The legend of Guovžageađge/Bear Stone

On the mountain Čiesti in the eastern part of the cultural heritage are, is a large stone block known locally as the Bear Stone – Guovžageađge in Sami. From afar the stone resembles a bear looking out over the fjord.

A legend about the Bear Stone tells about how the people at Mortensnes once took care of a bear cub. The bear was nursed by a dog, played with the children, and was eventually completely domesticated. An evil noaidi (the Sami shaman) living on the south side of the fjord did not like that the bear was living with people. At this time living was tough with famine and starvation, and the offering site was often used. Once when the people were gathered around the offering ring and the bear was there with them, a raven came flying across the fjord. It settled down among the people offering, close by where the bear was sitting. As soon as the raven sat down it turned into a noaidi. The noaiditalked to the bear and said that because it had become fond of people it would turn into stone. On so it happened. The Bear Stone stands there today looking out across the Varangerfjord.

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