Tryvannshogda and Holmenkollen

Tryvannshogda and Holmenkollen

Any reader of my blogs will know that they are a mixture of current and past destinations, and as Christmas will soon be here and gone and the New Year beckons, my mind wandered back to February 2006 when I paid a short visit to snowy Oslo.

I’m not sure why us Brits keep banging on about the weather all the time, because living in a temperate weather zone means that we don’t get extreme conditions like other parts of the world.

I’m not saying that we don’t get our fair share of rain, but extreme heat and cold are rare in comparison, and I suppose it’s one of the reasons why you’ll find plenty of half-baked bodies from our Sceptred Isle on the beaches of the Costa del Sol every summer.

‘Mad Dogs and Englishmen’ may well go out in the Midday Sun, but I’m not one of them anymore. These days, I prefer taking holidays in places like Scandinavia rather than Torremolinos thank you very much.

The problem for those of us who don’t live in Scandinavia is that we find it expensive, so for someone like me, visiting Oslo in the depth of winter kills two birds with one stone – it’s cheaper and it’s not hot.

Saying that it wasn’t hot when the plane touched down at Oslo airport is somewhat of an understatement. It was so cold, that inside the terminal they were serving coffee on a stick (I made that bit up), but I’m sure you get the gist.

Norwegians, like all Scandinavians, take this sort of weather in their stride, and even though we landed and drove into the city in a blizzard during rush hour, there wasn no suggestion that there would be any trouble getting to the hotel as normal. Back in dear old Blighty the plane wouldn’t have even landed.

After checking-in, I ventured out into the bitterly cold evening air and found a local café/bar where customers were sat outside – yep! you heard that right – outside the bar. Even though it was apparently -10 degrees here, it seemed to be the norm. Mind you, the establishment provided blankets and candles to make it a more pleasant experience, but even so, I didn’t hang around too long because a) the (cold) beer was expensive, b) I didn’t want to get frostbite and c) I wanted to be up bright and early in the morning for my trip up to Tryvannshogda and Holmenkollen.

Normally, I would take a look around the city centre first before venturing too far, but as I only had two full days in Oslo and I was staying in the city centre anyway, I focused my attention on seeing things that I don’t normally see at home – and Holmenkollen was definitely one of them.

Holmenkollen lies on the north-western outskirts of the city and is an outdoor recreational area, which at this time of the year means winter sports. For somebody who’s never put a pair of skis on his life, you may wonder why I decided to venture up here, but like I said, it’s somewhere different.

I made an early start so that I could make the most of the day, but anybody with any sense would have jumped straight back under the bedclothes on seeing the weather outside. Instead I trudged through the snowy city streets to the T-bane stop outside the National Theatre where I was hoping to catch the T1 to the end of the journey at Frognerseteren.

I’d already heard that this winter has given Oslo the most snow it’s had for thirty years and I was seriously wondering whether the public transport system would deliver me up to Frognerseteren – but this is Norway not North Devon.

Not only was it running, it was also cram packed with skiers and I had to stand up for the next 40 minutes.

Many of them got off at the Holmenkollen stop, but I wanted to go up to Tryvannstarnet, a TV Tower which, according to the latest information I had, said that the observation deck would be open today, and as long as it stopped snowing, I might just be able to see Sweden.

Walking up to Tryvannstarnet

Walking up to the TV Tower from the tram stop was quite challenging in these conditions, but on the plus side, I’d left most of the winter sports enthusiasts behind – at least for now, and the sky was beginning to brighten up. Maybe I could get those views after all. Eventually I made it to the top of the hill – only to find the tower was shut! Unbeknown to me, it had recently been closed to the public permanently. Thanks very much! and so it was a case of traipsing back down to Frognerseteren.

The Tryvannstarnet TV Tower

At least it was downhill, but I felt completely out of place. Everyone I met either had skis or a toboggan. The snow here was really deep in places and at one point when I had to jump out the way of a toboggan I nearly disappeared altogether.

Still, at the bottom was the Frognerseteren Restaurant, which is a rustic sort of place and just what I needed. But before I managed to make it inside, I ended up on my back. I’m afraid I’ve got a bad reputation for doing this sort of thing for all sorts of reasons: This time it was because it was slippery, and even though, unsurprisingly, I suffer from a bad back my haversack saved the day – even if it didn’t save my dignity.

Skiers in the Winterpark

After recovering my composure, I retreated inside the café/restaurant and grabbed a coffee and the Norwegian equivalent of a Kit-Kat and chilled out next to the log fire – or should I say “thawed out”.

The Frognerseteren Cafe/Restaurant
View from the Restaurant

Ready to do battle again I caught the next available tram back down to Holmenkollen and took another uphill hike to the Skimuseum. On reflection, I don’t think it was all that far, it just seemed like it in these conditions.

The Skimuseum is exactly what it says, but it also includes a spectacular ski jump, which is what I really came here to see.

A lift transported me up so far, but then there were some steps, more steps and then two more steep flights of steps to get to the top. Surely, they can’t manage this in skis! The view down is scary to say the least. Why anybody would want to jump off here I have no idea. One thing’s for sure, you wouldn’t want to make a false start and clamber all the way back up to do it all over again.

Holmenkollen
The Holmenkollen Ski Jump
Holmenkollen Kapell

On a clear day the views would have been great, but by the time I got up here conditions were less than ideal for taking decent photographs, and so I gingerly made my way down to the tram stop and back to the relative comfort of the city centre where I finished the day off in the Munch Museum.

