Tag Archives: hiking

More November Highlights

November is already gone – hard to believe! We are almost three weeks into our nine week visit – and we have been BUSY! In addition to multiple Thanksgiving meals (and WAY too much food) we…

  • Helped decorate for Christmas
  • Had amazing pizza in Atlanta
  • Visit the Atlanta Botanical Garden Christmas light display
  • Enjoyed two open house events
  • Had a visit from Sasha
  • Found several cool walking trails
  • Celebrated Jenn’s 40th
  • Celebrated Zack’s dad’s birthday
  • Checked out a coffee shop in Atlanta
  • Went on a boat ride (yes, in November!)
  • Went fishing
  • Ate Mexican food… several times
  • Spent the night several times with grandparents, great-grandparents, and lots of aunts, uncles and cousins













How High?!?!

It really is a shame how little we have seen of this beautiful country after 2 1/2 years here.


We did manage to expand our horizons this past weekend. We have now explored a good bit more of at least the southern part of the country.


As we made our way to Stavanger last Friday, we stopped about an hour outside of the city to experience one of the more iconic hikes in the area.



Preikestolen – or Pulpit Rock – is something I’d seen in pictures before moving here. But pictures pale in comparison to the reality.



Standing nearly 2000 feet / 600 meters above the Lysefjord, this rock formation is impressive… and a bit scary!
Preikestolen / Pulpit Rock

It took us just under 2 hours to make the walk to the top. And it was amazing.


We highly recommend this hike!


Here is a video from our weekend in Stavanger. The first 6-7 minutes will give you a glimpse of our Preikestolen experience.

Tips for Preikestolen:

  • Wear good shoes. While the path is fairly wide, it is also very rocky. Careful measures have been taken to ensure that all the foot traffic (200,000+ visitors annually) don’t destroy the area.
  • Take water with you. And pack a lunch. There is no hytte/kiosk/snack bar at the top. We took a couple of Camelback-style backpacks, several packs of nuts, and sandwiches. There are quite a few spots along the way where you can stop and rest when needed.
  • Start early, or start later in the day. Mid-day hikes mean more traffic, and more of a queue. We arrived just after 2:00 and the majority of the traffic we encountered was from people descending the mountain. We also went on a weekday, thinking that weekends might be more crowded.
  • Most of the websites suggest hiking from April to October. Otherwise, you might encounter some additional weather challenges.
  • You can read more on Visit Norway’s Preikestolen page.

A snake? Stop it.

Are you familiar with Bill Engvall? I remember a part of his standup where he talked about people’s reactions to snakes. Rarely calm or dignified.

I can vouch for that.
I also remember the boys doing research on Norway before we moved here. One thing in particular that they wanted to learn about was whether or not there were snakes in Norway.
I can now answer that definitively. And affirmatively.
Sunday afternoon, following our time with friends on the beach, we decided to go for a family walk at Folehavna (the end of west peninsula in Sandefjord, and the site of a WWII battery). We’d been walking for quite a while, and Daniel and I were winding through some narrow corridors of one of the old firing ranges. The wall to our right at this point was just below Daniel’s eye level. Zack and William were walking on top of the range, just above us. And suddenly, Daniel saw something moving to his right. Zack realized what it was and told us to turn around.And you bet we did! No time for pictures or anything. This dude was HUGE, and Zack was fairly certain it was the one bad species we have here.

But was he right? We only had to wait until the next day, as we hiked at Tønsberg Tønne. This time around, it was the same type, but much smaller, and on a walkway ahead of us. Zack had enough time to snap a couple of photos.


I do not like snakes. And I hope we don’t see any more!

FYI – we confirmed that it is NOT one you want to encounter. Vipera berus is now on my [very, very short] list of things that I do not like about Norway!

Tønsberg Tønne

The Tønsberg Tønne (translated Tønsberg Barrel) is a an old beacon at the tip of Tønsberg Fjord in Sandefjord. We went there Sunday morning for a hike with friends. The weather was overcast and around 6 C (43 F): good hiking weather! It really is a great hiking spot and the weather cooperated well… until we got to the very top where the beacon (?) is. The wind was whipping so hard! It would almost knock us over. On our way back, we stopped on the beach and grilled our lunch.By the way, do you notice anything in the pictures? Yeah, our snow is almost completely gone and it’s still February!