Six-Years Ago (02-February-2013) — Norway

Gone to See Norway 2013 Chasing the Northern Lights. Day 5: Hurtigruten MS Nordkapp Norwegian Coastal Voyage Northbound (Trondheim and Rørvik).

On the second full day of the northbound Hurtigruten voyage, the ship only stops in two ports: Trondheim (06:00-12:00) and Rørvik (20:30-21:15). Having six hours in Trondheim allowed us to spend some time to see the city. Our first stop was at Nidaros Cathedral. The exterior of the cathedral is a target rich environment for religious statues and gargoyles. But it was cold outside. The last time I was here in 2007 I said I would love to go back with a perspective control lens to record all sides of the exterior of the cathedral. Well, I didn’t bring that lens along, so had to do with a Nikon 1 V2 camera and an older 180 mm f/2.8 lens. It was cloudy and still relatively dark in the morning, so the images are noisy. The statues can be identified here. After leaving Trondheim, we passed the Kjeungskjær Lighthouse.

Lonely bench in the snow. Trondheim overlook. Image taken with a Nikon 1 V2 camera and 10 mm f/2.8 lens (ISO 800, 10 mm, f/2.8, 1/60 sec). (David J Mathre)
Lonely bench in the snow. Trondheim overlook. Image taken with a Nikon 1 V2 camera and 10 mm f/2.8 lens (ISO 800, 10 mm, f/2.8, 1/60 sec). (David J Mathre)



Individual images from the slide show can be viewed here.

Kjeungskjær Lighthouse in Norway on a Cold Windy Rainy Winter Day from the Deck of the Hurtigruten MS Nordkapp. Image taken with a Nikon D800 and 180 mm f/2.8D lens (ISO 400, 180 mm, f/2.8, 1/320 sec).Kjeungskjær Lighthouse (David J Mathre)
Kjeungskjær Lighthouse in Norway on a Cold Windy Rainy Winter Day from the Deck of the Hurtigruten MS Nordkapp. Image taken with a Nikon D800 and 180 mm f/2.8D lens (ISO 400, 180 mm, f/2.8, 1/320 sec).Kjeungskjær Lighthouse (David J Mathre)

Twelve-Years Ago (02-February-2007) — Norway

Gone to See Norway 2007 Family Winter Vacation. Day 13: Hurtigruten MS Kong Harald Norwegian Coastal Voyage Southbound (Trondheim to Molde).

On the fifth day of the southbound Hurtigruten voyage the ship only made three stops: Trondheim (06:30-10:00); Kristiansund (16:30-17:00); and Molde (21:00-21:30). We were able to spend a couple of early morning hours in Trondheim. I wanted to get more images of the statues and gargoyles at the Nidaros Cathedral.



Individual images in the slide show can be viewed here.

Six-Years Ago (01-February-2013) — Norway

Gone to See Norway 2013 Chasing the Northern Lights. Day 4: Hurtigruten MS Nordkapp Norwegian Coastal Voyage Northbound (Florø to Kristandsund).

In addition to transporting passengers, the Hurtigruten ships carry freight, mail, automobiles, and fresh food between several ports along the Norwegian coast. Many of these stops occur during the night, and only last for short (15 minutes to 1 hour) periods of time. The schedule for the first full day of the northbound voyage stops at the following ports: Florø (04:30-04:45); Maløy (06:45-07:30); Torvik (10:20-10:45); Ålesund (12:00-15:00); Molde (17:30-18:30); Kristandsund (22:00-23:00).

We were able to spend a bit of time for a walkabout in Ålesund. It was snowing so I didn’t have a chance to climb Mount Aksla for a view of the harbor like I did in 2007. We did hear the drone in the sky that the German TV crew was using follow us as we walked through the city. I was surprised that they would fly it with limited visibility.





Cargo stop in Molde. Image taken with a Leica X2 camera. (David J Mathre)
Cargo stop in Molde. Image taken with a Leica X2 camera. (David J Mathre)

Individual images in the slide shows can be viewed here.

Six-Years Ago (31-January-2013) — Norway

Gone to See Norway 2013 Chasing the Northern Lights. Day 3: Bergen then Embarkation on the MS Nordkapp for the Hurtigruten Northbound  Norwegian Coastal Voyage.

