Category Archives: Norway

Advocating a Diet Fitness Book Kickstarter Project

While my early travels were inspired by desires for freedom and discovery, my later trips were more about sports and seeing specific places. My marathons and hiking have led me to some great places and special experiences.

Tromso Marathon Article

One of the highlights was completing the 2007 Tromso Midnight Sun Marathon amongst stupendous natural scenery in the Norwegian Arctic.

Then one of my writing career highlights was having an article about my trip and marathon published in Running Free magazine by the then editor Julia Buckley.

Fitness Diet Book

Julia was running longer distances than me then, taking part in ultra-marathons. She has since focused on getting lean and fit with her Fat Burn routines, and had her first book published last year.

The Fat Burn Revolution book was a best-seller, and Julia is now trying to self-publish her second book, with a focus on diet this time.

Julia has a kickstarter webpage trying to raise funds for it, and I’m happy to recommend her as a dedicated, experienced, friendly and honest fitness coach and writer.

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Tromso, Norway Midnight Sun Marathon Photo

I just found this photo of me running over the bridge after passing the Arctic Cathedral in the 2007 Tromso Midnight Sun Marathon in time to finish off the Norway travel of this blog:

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Marc Latham’s central site is the Greenygrey (http://www.greenygrey.co.uk), and he has books available on Smashwords and Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/author/marclatham).

Oslo, Norway after Leaving Tromso

I left the Tromso – Tromsdalen campsite, and flew to Oslo.

Oslo, Norway Photos

With four or five hours to spare between flights on another sunny warm day in the south of Norway I took the bus into Oslo. A friendly bus driver gave me a map after dropping us off in the north of the centre.

So I walked down through the central sights to the bus station and got the bus from there back to the airport to fly out. I think I saw most of the big attractions from the outside.

I didn’t have much camera battery life after taking the Tromsdalen videos, so it was a case of taking a photo and waiting for the batteries to charge enough to take another one. I managed these two:

Marc Latham’s central site is the Greenygrey (http://www.greenygrey.co.uk), and he has books available on Smashwords and Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/author/marclatham).

Tromsdalen Valley Photos and Videos

I walked up one side of the Tromsdalen Valley. I saw some grey berries on the floor and tried them, thinking they were the cloudberries I’d read about before leaving Britain. I sat down to eat a fruit and milk lunch on the mountain top, and the cloud lifted for a little while on the other side of the valley. I saw a large bird that looked like the sea eagles we’d seen on the edge of land before sailing into open sea for whale-watching.

Tromsdalen Valley Photos

I took a couple of photos, one of me using a self-timer, and another looking back down the valley. I also took a last video, having taken two before.

Selfie before Fashionable

Looking Back Towards Tromsoyo Island

Tromsdalen Valley Videos

I also filmed three videos in the Tromsdalen Valley. The first was about half way along the path, looking back to Tromsoyo Island, and ahead to Tromsdalstinden:

The second was at the end of the valley, under Tromsdalstinden:

The third was up in the clouds:

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The next day I left Tromso, but extended my Norway holiday a little by taking advantage of a half-day between flights to bus into Oslo…

Marc Latham’s central site is the Greenygrey (http://www.greenygrey.co.uk), and he has books available on Smashwords and Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/author/marclatham).

Tromso Whale-Watching Photos

On the 2007 Tromso Midnight Sun marathon eve I went whale watching. The streets of Tromso were flying marathon flags. The Cetacea was a nice boat, with seating inside and plenty of room on the deck for viewing. We passed some musk oxen living on Ryoya island and saw sea eagles, before leaving the fjord and sheer cliffs of Senja behind to sail out to sea. Puffins flew low alongside the ship.

The first time we only saw a distant whale (referring to distance rather than mental attitude), so they offered us another voyage for free. So I sailed again after the marathon. The second time we saw a sperm whale’s tailfin up close, as it dove to the depths, which was both thrilling and touching. So, all in all, it was certainly worth the money.

Tromso Whale-Watching Photos

Here’s some photos. Not many wildlife ones I’m afraid!:

 

Drinking Mack Beer in Tromso, Norway

On my second day in Tromso for the 2007 Midnight Sun Marathon I returned to Tromsoya island over the bridge, and looked back at the cathedral, Tromsdalen and Tromsdalstinden mountain [1,238 metres (4,062 ft)]. at its eastern end. At the end of my time in Tromso I would walk to the foot of the mountain, and stand with awe under its quiet natural beauty.

Tromso Bridge, Cathedral and Tromsdalstinden Photo

I took this photo from Tromso bridge, sticking my right arm out as far as possible to get the curve of the bridge leading to the Arctic Cathedral.

Drinking Mack Beer in Tromso

With the beer a little expensive and my marathon looming I only had the one Mack beer in the historic old bar Olhallen, which was also the cheapest place to drink I think. Mack does say it is the most northern brewery in the world, so it was a good excuse to drink a nice beer.

Tromso Docks Waterfront

Tromso docks waterfront offers great views of the Tromsdalen mainland from jetties backed by colourful buildings.

