A view from the bus on our way to the waterfall hike in Norway
Beauty. Majesty. Inspiration. Mountains grip and inspire me. On the Norway coast, I was most overcome with the beauty from the sea where I could stand on the deck or sit in the ship's front window space and admire for a longer time than when riding the bus or hiking.
Waterfalls between Shelf and Solitude Lakes, RMNP
Over almost twenty years of hiking in the Colorado mountains, I came to know portions of them intimately. Their familiarity never diminishes their grandeur. In those mountains, as on the Norway cruise, my photos are dominated with water. Even in the two favorite high places I may never again visit, tarns, waterfalls or lakes are an integral part of the photographs. Many people go to Norway to hike, and I suspect that there are hikes where the mountains there resemble the ones in the photos here, from the trail above Black Lake that leads to favorite high meadows and tarns to the side, and the steep hike that results in the grandeur and solitude of Shelf and Solitude Lakes above.
The hike I most wanted to take, to a Norway Glacier, was cancelled because the trail was too icy. The hike they agreed to add to accommodate those of us missing the glacier hike was to waterfalls. It was pretty, lots of flowers in the lower part of the hike, but the trail was like that of an old roadway, rather than a narrow hiking trail. It was clearly a trail meant for tourists though nearer the falls, it was steeper. It also required a two-hour bus ride each way! My Australian seat mate shared the story of her life and the bus driver, an old native man, talked constantly too. Both were interesting, but for one who cherishes moments--or minutes--of silence, it began to feel like an assault. Below: the waterfalls at trail's end, the bus in front of us (yes, there were 2!), flowers on the lower trail (the names of which I couldn't find for sure--maybe moss bell heather, all near Eikesdal, Norway.
To the left, on our way down, my Canadian friend in the red shirt--lush green and a spongy wet trail. This was near Varberg, Norway.
Here are a few more photos--two very similar to photos of the Rockies, plus the seven sisters waterfalls from the jet boat excursion we took, all in the Geiranger area, a UNESCO Heritage site. I would have preferred to hike to the lake, no option here.
Above, from the bus ride through hairpin curves reminiscent of Trail Ridge Road through RMNP, though with more green as well as the snowfields.
I leave you with a wonderful view off trail above Tromso. We arrived above tree line in a large sky ride, but had time to explore. When my friend took off trying to prove that he had the stamina (though said he couldn't hike!) to rush up the trail swinging his poles so no one could get close, I went in another direction and was mostly alone in this lovely meadow. I couldn't resist taking photos of the pink moss campion, easily found in early summer in the Rockies. We also saw it in Iceland.
It's easy to tell that I enjoyed most being where I could get out in the mountains. I also enjoyed walking around Tromso, one of the towns we had a bit of time to explore. I'll include it with my time in Bergen where we stayed an extra night before heading to Iceland.