I rode the Fløibanen Funicular  a cable driven train that provides a ride to the top of Mount Fløyen. During the winter season, the ride is free with the Bergen card. I missed the first ride at 07:30, but was able to catch the 2nd ride at 08:00. This got me to the top of the mountain before sunrise. Even though the ticket office wasn’t open (needed to get the ticket) the Funicular operator let me in and got me the front seat. While waiting for the train about 20-30 pre-school/kindergarten age children were dropped off by their parents to ride to the top of the mountain. The kids were all wearing heavy winter coats and had backpacks. When the kids and their 3 adult guides got to the top they stopped to sing a song, and then went for a hike. It was cold at the top of the mountain, and I put on another layer before taking a panorama of Bergen at dawn. On the right side you can see the unique pink color (Belt of Venus) and the earth shadow blue underneath. The kids seemed to have disappeared into the woods. You could hear them yelling and having fun — It surprised me that they were running around in the still dark woods.

Dawn panoramic view of Bergen from Mount Fløyen. Composite of nine images taken with a Leica X2 camera (ISO 400, 24 mm, f/2.8, 1/60 sec). Raw images processed with Capture One Pro and the composite created using AutoPano Giga Pro. (David J Mathre)
Dawn panorama view of Bergen from Mount Fløyen. Composite of nine images taken with a Leica X2 camera (ISO 400, 24 mm, f/2.8, 1/60 sec). Raw images processed with Capture One Pro and the composite created using AutoPano Giga Pro. (David J Mathre)
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No Fly Zone on Mount Fløyen. Image taken with a Nikon 1 V2 camera and 10-110 mm lens. (David J Mathre)



One thing I noticed during this visit to Bergen were a number of folks sitting out at corners with cups begging for change. They did not look local, and the locals did not appear to be giving out any change. I checked out of the hotel and continued to walk around Bergen. I found the Japanese Photography shop where I went to look for some lens cleaner. They didn’t have any in stock – but went to the backroom and gave me an opened bottle for free.

Later in the afternoon, I went back to the top of Fløyen mountain to watch for the arrival of the Hurtigruten MS Nordkapp. I wondered how many of the folks watching the MS Nordkapp arrive would be riding on the Northbound voyage that evening. There were also a number runners doing a race up the mountain that afternoon. I think some were making it up the mountain faster than the Funicular (which does have several stops).


While wandering around on top of the mountain, I did find where all of the kids went running earlier that morning. There is a path going through the woods that has a number of large wooden trolls. Ultimately, the trail ends at a day school. By the time I got back to the top of the Funicular there was a long line of kids, runners, and tourists waiting to take the trip down. I was glad that they doubled the frequency of runs to handle the rush.


Twelve-Years Ago (31-January-2007) — Norway

Gone to See Norway 2007 Family Winter Vacation. Day 11: Hurtigruten MS Kong Harald Norwegian Coastal Voyage Southbound (Tromsø to Stamsund).

On the third day of the southbound Hurtigruten voyage, the ship departed Tromsø (01:30) and made seven stops: Finnsnes (04:15-04:45); Harstad (07:45-08:30); Risøyhamm (10:45-11:00); Sortland (12:30-13:00); Stokmarkenes (14:15-15:15); Svolvær (18:30-20:30); and Stamsund (22:00-22:30).

We got off the ship in Harstad and took a bus tour stopping at the Trondenes Church (northernmost medieval stone church in Norway) and the Trondenes Museum & Historical center. We then drove to Sortland where we rejoined the ship after passing over it while we crossed the Sortland bridge.

Painting at the Trondenes Museum & Historical center in Harstad. Composite of two images taken with a Nikon D2xs camera and 50 mm f/1.4 lens (ISO 200, 50 mm, f/1.4, 1/100 sec) (David J Mathre)
Painting at the Trondenes Museum & Historical center in Harstad. Composite of two images taken with a Nikon D2xs camera and 50 mm f/1.4 lens (ISO 200, 50 mm, f/1.4, 1/100 sec) (David J Mathre)



Individual images in this slide-show can be viewed here.



Individual images in this slide-show can be viewed here.



Individual images in this slide-show can be viewed here.



Individual images in this slide-show can be viewed here.

Svolvær Church at night. Image taken with a Nikon D2xs camera and 35 mm f/2 lens (ISO 400, 35 mm, f/2, 1/15 sec) (David J Mathre)
Svolvær Church at night. Image taken with a Nikon D2xs camera and 35 mm f/2 lens (ISO 400, 35 mm, f/2, 1/15 sec) (David J Mathre)
Trollfjord docked in Svolvær. Image taken with a Nikon D2xs camera and 12-24 mm f/4 lens (ISO 200, 12 mm, f/4, 1/45 sec) (David J Mathre)
Trollfjord docked in Svolvær. Image taken with a Nikon D2xs camera and 12-24 mm f/4 lens (ISO 200, 12 mm, f/4, 1/45 sec) (David J Mathre)