Thursday, 7 July 2011

International standard signs

Many years ago road signs in Britain changed, this we were told was to comply with international standards. The great thing with standards is that they are so useful everybody wants their own. Their are so many standard screwthreads that if Mr Whitworth was alive today he would turning in his grave. But only if a lathe included in his grave goods. This sign is the Norwegian version seen at Mael. The British sign is a 4-6-0 and is heading the other way. It seems strange that steam locomotives are only seen in preservation or on road signs. The sign for low flying aircraft does not depict a biplane.

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Question answered

Back in Jan 2010, I asked was this a signal box? I now have answer. As these pictures demonstrate it is in fact a weighbridge. Knowledge rarely provides answers, just changes the questions. What was weighed? It is close to the end of a stub siding so how did that affect operation? Could it be the question mark rather than the opposable thumb that separates us from other animals?

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

The Oslo sleeper train

On one of my early visits to Oslo included an "Oslo Pass". This gave free transport within the city boundaries. According to the handbook came with the pass, Movatn was the boundary station on the Gjovik line. It was free, it had to be visited. I have returned every time since. Admittedly once by chance having walked up alongside the the Akerselva and not stopping until I realised I had no idea where I was. It turned out I was not far from here. The post of the Cl 69 near Oslo was taken on the same walk. The usual half hour interval service takes a break in the early evening. I discovered on the walk by just missing the train and having an hour to wait until the next one. No hardship, it was summertime, the fish were jumping and the living was easy. This year the Oslo sleeper train took up the free path.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Spot the Difference

A good few years separate these shots. I was not intending to go to Holmenkollen this year as I had only 2 days to "do" Oslo. Short of time and the fact that the T bahn has broken a hole made getting around harder. I had decided to concentrate on the central area. What is going to like in July when the NSB stop running into the city I dread to think. However when I looking around the Vigeland Park I suddenly realised that I could not see the ski jump. The beautiful white landmark had gone. If I remember correctly, detective Harry Hole was not very complimentary about it as a ski jump, but it was just about as iconic as a structure can get. I had to go and see what had happened. Another shock at the station, alright I knew the lovely teak bodied sets are a distant, but fond memory. But the whole area has changed, it is sort of a motorway service area for skiers, complete with flyovers. I wish them well for the 2012 world championships.
The only good thing to say about the new Hollemkollen is that there is no longer dirty glass between you and the view. The pictures I used to show of the view were taken from the top of an old wooden ski jump tower just down the hill. I nearly went base over apex when I reached the bottom steps. I tripped over a sign saying the tower was unsafe to climb, I had missed it on approach

Thursday, 23 June 2011

New Order

A sign of the times is that every time I visit Norway I see a new operator and /or new motive power. My latest visit did not give me much time to study current operations. But I did break my journey to Gardermoen to spend some time at Lillestrom station. June 21st 2011.

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Looks familiar

Seen at Bodo 12th June 2010. A Cargo Link Mak diesel. Looks very much like the unsuccessful Di6.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Trains in the landscape 3

In 2003 I took a day trip from Oslo to Halden, on the border with Sweden. Relations with between the two countries has over the years been very neighbourly. This is a view from the fort. A Swedish train heading for Oslo. Lynx also served the route.

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Train in landscape

Northbound goods train at Kongsvold, July 1995. Long train, big scenery. In the days before containers took over. I am standing in one National Park and behind the train is another.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

As it was

I love Norway and the Norwegians have always been very kind and helpful. They are held in high regard for their tolerance and independence. However it is possible to throw them by doing something a bit different from the norm. I finally got to travel on the preserved narrow gauge line at Sorumsund, part of the Urskog- Holandsbanen third class railway, on third visit.When I asked if it was possible to get off at Fossum and wait for the next train, I was told"'of course" but the quizzical expression and the question "why do you want to do that?" gave me the impression that my sanity was not up to standard. My reason was that although I like preserved railways the act of preservation takes away a lot of their old character. It has to to survive. I just wanted to sit at the station, just me and view listening to the birdsong and waiting for the arrival of the train. As it was in days before it closed because not enough people used it. Try it sometime.
If you really want a hard time and your sanity questioned tell the driver of the bus you want to get off at the bottom of the hill to walk up it.

Monday, 28 March 2011

Long night

Two sleeper coaches where an all night service could last for months.

Friday, 18 March 2011

Stations ancient and modern.

There are certain places in Norway that have special appeal to me. Invariably they do not feature in guide books or have the stunning vistas. Usually they are small places that I have come across by chance and just seem to fit my mood. One of these is Mariero just outside of Stavanger. Found by aimless wandering. The contrast between old station building and the rather superior 'bus shelter 'design of the rationalised station, allied with the waterside setting, meant it went straight onto the list of places to spend a quiet hour or so in contemplation and to think nice things of the world. First found in 1997 these pictures taken June 2006.

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

On my "To do" list

June 2006, flew to Stavanger. After waiting just long enough to get sunburnt, I caught a bus to Mandel on the south coast. At Flekkefjord the timetable includes a 10 minute break at the which is next to the old railway station. One day I will hire one of those trolleys.

