Scandanavia travel blog

The church in Lom

City hall in Lillehammer

Inside the stave church - 1158

Church ceiling

Pedestrian street

We left Geiranger at 8:00 a.m. to the strains of the Beatles "Here Comes The Sun" which is played every day on our departure. We started up the narrow winding road with many hairpin turns. Weather is cloudy and foggy and temp is 14 degrees centigrade. The weather has definitely changed. We are leaving the fjord land and heading east over the mountains to the farmlands.On our way over the mountains it is 7 degrees c. And there still is a fair amount of snow on the peaks. The melting snow feeds the waterfalls, rivers and streams. Many of the rivers and streams a running extremely fast and are not the kind of water you would want to kayak unless you were a professional .It got as cold as 6 degrees Centigrade going over the mountains. As we descended to the farmlands there are still tall mountains on either side of the valley. The farms appears small but well groomed . All of the land is green and lush and there is always a river nearby. A lot of people are camping and many trailers and r.v.'s. Arrived in Lom around 9:45 a.m. We toured the 12th century Stave church which is wooden. Lots of carvings. The church is Christian but maintained a bit of the pagan history of the vikings like the dragons decorating the outside of the church. The dragons are used to protect the church from evil. The church also had runic inscriptions. It is constructed with wood beams and is still in use today. Church is over 850 years old but still has most of the original construction intact. We then hit a fantastic local bakery for a quick snack then left Lom at 11:45 a.m. Lom is the gateway to the Jotunheimen mountains the highest of which I over 2400 meters high. We proceeded toward Lillehammer and drove through the Gudbrandsdalen Valley is the inspiration for Ibsen's "Peer Gynt". We arrived in Lillehammer just before 1 o'clock. We went to an art gallery and then up to a pedestrian street that had many shops and restaurants. Lillehammer is the site of the 1994 winter Olympics and the Tonya Harding Nancy Kerrigan fiasco. Three days before the Olympics were to begin there was virtually no snow. Everyone was concerned that the Olympics and might not be able to be held. At the last minute is significant blizzard hit the area and the Olympics were able to proceed.

The pedestrian street was approximately six blocks long and very crowded with local shoppers. All the little sidewalk caf├ęs were full with people and during lunch, beer and a glass of wine. With the prices of everything being so high it is apparent that most Norwegians are doing well. The North Sea oil and gas has been a great benefit to the population.

We stopped for a bite and a beer. Along the way then headed back to the bus. Part of the group left for an optional tour and we were dropped off at the hotel. We were able to go to the swimming pool, hit the steam room and otherwise kickback. The Hotel was a family hotel with many children in attendance. We had a small cocktail hour and then dinner at the hotel. in the World Cup is on TV that we decided to retire for the evening

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