I live on a small island on the south-eastern seaboard of Norway. It's a nice place, conveniently located only an hour and a half's drive from the capital. Although small, there are plenty of beaches and even more forest.
Like most people here I live more or less in the forest, having miles and miles of great hiking paths available as soon as I step out the door. So, in the wonderful weather yesterday I decided to visit our island's highest spot - at a whopping 78 meters above sea level.
I follow this road a couple hundred yards.
This short stretch of road is interspersed with a few summer houses.
This is deer and elk territory, and already here I saw a deer jump across the road. Mobile phone cameras are not the fastest though so I didn't get a picture. I took this one instead, which I thought made a nice motif.
I think it had been much better if the boat had been wood instead of plastic.
It is wonderful to enter the woods and hear nothing but birds calling their mates and insects buzzing about. Rays from the evening sun found their way through the treetops and created a magical haze. Some trees bear evidence of fighting a winter with heavy snow.
Another deer spotted me and ran barking into the woods, most likely warning her family about imminent threat.
When close to the top of the "mountain", if you walk a bit off the path and know where to look you can find a face carved in a tree. I think it's quite well done. It's been there for years, nobody knows who made it. Creepy.
Having reached the top you get to the mysterious heap of rocks.
This is viking country (our nearest town is over a thousand years old), and local folklore has it this heap, together with a smaller one a few meters away, is an ancient viking burial site. At least that's what I learned in school. Apparently the mountain is named after the local king Herkil, and he's the one presumed buried in the largest heap. It could also be just a large pile of rocks gathered by hikers over the years. I find the viking story much more exciting, but if this was a grave it's been plundered a long time ago.
Ah, the goal of the trip. Sit down, catch my breath, have a cup of coffee and gaze at the western vista.
Also, to the east.
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