We recently returned from a fabulous week exploring Norway in a Touring Cars RV and decided to document our experience for others looking to travel this beautiful country in an RV or camper. If you’ve not read our first post, you may like to do so first. Otherwise, read on to find out about our incredible day in Lillehammer.
After waking up to this amazing view on our first morning in Norway, any sadness we felt about moving on from Iceland was well and truely gone!
Without even needing to leave our RV we got ourselves ready for the day ahead and made a move for the supermarket. After stocking up on supplies we relaxed in the carpark and made ourselves lunch – the freedom we have in the RV is amazing! Whenever we’re hungry, wet from the snow or need a toilet stop, everything’s right there. I can only imagine how convenient it would be for a family with young kids!
Watching the Ski-Jumpers
Lillehammer was used for two Olympic games and because of this is incredibly well set up for snow-sports which were to be the focus of our visit. We’d hoped to catch some ski-jumpers practicing on the massive jumps but due to high winds, it wasn’t to be. Standing beside them I have a whole new respect for those athletes – the jumps looked terrifying!
From just below the ski-jumps I spotted what looked like toboggans and with time on our side, we decided to walk up for a look. What we found proved to be, by far, the highlight of our day.
For only 180 krones each (approx NZD30 or USD20) we were given helmets, googles and free reign to race down the mountainside for an hour. It was hard to comprehend just how much speed we picked up on the big drops (or just how much damage you could do to yourself if you came off the toboggan on one!) but it sure was a lot of fun!
Who knew tobogganing could be so much fun?! Grab a ride up on the T-bar, fly down the tracks trying not to fall off and repeat! #adrenalinerush #letshaveanadventure #winterwonderland #norway #touringcarsnorway
A photo posted by Sarah & Nathan Chant ??✈️??? (@exploringkiwis) on
The T-bar would hooks onto the handlebars and pulls both the toboggan and rider up to the top of the hill, ready for another race down to the bottom. If you timed your speed properly, you could scoot all the way into the T-bar station, completing a full loop without having to get off the toboggan – too easy!
Flying over the bumps and around the turns, I don’t remember the last time we experienced such pure joy. If you do nothing else in Norway, make sure you go tobogganing!
Initially we didn’t think we’d hang around for the full hour but it proved to be so much fun that we easily filled the time and would have continued if it wasn’t for our aching muscles (those T-Bars were hard work but entirely worth it).
Though two nights in Lillehammer were suggested, we decided to move onto our next destination – that’s the beauty of being able to park anywhere to sleep of course. With our sites set on Røros and the hope of going dog sledding, we plugged our destination in and followed the instructions up into the mountains.
Late December gets dark by 4 or so and I must admit, we had reservations about heading up with looked like a fairly minor road with snow underfoot, but we trusted our navigation system and charged on… that is, until 45 minutes later when we hit a barrier signalling that the road was closed!
Fortunately there were a couple of locals who explained that that particular road is always closed in winter and though we may have made it through an alternative mountain road the following day, we wouldn’t that evening.
Feeling a little less confident in our navigation abilities, we eventually managed to reverse down the road and find a spot to turn around (honestly, the number of turns required to turn this beauty around on a narrow snowy road is beyond belief) and made our way back down the mountain.
Finding a Place to Sleep
We searched for a rest stop on the TomTom (this time a little more hesitant in blindly following its instructions) and made our way to ‘rasteplass ringedu’ for the night, not too far out of Otta.
It was a great little spot, quieter than the night before (aside from the odd train) – the airplugs that we picked up in Iceland easily fixed that though. When we were faced with longdrops that weren’t in the best of condition though, realised what a godsend it was to be self-contained with our own bathroom!
Our day was tremendous fun but also a learning curve for us. If you’re travelling Norway in the winter time, learn from our mistake and don’t trust that roads will always be open or that closures will be marked in advance – it’s not a problem but having a flexible itinerary and a positive attitude will help ensure you have an awesome trip.
We had an incredible time on the toboggan at Lillehammer too – if you’re passing through this part of Norway, allow yourself time to stop there and head up the mountain. It’s an absolute blast!