Finnsnes i Fest

This week (1 – 7 August, 2016) is Finnsnes i Fest, our ‘city’ festival with food, music, activities and the fun fair.

As a family, we’re playing two concerts. The first is on Wednesday:


Hurtig konsert 01eHurtigkonsert

A short and fun, family oriented concert in the ‘knowledge park’ (library) foyer. 11.20 am might seem like a strange time, but it’s designed so that visitors travelling on the coastal ‘steamer’, the Hurtigruten, can join the audience.

Susanna has already played one such concert this summer, which is part of a series organised by the culture school on their Parkert Piano (parked piano). Parkert Pianos have been placed in a variety of public spaces around Norway and are available for anyone to play. Perhaps the one which has drawn most attention is in the departure lounge at Oslo airport.

The program will be:

  • Ponchielli           Concerto for euphonium (excerpts)
  • John Golland    Peace
  • Jon Blamire      Copy Cats

If you’re in the area, pop in, get some knowledge, then grab a coffee / something to eat in the foyer cafe, and listen to the concert. Very civilised!

Everyone welcome.

The Day We Lost The Sun

On Monday we got our first taste of night, as the sun set below the horizon after about 2 months with the “mignight sun”. We also got some sunset colours, rolling low cloud and sea fog.

This was the view towards Dyrøy:


This was looking from Finnsnes towards Siland on Senja:




This was on Senja, looking north:


And back again in Finnsnes, looking out over Silsand and Senja:



After Kiste

On the way back from dropping my walking partner home after our trip up Kistefjell, the weather quickly changed. Dark clouds rolled in, with distant rain lit by a sinking sun (the sun didn’t actually set until 3 days later!). A bit of longed for colour after a very grey summer.

This was Senja:

In the distance are the mountains on Kvaløya, about 40 km away (near Tromsø):



Back in Finnsnes, this was the view over the bridge, to Senja:


Here are some zoomed in pictures, with the characterist shape of Breidtind (Senja’s highest peak) in the background, seemingly caught in golden rain:


Kiste Surprise

At 30 C / 86 f, last Friday was the warmest day so far in 2016. With pretty much pin sharp views, it afforded a great opportinuty to take my friend, “The Mountain Goat”, for a walk up Kistefjell (literally coffin mountain). It’s approximately 5.5 miles (9 km) to the summit which is 1003 m (about 3300 feet).

So, equipped with a lot of water and cameras, we set off at his usual brisk pace. I must be getting fitter, because I could keep up, and we made the top in about 2 hours. However, on the way, there were a couple of distractions. The first was to sign the visitors book at about half way, and to admire the already considerable views:


The second was the sudden appearance of reindeer. We had seen their footprints on the track, and my freind thought it would be exciting to see them. I didn’t think it was very likely, but then they started coming down the track . . .

. . . a female and a very big male, heading straight towards us!


My friend then decided to follow them for a closer look, only to come back rather quickly, with the male in pursuit:

The male then kept reappearing as we headed for the summit:

Here is a bit of video, shot using a wobble-cam:

The transmiter on the top is HUGE. 78 m (240′). It’s a very visible landmark!



Having arrived at the top we were disappointed to find that the book to record visits had been removed, and the maintenance people were just leaving, so it wasn’t possible to see inside the tower.

However, our lunch was enlived with another appearance of the reindeer, first about 1000 feet below us . . .

. . . and then suddenly right at the summit:


This is a 360 degree panorama (you can view an interactive version here):


In this 180 degree panorama, looking north, the furthest mountains visible are at least 95 km / 60 miles away (the Lygen Alps):


This is the panorama looking south:


Finally it was time to head back home, making good time at 1.5 hours, with a short stop to eat some snow (carefully avoiding the yellow stuff):


Next time we want to extend the tour to include North Kiste, which when viewed from a certain angle (in Gibostad on Senja), looks like an open coffin lid (hence the name):

All in all a good day, despite a bit of arctic sun burn!

Segla 2

We are now on our long Norwegian summer holidays. Sarah has 5 weeks in England, mostly with her mum. I have 3 weeks at home here in north Norway. This summer the weather has been largely poor (low, grey cloud, with occasional rain and cool temperatures). However, today the sun came out, so I and about half the tourists in the area headed to Segla, a mountain on Senja. I went with a young freind (a refugee who for security reasons his face can’t be shown), whom I will call the “Mountain Goat” because that’s how he walks / runs!

Segla means Sail in Norwegian, because on the cliff side, that’s what it looks like (photo from winter):

This is the view from half way up:


And this is the 360 degree view from the top:


Click here for an interactive panorama.

Here are some more views:


Whilst at the top some low cloud blew across, which created an amazing triple rainbow below us! A couple of the pictures are a little enhanced:


And this was on the way back down:


A satisfying 640 m / 2096 ft!