On and Under Tromso Bridge

There are great views north (first photo below) and south (second photo) of the Tromsøysundet waterway and mountains from Tromso bridge. In the first photo the mountains are on Kvaloya island, and in the second they are on Senja island. The Tromso municipality’s main island of Tromsoya is in the middle of the two.

On the Tromsdalen side the E8 road runs underneath. It reminded me of the Pink Floyd marching hammers.

Gerald Scarfe artwork

Returning to Nature

Returning to the campsite, these trees reminded me of the grey bridge structure. Between the trees is one of the Tromsdalen valley’s many waterfalls, surrounded by pristine forest.

Marc Latham’s central site is the Greenygrey (http://www.greenygrey.co.uk), and he has books available on Smashwords and Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/author/marclatham).

Tromso Norway Arrival for Midnight Sun Marathon

My previous trip to Cuba in 2009 was to Tromso in Norway to run in the 2007 Midnight Sun Marathon.

Tromso, Norway

I had clear sky for my June flight to Oslo and then a couple of hours later another one up over the Arctic Circle boundary to Tromso on Norway’s wild rugged west coast.

The blue sky provided great views of the southern Norway coast, and then up over forests and lakes above Oslo to the snow-capped peaks in the north of Norway and Sweden… as we flew over both countries.

Then we veered west, and I was glad I took online advice to sit on the left for the flight to Tromso, as there were great views of the coast, islands and fjords around the airport.

I walked the 7km (4-5 miles) from the airport to the campsite on the Tromsdalen mainland, passing Lake Prestvannet in the middle of the island on the way. I set my tent up just across from a stream, with lots of trees all around, and mountains rising up behind.

Tromso Photos

I also passed the award-winning architecture of the Tromso cathedral, just across the bridge on the mainland:

This photo is from the mainland looking back at Tromso island and the vertiginous peaks of the Senja coastline in the distance:

The campsite is situated the other side of this water inlet, at the entrance to the Tromsdalen Valley:

Looking back at Tromso island from the bridge across the water:

The never-setting sun over Tromso island:

I walked north on the mainland, and this was looking back at the bridge linking Tromso island with the mainland, with the Senja island mountains in the distance:

Marc Latham’s central site is the Greenygrey (http://www.greenygrey.co.uk), and he has books available on Smashwords and Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/author/marclatham).

Stockholm City Centre Photos

Norway bade farewell
as it had welcomed
showing natural beauty
west coast to eastern city.

OsloStockholm Night Bus

After a few hours in Oslo bus station there was a surprisingly scrambled boarding of the night bus to Stockholm. It was nearly full, so I ended up on the back seat. It therefore reminded me of my Istanbul – Munich bus journey on my first road trip in 1987/88; twenty-five years before.

I slept most of the night, not knowing when I left Norway and arrived in Sweden; my first border crossing outside the U.K. for fifteen years. I only remember that we stopped near a lake at first Swedish light.

We arrived in Stockholm at about 05.30. I thought I’d wait for the hostel to open in the station, but then got bored, and thought I’d make the most of the bright sunny morning.

Stockholm City Centre Photos

The city still slept, and there was little traffic. I saw most of the main Stockholm city centre sights from the outside before going over the hostel. Here’s some photos:

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Marc Latham’s central site is the Greenygrey (http://www.greenygrey.co.uk), and he has books available on Smashwords and Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/author/marclatham).

Bergen to Oslo Train Journey and Voss Photos

After filling up on the hostel breakfast fit for Freya and abundant enough for Odin, whose organic theme just gave it the edge over Bergen‘s brilliant beautiful brekkie, and before my lunchtime train, I walked around the eastern edge of Voss lake; through pine trees and picnic areas to the river.

Nonchalent Norwegian farewell, Bittersweet Swedish Sojourn

I enjoyed the warm spring sunshine with a noisy abundance of life: birds chirped and insects buzzed. Then it was time to catch the train: to Oslo, for a night bus to Stockholm.

I’d always wanted to visit Stockholm, but on that morning I would rather have been returning to the Naeroyfjord; to try and commune with spectacular nature, rather than find myself in a large human community.

Voss Lake and Oslo Train Photos

Here’s some photos from my last morning in Voss and the train journey. Voss lake had nearly melted, after being mostly frozen when I arrived three days before.

While the lake looked ready for summer, the mountains still had their winter coats on; the train took me over and through the May winterland, before dropping down to lovely lakes and fertile forests north-west of Oslo:

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Marc Latham’s central site is the Greenygrey (http://www.greenygrey.co.uk), and he has books available on Smashwords and Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/author/marclatham).

Ulvik Photos: Hardangerfjord Mountain Reflections

When I returned to Ulvik from Eidfjord on the ferry there was a bus soon after back to Voss, but there was also a last bus three hours later. Although I’d already had enough beautiful nature for one day, Ulvik looked a nice town; circling the end of one of Hardangerfjord‘s most easterly tributaries.

I enjoyed walking around the town and fruit farms, and felt particularly rewarded in the last hour of my time with the fjords when the sun and blue skies appeared on the snow-capped western horizon mountains, and the last bus drove me towards them.

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Marc Latham’s central site is the Greenygrey (http://www.greenygrey.co.uk), and he has books available on Smashwords and Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/author/marclatham).