Wednesday 24 August 2022

Thirty years ago, a walk along the mountains of Norway and Sweden, plus a brief initial look at Andrew Terrill's On Sacred Ground

I'm currently reading the second volume of Andrew Terrill's account of his extraordinary walk from the toe of Italy to the Arctic Ocean, having been granted a prepublication review copy. On Sacred Ground covers the journey from the Alps through Germany and Denmark to Norway and the North Cape.Like the first book, The Earth Beneath My Feet (which I reviewed here and here), it's enthralling and life-affirming, a great adventure story with more depth than most such books. I'll be reviewing it for The Great Outdoors. The publication date is October 1 and it can be ordered from Amazon.

One of the finest camps on my walk. In the Jotunheimen, Norway

I'm just over half way through On Sacred Ground and Andrew has just started up Norway, in mid-April when there is still much snow, the thaw is underway, and the going, to put it midly, is difficult. This is the first section of his long walk when Andrew is in an area I know, and indeed on a walk similar to one I had undertaken six years earlier than his. In 1992 I walked south to north through the mountains of Norway and Sweden, a journey of 2200km (1400 miles) that took me four and a half months. Andrew took a much more meandering route, staying in Norway throughout, and walked over 4,000km (2500 miles), taking six months to do so. He began at the end of one winter and finished as the next one began. My walk was in summer and so much easier.

Another fine camp. Lakavatnet, Central Norway

Reading Andrerw's story had me thinking about my walk and how much I want to return to the Scandinavian Mountains, especially in the north. There are plans! I only ever wrote one article about that walk - there was little interest in the area, something I've never understood - and so far I've failed to find a copy. I have however some photos of the walk, both colour and B&W. My filing system, if it can be graced with that name, was awful and many of the pictures are not captioned or dated. I curse myself! It's so much easier with digital but this of course was in film days. 

Somewhere on the Hardangervidda, Norway. I think!

My next post will feature some of the B&W images from the walk.

This is somewhere along the Kungsleden long-distance path in Sweden

Photographic note: My camera equipment consisted of two Nikon SLR bodies, 24mm, 28-70mm and 70-210mm Nikon lenses, and a tripod. With cases it weighed 3.9kg/8.6lbs, which seems an awful lot today. My films were Fujichrome 50 & 100 colour transparency and Ilford FP4 B&W. The transparancies were photographed with my Sony NEX 7 and Sony 35mm F1.8 lens and the raw files processed in DxO PureRaw and Lightroom. 

In the Jotuheimen, Norway. I think.


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