40,000 steps from Frognerseteren

On day one of our trip to Oslo we hiked around Nordmarka — a forest in the Northern region. Our starting point was Frognerseteren (1539ft) and from here we walked 40,000 steps/20 miles through snow covered pine forest and frozen lakes, all the way down into Oslo centre (17ft). It was amazing…

That morning we caught the metro from Nationaltheatret all the way up to Frognerseteren at the end of the line. Only a handful of people got off the train at the top and they took their skis in another direction. We had the forest to ourselves! Yes!!

Forest covered in snow

Frognerseteren in the mist

Everything was draped in cold mist, the air was sharp and the forest was silent. Heaven! I say silent but I think stark cold definitely has a sound but I can’t really explain it, does anyone else know what I mean? I’ve barely edited these photos because I want you to see exactly what we did.

Mist in snowy forest

Snow covered hiking track

Snow at the side of the tracks was shin deep so we couldn’t venture too close to the trees — although it was amusing to watch Scott’s reactions to suddenly dropping into deep snow with one leg 🙂

Snowy slope

Animal tracks in the snow

Sunny forest trail

Spruce against sky

Frogneseteren path

Forest trail sign

After walking the Frognerseteren path for a while we switched onto Sognsvann and followed it down to Sognsvann lake. Both of us envisioned a vast lake full of water but when we arrived it was completely frozen! A gobsmacking 3300m of ice! This shows you how cold it was.

Frozen lake

Sognsvann Lake

Snow covered lake

Sognsvann Lake

From here we headed down to the residential area in the Sogn district and gawked at the painted wooden houses (cue escapist fantasies about living in Norway) while we made our way to the Akerselva river — which lead us all the way up to the Maridalsvannet lake.

Red wooden house

Frozen lake

Maridalsvannet Lake

Again, completely frozen! This lake wasn’t as scenic as the last but we spotted a bench and decided it was a good time to stop for lunch and rest our weary feet. Cheese, garlic sauce and salad sandwich; tasted all the more amazing for being eaten outdoors in the snow. We always take lunch with us when we go hiking because although cafes are occasionally marked en route, there’s no guarantee they will be open — especially as we normally holiday out of season.

Sandwich in hand

River with snow

Akerselva river path

Fed and watered we were back on our feet and followed the Akerselva river all the way down into the centre of Oslo. The photo below is where the water flowing from Maridalsvannet Lake meets the centre of the city. Not all parts of our journey back were as beautiful as where we’d just been — how can anything compete with a snow covered forest? But it was nice to see the whole city and I’m sure the more urban parts of the river walk look fantastic during Spring and Summer when everything is green again.

Waterfall in city

Waterfall at Grünerlokka

Orange juice and chocolate

Celebratory snacks

Back at our apartment we celebrated our gargantuan hike with much needed sweet drinks and chocolate. We saw some unforgettable sights that day and I’m amazed at how far we walked through snow, ice and on concrete. Thank you body, you served me well! I’m sorry I ever thought your nose was a stupid shape.

If you’ve stumbled upon this post because you are planning to go hiking in Oslo, I hope you’ve found it useful. I just wanted to add that there is a coffee shack and a toilet by Sognsvann metro station (T-bane) and also a portaloo not far from Frognerseteren station. Ladies, pack some tissue as there was a lack of loo paper!

** Also check out our favourite restaurants in Oslo.

4 Comments

  1. This beautiful post has strengthened my resolve to go back to Oslo when there’s snow on the ground again! I know what you mean about the sound of stark cold. Maybe it’s just the sound of your body reacting to the chill! Thanks for sharing it with me 🙂

    • Nordmarka is a beautiful place when there’s snow on the ground. Now I’ve seen your post I want to go back and see a greener Oslo! Yes, maybe it’s the cold air whipping around your ears… 🙂

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