Vales of Anduin

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"...It is a long tale..." — Aragorn
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The Vales of Anduin was the collective name for the large valley of the Anduin, specifically the part east of the Misty Mountains. It is where the Gladden River meets the Anduin and forms the Gladden Fields. Throughout history, it had been occupied by Elves, Men and Hobbits.


In the First Age, the Eldar settled east of the river Anduin during the Great Journey, and founded the land of Atyamar, which however was sometime later was afflicted by evil weather and destroyed their homes.[1] The Teleri who were too afraid to cross the Misty Mountains stopped there. They became the Nandor.[2] Later they were joined by the Avari, specifically the Penni, who came west. But eventually some of them left the Vales for the west.

The Silvan Elves established realms on both sides of the Vales, and their remnants were the Elves of Mirkwood or the Galadhrim.[3]

Near the end of the First Age, the Vales were occupied by Edain, the ancestors of the Northmen. Those were in confederation with the Dwarves of Khazad-dûm and the Longbeards and provided food in return for Dwarven weapons and precious items. This cooperation continued until the War of the Elves and Sauron, when the Dwarves closed themselves in their mountains and the Men were scattered.[4][5]

After the disastrous Battle of the Plains, some Northmen were gathered under the leadership of Marhwini son of Marhari, who led them north between Anduin and Mirkwood, eventually settling in the Vales of Anduin between the Carrock and the Gladden Fields.[6] They were joined by many fugitives who came through Mirkwood. This was the birth of the Éothéod.

At the end of the second age Woodmen also came forth to destroy the Orcs who had ambushed Isildur on his return from Gondor. At the end of the third age the middle of Greenwood the Great was granted to the same Woodmen. Just before the War of the Ring the Woodmen also aided the elves in the hunt for Gollum.

Sometime during the Third Age the Hobbits migrated to the Vales of Anduin from an unknown earlier location; the Vales are their first known location before eventually the Shadow of Dol Guldur fell on Greenwood. The Harfoots left for the west in T.A. 1050 and began their Wandering Days. When Angmar threatened Eriador, some of the Stoors would return to the east and around T.A. 1356 settled in the Gladden Fields.[7]

Once a fair and fertile land, it became a dangerous area, beleaguered by the creatures of the Necromancer at Dol Guldur. However, when the evil Kingdom of Angmar was destroyed in T.A. 1975, freeing up land to the north, Frumgar led the Éothéod to the vale between the rivers Greylin and Langwell,[8] where they built a city.

Around the time of Cirion (c. T.A. 2500) the Balchoth, a tribe of Easterlings east of Mirkwood, often made raids through the forest and attacked the Vales until the southern vale was largely deserted. By T.A. 2510 the Balchoth were continuously reinforced from the east, building great boats and rafts on the east shores of Anduin. They swarmed over the River and swept away the defenders but were defeated by the Gondorians and the Éothéod.[9]

In the later years before the War of the Ring, few Northmen dwelt on the shores between the Gladden and Rauros,[10] such as the Beornings.[11] During Grimbeorn's time, the High Pass and the Ford of Carrock were kept open and no Orc or Wolf dared to enter his land.[12]


Firs, strawberries and wild berries[13] (cf.) grew in the Vales.

Portrayal in adaptations

Map of the Vales of Anduin inThe Lord of the Rings Online

20219: The Lord of the Rings Online:

The Vales of Anduin is a region notable for connecting together the in-game regions of Misty Mountains, Lothlorien and Northern Mirkwood which were previously separate and isolated on the game landmass. The Northern Vales are inhabited by Beornings, centered around Grimbeorn's Lodge east of the Great River and Vegbár, a toll-collecting station to the west. The Middle Vales are home to the Woodmen, living in the larger town of Hultvís or the smaller villages of Blómgard and Arhaim. The Southern Vales are patrolled by Galadhrim sentinels who do not settle there. Near the Gladden Fields long-deserted remains of Hobbit smials can be found, while higher up the Misty Mountains sits Kidzul-kâlah, now-abandoned outpost of the once-proud Khazad-Dûm.