Welcome to the table mountains!

There is a special geology here that provides the conditions for many diverse nature types as well as an exciting cultural history. There are fifteen table mountains in the province of Västergötland, and they are all structured in the same way with a series of rock layers. However, each mountain has its own characteristic appearance, and the geology and nature vary from mountain to mountain. Fourteen of the mountains are located within the geopark: Halleberg, Hunneberg, Kinnekulle, Lugnåsberget, Billingen, Mösseberg, Ålleberg, Brunnhemsberget, Tovaberget, Myggeberget, Borgundaberget, Plantaberget, Gerumsberget, and Varvsberget. Gisseberget is also a table mountain but is located outside the geopark boundaries.

Halleberg

Home of the gods

Halleberg is the northernmost one of the twin mountains Halleberg and Hunneberg. It stretches towards Lake Vänern to the north and is separated from Hunneberg by a valley 500 metres wide. The northern part of the mountain is called Hallesnipen. The highest point of Halleberg is at 155 metres above sea level. Like Hunneberg, Halleberg consists of sandstone, alum shale, and dolerite and lacks the limestone and clay shale layers found in most other table mountains. The dolerite layer is very thick, however, up to a maximum of 60 metres. The dolerite slopes give the mountain its characteristic appearance and favour a very special flora and fauna.

Halleberg is regarded by some as the site of Valhalla, the residence of the gods in Norse mythology. One part of the mountain is still called Häcklan, derived from one of Odin’s names: Häcklaman.

Three points of interest at Halleberg

Halleberg’s hillfort

Ovandalen and Hallesnipen

The cobble field at Grytet

Hunneberg

The mountain of the elks

Hunneberg has been a royal hunting ground since 1351, and the mountain has long been famous for its large elk population. The highest point of Hunneberg is at 155 metres above sea level. Hunneberg consists of sandstone, alum shale, and dolerite. The limestone and clay shale layers, usually found in the table mountains, are lacking here. But the dolerite layer is very thick, up to a maximum of 60 metres. The dolerite slopes give the mountain its characteristic appearance and favour a very special flora and fauna.

Three points of interest at Hunneberg

Västra Tunhems gruvor

The Royal Hunt Museum – Elk Hill

Gyllene spiken

Kinnekulle

The blossoming mountain

Kinnekulle has a complete set of layers featuring all of the rocks found in the table mountains: basement, sandstone, alum shale, limestone, clay shale, and dolerite. The dolerite layer is very thin, however – only about 10 metres thick. That is why Kinnekulle has such a characteristic conical shape and lacks the big dolerite plateau that many of the other mountains have.

Three points of interest at Kinnekulle

Munkängarna naturreservat

The large quarry on Kinnekulle

Lugnåsberget

Traces of millstone mining

Lugnåsberget is one of our smallest table mountains as well as the northernmost one. It reaches a maximum height of 155 metres above sea level. Lugnåsberget consists almost exclusively of sandstone, except for a small layer of alum shale at the top. The dolerite layer here was probably very thin, or non-existent – thus the mountain lacked a protective cap and the sedimentary rocks have eroded away. From the 12th century to the early 20th, Lugnåsberget was a centre for millstone mining. Traces of the millstone production can still be seen on and around the mountain in the form of some 600 quarries and 55 mines.

Points of interest at Lugnåsberget

Stentorget kvarnstenar

The millstone quarry at Lugnås

Billingen

Our largest mountain in terms of surface area

Billingen stretches across the three municipalities of Skövde, Skara, and Falköping, and its highest point is at 304 metres above sea level. Its stratification follows the pattern of the other table mountains: basement, sandstone, alum shale, limestone, clay shale, and dolerite. Billingen is the largest table mountain in terms of surface area and is divided into North Billingen and South Billingen. The large dolerite plateau on the top is scarcely populated and is characterized by woodland and wetland.

Billingen has a long history as a centre for limestone mining; the lime was used to manufacture cement. Alum shale has also been quarried here, and there are still active dolerite quarries. The city of Skövde is partly situated on the slopes of Billingen, and the mountain is a popular outdoor recreation area.

Three points of interest at Billingen

Mösseberg

A view of the landscape

The highest point of Mösseberg is at 327 metres above sea level, and the mountain rises about 100 metres above the surrounding plain. The western part of Mösseberg is called Västerberget and is separated from the rest by a rift valley called Vråhålan.

The city of Falköping is situated on Mösseberg’s eastern slopes and the mountain is an important outdoor recreation area. There is a ski slope here, as well as mountain bike courses and jogging tracks. The lookout tower by the zoo offers a breathtaking view of the table mountain landscape.

