Saturday, February 11, 2012

Norway snowshoe expedition

Norway trip report

Last weekend saw a big dump of snow arrive at Stansted just as we were due to fly out to Norway. Unfortunately this meant that the teams flights were cancelled and a 2 day delay ensued. It was strange to arrive in Norway and for the snowy landscape to look identical to the one we had just left!

Within a couple of hours of arriving we were speeding across a frozen lake with temperatures around minus 15 c on the back of a snow mobile - very cool! We had a lovely 3 course meal with our hosts on the remote island that was to be our base for the first couple of nights and then went for a midnight trek to the highest peak on the island to put our snowshoes through there paces.

The following morning we rose early and set off to climb a nearby peak that stood at 1275m. It was a stunningly beautiful day with blue skies and sunshine. The sun rose as we trekked giving amazing views across the whole of the Hardangervidda Plateau.

After enjoying the summit views we returned to our cosy cabins where a roaring fire, tea and cakes awaited us. We spent the afternoon and evening learning to mush with the huskie team and fishing through the ice.

The final two days of the trip were the expedition element. We loaded up the husky team with our food and camping equipment and trekked about 14km across frozen lakes, over a high mountain pass where we experienced white out conditions and down through the trees into the next valley. Our accommodation for the night was a Norwegian Lavu, a circular canvas tent with a raised sleeping platform, log burning stove and chimney. We cooked our meals, helped sort out the dog team and the enjoyed an evening of live music as Olav our musher played tunes we all sang to on the Mandolin.

Friday was another lovely day with temperatures about minus 8 and the views improving throughout the day. We made our way through snow laden forests and back over the frozen lake to our start point before returning back to a hotel for celebratory beers and food. An awesome week in great company, thanks boys!

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