Thursday 29th December 2011
3 miles approx.
Østensjøvannet is a lake in Oslo. It’s a Nature Reserve with lots of birds.
Wikipedia explains the name:
Østensjøvannet (“Østensjø lake”) takes its name from Østensjø farm, situated on the lake’s east side. The name of the farm is in turn related to the lake, “Østensjø” literally meaning “east of the lake”. So in effect, the name means “The east-of-the-lake lake”.
It’s unseasonably warm in Oslo at the moment. The temperature when we left the house was a sweltering 5°C. Yes, that’s five degrees above freezing. It’s usually at least minus five or ten at this time of year, and the streets are usually covered in snow. No such luck this year. I even got away with taking my hat and gloves off.
Most of the lake was frozen, however. We saw a couple of people ice-skating, but none of the usual spectacle of lots of people just going for a casual walk across the ice.
Upon reaching the northern end of the lake, we had to go uphill. I wish I could say this was a photo of a pile of snow, but it’s actually a load of shavings from a nearby ice hockey rink.
We went through a lovely wooded area.
We descended again. It was quite misty around the southern half of the lake.
Here’s our intrepid native Norwegian, showing off his ice-walking skills.
We were also reliably informed that there was no fishing allowed. I wonder if the people around here usually go fishing in such a dramatic manner. The diagram looks so dynamic! And action-packed!
There’s a bridge at the southern end of the lake, and the heat of the traffic causes the ice to melt. That’s where all the ducks congregate. We noticed a couple of them having a fight.
On the way back we passed Østensjø farm, the aforementioned farm situated to the east of the east-of-the-lake lake.
I’ve always liked this building. The tradition of putting buildings on stilts, to keep things out of the way of predators, is known in Norwegian as a stabbur. It seems to have been translated into English as a Horreo.
You can walk round the whole perimeter of the lake in about an hour.