Saturday, 12 March 2011

Battery Power

These pictures were taken as a result the work being done to improve the Bergen line. I was staying in Oslo and wanted to travel to Myrdal to say I had travel all of the Bergen line. Early train from Oslo to Mrydal, quick walk across the platform to catch the Oslo train back, both journeys in daylight, perfect. Engineering work on the new cut off caused us to be delayed and as soon as our train cleared the points, my connection moves off before we had stopped. With several hours before the next train, what to do? Only one thing for it, a quick dash for the Flam train. It was a beautiful September day. This was 1990 the line had not been "improved" and still had a charm all of it's own. The El9s had gone, but Skd 207. 3 was still working. Happy days.

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

End of the line

Two pictures taken at Granvin, this is where the line that passed through Palmfoss used to go to. It closed in 1988. Lengths of it are used as a cycle path. As you can see signs still remain in Granvin. I missed out on traveling this line despite being in the area in 1975 and 1981. As I remember the service was not very frequent and I had other priorities at the time. Very few people can sing "no regrets" although that does not deter nearly enough people.

Monday, 7 March 2011

Dangerous things assumptions

In my last blog I drew the conclusion that Palmfoss goods yard was being closed down. To misquote Mark Twain, reports of its death are much exaggerated. I have just looked at the, Voss now, website, and there, is a photograph of Palmfoss, with tracks showing against the snow. The track plan has been simplified, but several wagons are at loading bays. I just love Norway. I have never claimed to be an expert.

Sunday, 6 March 2011


Two pictures taken at Palmfoss May 2007. My impression was that it was closed and being cleared. Palmfoss was the last piece of the Granvin branch in use. I think it was goods depot. On the southern edge of Voss, there are several rail side industries that probably use containers and the Norwegian underground road network now.

Friday, 4 March 2011

Fourth holiday

This is one of the earliest photos in my collection. I have hardly any photos from my first holidays in Norway. This one is from 1982 my fourth visit to Norway. As all holidays before this had been booked with NSB, then one of the main tour operators, rail travel was used where possible. A BM 65 at Voss. I think this must be the train that took me back to Bergen.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011


Model railway magazines list the as a place where you could find space to build your dream layout. They invariably advocate inside, I think they could be missing a trick.

Monday, 28 February 2011


I have been told I am making assumptions. So here are two more pictures showing the Floibanen. It is a funicular railway that runs from the centre of Bergen to the top of Mount Floyen. In the second picture the diagonal line of lights, seen top centre, marks the course of the railway. Nearly every tourist brochure has a picture taken from the top station. This makes it a must do destination. It is quite fun to watch the train empty, everybody rushing to have their photo taken with the city in the background. The really adventurous visit the restaurant and/or the gift shop before returning to sea level. They miss out the best bit, the marvellous walks in the hills behind Bergen.

Friday, 25 February 2011

I like the walk

It has been many years since I have used this particular railway. In fact it was long before they modernised it. I was in Bergen just before it was closed for renewal and there was a stack of rail left alongside the road. Not something you would do in my neck of the woods.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Landscape with trains

Classes 73 and 72 running through the coastal Jaeren landscape. I am walking along the dunes at the back a beautiful sandy beach. The sand is white and the sea is blue. Anybody trying to swim in the sea would soon turn the same colour. The beach is almost deserted proving, should any proof be needed, that it is not the colour scheme that make tropical beaches attractive.
I thought these would make a change from all the pictures with mountain backdrops and deep snow. Taken in June 2006.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Works train

All I know about these pictures is that they were taken at Lillehammer 0n the 11th july 1995. The loco has dozer or snow blades but the tank wagon suggests weed killing. There had been floods in the spring so perhaps it was there to help with the remedial work. Can anybody enlighten me?

Sunday, 20 February 2011


An El 13 in need of a sat-nav. Ofotbanen loco in Bergen station a long way away from the Narvik line that it usually inhabits. Seen from the bus station, I grabbed this shot before I went into the Railway station just in case. Unusually wise thinking on my part as it moved off the wall as I put the camera down. Anybody know why it was there? 22nd May 2007

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Class 92

The last picture from last years day trip. A class 92 dmu at Vaernes the station for Trondheim Airport. I had just got in from Bodo on the sleeper. 15th June 2010

Friday, 18 February 2011

Class 66

Two pictures taken on the 14th June 2010 at Bodo. Looking across the goods yard while I was walking back into Bodo I saw these and wondered what 66s were classed as in Norway. The trouble with a stupid question is that you don't always spot it in time. Sorry about the spelling one day I will find the accents.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Class 69 emu

Another picture taken while following my nose. This time I walked alongside the Akerselva and then carried on to Movatn. This is somewhere along the way. July 1999

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Skd 220

One of the things I like to do on holiday is to wander around just following my nose. This is how I finished up at Sandnes station waiting for a train back to Stavanger. Just in time to see what I took to a trip working to Stavanger goods terminal. July 1997

Monday, 14 February 2011

Type 21c

Taken at Bressingham this in May 1989. It carries the name Kong Hakon. I do not know if this was given when it came to England or if it was used in service. It was in steam for footplate rides. I cannot remember now if I learnt then or later that a fireman was killed when a boiler plug failed.

Sunday, 13 February 2011


A picture from past. Nordstrand Station June 1998. If you are an artist with the weathering brushes this is the one for you.