Edvard Munch’s most famous work of art is ‘The Scream’ which is what I really came here to see. There are several versions, but the most celebrated one is the one displayed here in the museum – except that it wasn’t: It had been stolen. First, the TV Tower was shut, then the weather closed in when I was on top of the Ski Jump and now Munch’s famous painting has been stolen. It’s enough to make anybody scream! – Perhaps I should have gone to Torremolinos after all!

Postcard of 'The Scream'
Postcard of 'The Scream'
print
Please follow and like us:
32

26 thoughts on “Tryvannshogda and Holmenkollen

  1. Pingback: The Boat Museums of Bygdøy - Easymalc's Wanderings

  2. myplaidheart

    I have a friend from Oslo and have always wanted to make a visit (even if it is freezing cold). As they say, “There is no bad weather, just bad clothes.” 🙂

    By the way, your posts all look great on your actual site, however, in Reader there is a lot of gobbleygook where the photos should be. I remember you said you had had some trouble with your site previously so thought you might want to know.

    Example: [vc_row][vc_column][vc_single_image image="8959" img_size="full" add_caption="yes"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner])

    Reply
    1. Easymalc Post author

      Thanks for the heads up Wendy. I’ve given up trying to fix the problems to be honest. As you can see there’s nothing wrong with the website itself. It’s all to do with Reader not communicating with Easymalc’s Wanderings which is on WordPress.org rather than WordPress.com.It’s frustrating because I really wanted to have some interaction and most people just don’t bother if they have to go through the website.I’m pleased that you’ve made the effort though. Thank you.

      Reply
      1. myplaidheart

        That must be extremely frustrating. I had an issue myself awhile back where the tags assigned to my posts were all mixed up. On my actual site, the posts contained the tags I had assigned to them. In Reader, though, they were totally mixed up. If anyone had been paying attention, it would have made me look really stupid! I corresponded with WP support several times and they were unable to provide a solution. After awhile, they started passing the buck and in the end, I think they just hoped I’d forget about it and go away. Very frustrating considering the amount I am paying for my site. I ended up just going in post by post and manually correcting every single post by hand. VERY frustrating.

        Reply
        1. Easymalc Post author

          I can understand that they get a lot of issues to sort out but they seem to be very quick to say that the issue has been resolved even though it hasn’t.

          I don’t expect many people to follow my blogs but it makes it all worthwhile when somebody does. I love the interaction because there’s so much to learn and enjoy from other people’s blogs too – yours included.

          Reply
            1. Easymalc Post author

              Thanks for those kind words Wendy. I don’t have any technical problems looking at your pages, so I’ll make sure that you know I’ve read them. Have a great New Year 🙂

              Reply
    1. Easymalc Post author

      Thanks Mike. It’s been an absolute pleasure to make your aquaintance this year. I hope you and Mrs B have a great Christmas and New Year too.

      Reply
  3. Stuart Templeton

    Another fantastic post Malc. Wow what a place to visit to get you in the Christmassy spirit – that scenery is spectacular!
    That ski jump though – you were braver than me going up there, I’ll never understand what possess people to jump off one of those!

    Reply
    1. Easymalc Post author

      Thanks again Stuart. There’s no way I’d ever contemplate jumping off the top of there. I can fall over easily enough at ground level.

      Reply
  4. toonsarah

    I love all your photos of the snow but that’s as far as it goes – I share your dislike of being too hot but I don’t like being too cold either!! I have to say though that I’m impressed at the efficiency of the public transport system under these conditions, which seem extreme even by their usual standards. We were once in Oslo in February (for a football match) and although cold and icy it was nothing like this!

    Reply
    1. Easymalc Post author

      I’m surprised you don’t like the cold Sarah. I always thought that the colder it got, the quicker Newcastle fans whipped their shirts off 🙂

      Reply
  5. Alli Templeton

    Firstly, wow, what amazing photos. And so festive! I’m sure all the trials and tribulations were well worth it for the scenery. That ski jump looks so scary. I don’t ski either, and looking at that I can see why. Sorry you didn’t get to the tower for the views, and that The Scream was missing – how ironic that you’d made such an effort to get there only to want to scream because it wasn’t there. That painting holds a special meaning for me, because it was used as the programme cover for a unique theatrical production my school put on when I was 15. It was a collection of readings and poems that charted a person’s (my character’s, as it was), from birth to death, put together by my wonderful drama teacher. I have very fond memories of the rehearsals and the show nights. So thanks for another lovely festive post, Malc. Great, as ever.

    Reply
    1. Easymalc Post author

      And thank you for your kind comments again Alli. It makes writing these blogs worthwhile to hear that they bring back memories for people. I didn’t know that you were also an actress (or do I have to say actor these days?). Is there no end to your accomplishments? 🙂

      Reply
      1. Alli Templeton

        Oh bless you, Malc. I did do some acting when I was in my teens and 20s, but nowadays it’s all about the history. And yes, there is very much an end to my accomplishments. I’m hopeless at housework and can’t do anything with needles except draw blood. I can’t sew, and it took me 20 years to knit a scarf! 😀

        Reply
        1. Easymalc Post author

          Join the club. When I was in the cubs I failed my ‘House Orderly’ Badge. I think I must have been the only one to have ever failed – but I had to agree with the examiner 🙂

          Reply
            1. Easymalc Post author

              I’ve got plenty of tales about my heoric failures if we ever meet up over a glass of mead or two. I’m now waiting to hear how Sticky Rogers turns out this weekend. Good luck with it. Fingers crossed 🙂

              Reply
              1. Alli Templeton

                Sounds like great fun, Malc – we’ll swap heroic failure stories! Young Sticky will hopefully be unleashed onto the world blogging stage on Sunday, together with a couple of lovely meady festive drinks to try out. Should be fun. See you then! 🙂

                Reply

Please feel free to leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.