Best of 2016, part 1

Best of 2016, part 1

As the snow falls the members of the knee club (tm) go into hibernation, intensive rehab or bury themselves in work. After trying out all the above I settled for the moment on resting on old laurels and going through whatever production I managed in 2016.

To avoid picture overload this will be a two part affair, with 18 pics in each. As a coincidence, the grand total of 36 frames exactly corresponds to a roll of 135mm film, for those who are old enough to remember one of those. It also corresponds to 3% of my "keepers" this year.

One of those perfect early January days. Clear, cold and nothing but a faint orange light on the southern horison. Gustav and Linnea enjoying the simultaneous sunrise/sunset on Stormheimfjellet.

A (very) dark afternoon in late January. A quick lap on Axelkollen with this view over the city lights on the other side of the fjord.

It was mid May and I start walking short distances again after breaking my leg. It was a tough spring for me, but it would have been immeasurably worse if it was not for Andrea taking care of me and above all keeping my spirits up, thank you!

June. Finally back on the bike, out seeing new places and getting some real inspiration. This is a previously unpublished one from the top of Linken. There is something about industrial buildings on top of mountains that intrigue me, their ugliness and solitude is weirdly inspiring.

Early summer came with a heat wave. And I was lucky enough to be able to enjoy it on the bike and behind the camera.

Snowline kept creeping higher and higher, and all of a sudden we had dusty alpine trails to ride.

My newly reacquired mobility also gave me access to vantage points that had been off limits for a long time. In combination with treating myself to a longer lens all the old views felt new and fresh again. Early summer is a fantastic time to be up here, when the snow is still melting. Here is Tromsdalstinden and Hamperokken in the distance, shot from Finlandsfjellet (on a ride, of course).

With the evenings getting very long indeed, afternoon rides sometimes got finished off with an ocean swim. At this particular moment the tide was low so we had to walk through a long stretch of sandy mud and sea weed before we reached open water. Due to my wonky knee I was way slower than Kenneth and Kjersti, but the upside of being left behind was that I got the chance to grab this shot.

As June turned into July, the weather tuned more and more moody. In a way it was expected, we live in the arctic after all. I think Andreas posture walking on the beach sums it up pretty well.

The moody weather has its upsides too. Those clouds can spice up what would normally be an already pretty dramatic view, such as on this shot from Smörstabben, on a ride with the guys from work. Jonas and Chris are probably discussing one of this summer's most common issues, "how much time do we have before the weather comes in?"

A similar situation on Blåtind, time to get the rain jackets out.

This one is from the same day as the one above, and a very untypical shot for me. Maybe that's why it has stuck with me even if there are no bikers and almost no mountains in it. There is just something in that gentle decay that gets me.

This is the only picture in this set that is not taken in Norway. We took a trip to Kiruna to sort out som banking stuff and whatnot, and stopped along the way and rode up Kärkevagge. It was years since I was there last, and it's a cracker of a trail. The weather was unseasonably cold even for this part of the world, down in single figures for sure. And it was wet. It felt great to share this trail from my past with Andrea, the wetness and misery just making it even more memorable.

Back in Tromsø and the rain kept falling. We were both off work and had little else to do than packing our things to move house and blow off steam on wet trails. With a broken down car we were confined to our immediate surroundings, which might not be as bad as it sounds. It forced us to explore all the nooks and crannies of our backyard, for example this seldom ridden but very nice rocky trail.

Finally we got a bluebird day, and we took full advantage by doing a big traverse over the mountains behind our house. In the background is a side of Tromsdalstinden, the mountain that dominates Tromsø, that I had never seen before. It was a great adventure and a big day out, and we came away with some great shots too. As is usually the case with these kind of rides, not all riding was great, or even rideable, so chances are high that these are the only pics I will ever get from this angle.

As July was almost turning into August the weather finally turned too. We were having a late post-ride dinner in the sun and figured it was finally time to get some midnight sun shots done. Two hours later we were at the top of the mountain basking in the last rays of the day, and the first rays of the next. The light gets quite special since it comes from north, and all north faces like Bentsjordtinden in this picture light up in gentle orange glow, a world away from the damp and cold that had reigned supreme just a few days before.