-11-23.
  5. "The Campaign in Norway". London: HMSO: HyperWar. 1952.
  6. "Table: 04813: Members of the local councils, by party/electoral list at the Municipal Council election (M)" (in Norwegian). Statistics Norway. 2015.
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