Points of interest at Mösseberg

Mösseberg’s hillfort

Mösseberg’s viewpoint

Ålleberg

Our highest table mountain

The highest point on Ålleberg is at 335 metres above sea level, making it the highest of all the table mountains in Västergötland. The mountain rises about 100 metres above the surrounding landscape, with steep dolerite slopes to the north and a less steep approach to the south. Ålleberg is situated on Falbygden’s limestone plateau and the mountain itself consists of clay shale and dolerite. Dolerite is only found in the northern section. The limestone extends around the mountain and provides fertile and nutrient-rich agricultural soil. The geology here favours particular types of plants, with broadleaf trees on the mountain slopes and species-rich meadowland and pasture.

Ålleberg has been a popular site for gliding since 1941, and there is still a gliding school and a gliding museum here today.

Brunnhemsberget

295 metres above sea level between Falköping and Skövde

Brunnhemsberget is located south of Billingen and is sometimes regarded as a spur projecting from that mountain. In turn, Tovaberget and Myggeberget are sometimes regarded as spurs projecting to the north from Brunnhemsberget.

The greater part of Brunnhemsberget is located in Falköping municipality, but the northern part belongs to Skövde municipality. The rocks in Brunnhemsberget are the same as in the other table mountains: basement, sandstone, alum shale, limestone, clay shale, and dolerite. The dolerite plateau has an elevation of 290 metres above sea level, with the highest point at 295 metres above sea level.

Tovaberget

Nature reserve on the western slopes

The rocks in Tovaberget are the same as in the other table mountains: basement, sandstone, alum shale, limestone, clay shale, and dolerite. Both Tovaberget and Myggeberget are sometimes regarded as spurs projecting from Brunnhemsberget. The dolerite is visible at Tovaberget in the form of a precipice 10–15 metres high.

On the western slopes of Tovaberget is a nature reserve, where the limy clay shale favours fertile soils, herb-rich woodland, and lime-loving moss flora close to streams and marshy woodland. In some places where the water is calcareous, we find alkaline fens with a diverse flora.

Myggeberget

A small table mountain

Between Brunnhemsberget and South Billingen lies a small table mountain, rising 284 metres above sea level – Myggeberget. The rocks we find in Myggeberget are the same as in the other table mountains: basement, sandstone, alum shale, limestone, clay shale, and dolerite. Myggeberget shares its dolerite plateau with Tovaberget, which is lower but larger in terms of surface area. Both Myggeberget and Tovaberget are sometimes regarded as spurs projecting from Brunnhemsberget.

Borgundaberget

Covered by woodland

Borgundaberget is one of the smallest table mountains. The mountain is covered by broadleaf woodland with rare mosses and lichen, and also houses one of Skaraborg’s most species-rich pastures. The highest point of Borgundaberget is at 285 metres above sea level.

Borgundaberget recently became a nature reserve, and a parking lot, service area, and hiking trail will be constructed within a few years.

Plantaberget

305 metres above sea level between Falköping and Tidaholm

The rocks in Plantaberget are the same as in the other table mountains (basement, sandstone, alum shale, limestone, clay shale, and dolerite), but the mountain is part of the same limestone plateau as Varvsberget and Gerumsberget. The actual visible mountain thus consists only of clay shale and dolerite. Plantaberget’s dolerite plateau covers more than four square kilometres. Another name for Plantaberget is Högstenaberget. Its highest point is at 305 metres above sea level.

Varvsberget

The mountain with many names

The rocks in Varvsberget are the same as in the other table mountains (basement, sandstone, alum shale, limestone, clay shale, and dolerite), but the mountain is part of the same limestone plateau as Gerumsberget and Plantaberget. The actual visible mountain thus consists only of clay shale and dolerite. Varvsberget is connected to Gerumsberget to the south.

The name is derived from the ancient village of Varv to the east of the mountain, but a number of other names have been used throughout the centuries: Fårdalsberget, Granberget, and Kungslebaberget. There are traces of several ancient fortifications here, such as the castle Lenaborg on the northern slope, where Birger Jarl resided in the 13th century.

Gerumsberget

Archaeological finds on the mountain top

The rocks in Gerumsberget are the same as in the other table mountains (basement, sandstone, alum shale, limestone, clay shale, and dolerite), but the mountain is part of the same limestone plateau as Varvsberget and Plantaberget. The actual visible mountain thus consists only of clay shale and dolerite. The name Gerumsberget is very old, found in written sources dating back to the 14th century. The mountain is situated between the municipalities of Falköping and Tidaholm, and reaches a height of 326 metres above sea level.

Several archaeological finds have been discovered in a bog (Hjortamossen) atop the mountain, including a wool cloak, an oar, and a fishing net.

Gisseberget

A table mountain outside the geopark

Gisseberget is one of the smallest table mountains in Västergötland in terms of surface area but it is also one of the highest, reaching 327 metres above sea level. The mountain lies in Tidaholm municipality and is thus not a part of Platåbergens Geopark. Gisseberget is a part of the same limestone plateau as Plantaberget, Varvsberget, and Gerumsberget, and the actual visible mountain thus consists only of clay shale and dolerite.