Travel safely in Norway

Darkness is here so we need to be careful.

Exploration is awesome and I do quite a bit by bike and hiking, which is a good exercise when carrying 10 to 20 kg on my back, and sometimes tummy.

Anyhow the most dangerous thing in Norway is not respecting nature, here at least on the West coast you can experience close to 4 seasons in a day and the weather can change quickly. You never know what can happen.

So it can be pretty smart to memorise this number if you are visiting Norway and are gonna go on mountain trips or any other trips where you will be far from people or a hospital.

113, not hard eh? and should work with whatever cellphone you have from another country. The fire brigade is 110, the Police is 112 and to reach an ambulance call 113.

I still have never had to use these number which is a great thing. But save them in your phone or memorise them, traveling in groups is always better but sometimes you can’t get people to come with you.

Before heading out it can be good to look extensively at the weather forecast and plan a little around that. Also look at the wind. Here in Norway the general rule regarding the weather is that when there is sun... it is warm (or warm enough), and when there isn’t any sun, its cold (and can be very cold). So that is why the summer is warm because the sun doesn’t go down and the winter the sun barely comes up so it is cold. but the autumn and spring you might get surprised about how cold it can get as soon as the sun starts to lower below the horizon. I always have a jacket, even during the summer because if overcast or windy or other reasons it can get pretty cold as well.

if you do not own full body wool underwear that is a great thing to have while here if you are visiting during the 3 seasons with night aka not summer. you can also get synthetic full body underwear which is great for while hiking etc. and then when you stop to set up camp I switch to wool, also being in the cold and sweaty is not a good thing. so if it is cold it can be great to have extra clothes to get out of your sweaty ones. also various types of socks along if you are camping can be helpful. and if you do not have waterproof shoes might be nice to have some dry ones available.

Having cold fingers can be horrible but if you need to get some stuff down mittens or gloves can be annoying. so go to a sportstore and see what is available and ask for advice when picking out.

Shoes, are very very very important in my mind.

I didn’t think i had weak joints until i started hiking, so having shoes with great ancle support can help a whole lot as the land is sometimes slippery or uneven and you can’t always see that. grip is also a great thing to have on them. and if they are watertight that help you relax a lot more on the trip.

The shoes Im wearing the most now are a mix of sporty and hiking shoes to have a little less shock. with great grip and Goretex material to be water resistant.

During the summer is the only time I dont take a flashlight with me, because it helps close to nothing. but other seasons have a good headlight or flashlight can be a life saver even if you didn’t plan on being out in the dark, sometimes it surprises you and have a light can help tremendously. also have a pocket knife to help out if for some reason I would need one while out. though usually gets untouched.

If you are long periods of time out in nature in the dark, taking a break from using any flashlights or screen devices can help your night vision tremendously and within a few minutes you could get a better lay of the land and if you can go 30 minutes than you will reach maximum capacity of night vision, and that in itself is rewarding and sometimes enough if you land is flat and safe to go without a light.

As far as camping having a tent helps again wind or a breeze which can help a lot to stay warm. as well keep small animals away from you. so can be smart to have even though sometimes i just use the sleeping bag which can be smart to have one that will be comfortable at freezing temperatures. and fro this region I would suggest comfortable to minus 5 celsius at least and survivable at least to -10 or -20 celcius.

Also contacting or connecting with locals can be a great way getting a feel of the land, norwegians are very proud of our nature and want others to enjoy it so they are happy to help.

A lot of people Like listening to music when they hike, at least alone. I used to but now I love hearing the sounds of nature so the iPod and headphones stay at home now. but another good reason to leave them behind is being able to hear nature know what to expect. 

For example if you need more water you might hear a stream that you dont see and if you were listening to music would have missed.

another example you might hear a weird noise down by the ground in the brushes, if possible choose another path, it could be a badger and you dont them to feel threatened as they are impossible to get off alone and will bite down the bone if they feel cornered.

there is a also a viper here in Norway that is poisonous though not deadly, but should go to the hospital to get treated right away if bitten. another reason for good boots.

Here is my packing list.

1. Hiking backpack

2. Camera bag, (and won’t bore you with all the camera gear)

3. Tent if chance of wind or being very cold. or a tarp can be good.

4. Sleeping bag (that is survivable until -20 celsius)

5. Handwarmers

6. Pocket knife

7. Food (since i make it ahead of time instead of making while camping.)

8. Some chocolate (can be good to keep up the energy)

9. Drinking water or gatorade/powerade.

10. Extra wool socks

11. Extra sport socks

12. Extra full body underwear (wool or synthetic maybe both.)

13. Scarf if I don´t have a beard at the moment.

14. Cellphone completely charged.

15. Food cooking kit.

16. Rope if Im going to dangerous edges or slippery surfaces that could be dangerous.

17. ID can always be good to have.

18. Most people bring a thin mattress though I never do.

Good to tell someone where, when and how long you will be out. 

Contact Iwan