Thursday 20th December 2018, 1.45pm (day 2,674)
Little to add except that it was time to get out into some mountains again — even if they weren’t very high. The late December gloom never really lifted all day, but for this shot, it doesn’t matter.
Easter. A time to celebrate spring, a time of renewal and growth. A day for another few tons of grey slush to barrel out of the sky and drench and depress us all. This should be a tennis court in the park. Instead it’s a sea of crud that doesn’t even have the decency to be solid, at least then we could build a snowman.
There’s been a lot of football on here lately, I know that. There’s also been a lot of snow. I tried to avoid them both becoming themes again today, but…. not easy. Remarkably, thanks to there being a 3G artificial pitch beneath the snow, this game was played… perhaps appropriately, it was the team in white who ran out the winners (4-1). Traditionalists will admire the fact that today even saw the use of an orange ball (just visible here being carried out by the black-clad officials). But I am doubtless not the only one who is now fed up with winter 2018 and its sheer persistence.
Early flight home out of Tromsø. The first half-hour was spectacular: a panorama of seemingly endless white mountains, the tips tinted pink by the rising sun. Felt like asking for compensation from SAS as I had a rather grubby window beside my seat, but did manage to get a couple of tolerable shots. This one is impressive, first, because of the scale and prominence of the rocky towers on both peaks: measurable from the fact that the shadows cast by both are quite visible on the slopes behind (it’s clearer with the right-hand peak).
But I swear it was only later I realised how closely these resemble… well.. if you can’t see it, translate the title of the post out of Norwegian. Please tell me I’m not the only one that thinks this.
Storsteinen is the name of a 421-meter (1381 feet) summit not far outside Tromsø city centre and reachable by the Fjellheisen cable car. As far as my primitive Norwegian can establish, its name just means The Big Rock. Certainly a fine place for an excursion to pass the time on my last full day here on this particular trip — though I’m due back in about seven weeks.
Even including the picture taken on the summit of Kilimanjaro, and the ones in Moscow in January 2017, I nominate this the coldest of all the 2,386 pictures thus far. According to information on the Fjellheisen web site, it was -13ºC up there today. And I can assure you all that it felt like it.
Enough of this winter, say I! I don’t see this as a winter shot. This is the first picture of spring. If we all exert our will on the weather surely we can psychically change it. Worth a try surely.
I’m leaving the UK tomorrow, I guess it is possible there could be a shot from Manchester airport (although I’m sat there as I type this, and nothing is inspiring me thus far), but more likely is that tomorrow will see the first non-UK shot since the one in Sheremetyevo airport on 25th October (day 2,253), a run of 129 days and the second-longest such run since I started on this blog. Let’s travel, though I’m not heading anywhere warmer…
I did make it into Manchester today, and home again — unlike those stuck on the M62 last night. My train to work passed over the gridlock on the motorway somewhere around Castleton. At home in the evening there were vague signs of a thaw but as one can see from this shot, it is putative at best. At least I’m getting out of here on Sunday. To the Arctic.
Clare would like to take some credit for this photo as she claims ‘she saw it first’. Consider it inspiration then…
OK, so, we have had a bit of snow. This is Old Town, above Hebden Bridge, but most of the place looks like this at the moment. Things were functional round here but I was glad I didn’t have to schlep into Manchester…. no, those pleasures await me tomorrow, unless I can find a reason to avoid it.