Chapter 2 - History, Culture, and Backcountry Skiing in Norway and Sweden - February 17-March 1, 2019
This is the second of a six part series on Adirondack Hamlets to Huts Senior Advisor Jack Drury's trip to Norway and Sweden this past winter.
Chapter 2 - The Trip to Røros
Sunday February 17 my wife Phyliss drove me down to Saratoga Springs where we met Edie and Bennett. Bennett was playing at the Flurry Dance Festival and Edie was dancing. Edie, Bennett, and I took AMTRAK to Penn Station and then, because of our skis and luggage we decided to take a Lyft to JFK rather than the LIRR. Everything went smoothly and we checked in with two pair of skis (Bennett decided to rent skis in Sweden) and had time for some dinner before our flight. We took Norwegian Air which is worth noting, a discount airline. Great prices, very nice planes, and friendly staff but you want to read the fine print. Everything costs extra, food, checked luggage (make sure your bag is no more than 20Kg). We had arranged for checked luggage and our skis ahead of time so everything went smoothly. Our flight also went smoothly and we arrived in Oslo on time and had no trouble with customs. I did get a chuckle when I told the customs agent that I was going to Røros he said, “you’re going to the coldest community in the country.” It sounded a bit like my home town of Saranac Lake, NY, which is regularly listed on the morning news shows as the coldest community in the nation .
Getting to the train was easy as it left right from the airport. We had a somewhat lengthy layover so got both breakfast and lunch along with some postcards to mail home. The train left right on time and there was plenty of room for all our gear. We caught some shut-eye as our trip from the US to Roros was about 30 hours. On the last leg of the trip met a couple of women with which we had extended conversations. One woman had her incredibly well behaved herding dog with her. The other was from the Congo and had quite an adventure emigrating to Norway with her children. We tend to think that all the European trains run perfectly and U.S. trains are terrible but our AMTRAK train was on time while our Norwegian train broke down during the last portion of our trip to Røros. We ended up having to be towed to our station by another train. As a result we didn’t arrive until midnight and got a taxi to our Airbnb home on the edge of town and a 15 minute walk to the festival’s activities.