The mountains are calling and I must go

The mountains are calling and I must go is a quote by John Muir, one of America’s most famous and influential outdoor enthusiasts. I often feel just that. The urge to be outdoors, in one with nature. It doesn't have to be the mountains (even though I love them very much!). Things like kayaking, hiking in the woods, skiing hills or just sitting in a park - they all give me bliss, energy and joy.

I grew up in Urke, surrounded by the Norwegian alps (Sunnmørsalpene) reflected in the fjord (Hjørundfjorden). Time was spent outdoors, in the weekends we hiked. Some of it I enjoyed, some of it not. As children do. I actually had to grow up, to move away to understand how much I loved it. Today I will hike in Oslo, I'll start outside of my apartment, hike to lake Nøklevann, 2-3 hours. It doesn't have to be more. This weekend we will hike in Hemsedal, a few weekends ago we hiked a real mountain - Besseggen and camped by the lake. During the winter we went skiing every possible weekend. That's the life I like!

Travelling gives me great pleasure, but I have realized that being in the nature gives me just as much and I often seek outdoor activities on my travels. Living in Norway gives so many opportunities. My goal is that every possible weekend is about doing some kind of outdoor activity. At the moment it is. That makes me very happy.

I have a tent, skiing equipment, outdoor clothes and I own half of a kayak and a bike. It helps to have stuff you need but it's just as much about seeking the nature experiences, feeling the joy of it. Buy stuff to use it, not because you think about using it. Don't make it to complicated. Define your own adventures. Be outdoors, seek the green spots, the woods, the hills, the mountains.

The mountains are calling if you are listening.

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Costa Rica: Canyoning, mountain biking, waterfall and hot springs in La Fortuna

Adventure in Costa Rica continues! And so much happened in La Fortuna. La Fortuna is a small city located in San Carlos and is home of Arenal Volcano, a volcano that erupted in 1968. The Volcano area is just perfect for outdoor activities and there was so much to do and see.

La Fortuna in itself is not really a big deal, you go there to explore nature, and we really did. During our two days there we did two mountain bike trips (or more biking on very bumpy roads). One was in the areas where people of La Fortuna lived. It was a great way to see the local life, from the schools and the small shops to the growing of Plantanes and Pine apple (largest export of Costa Rica). The other bike trip was part of our next leg of the trip towards Monteverde and was around the volcano with great lake views. We did never see the top of the volcano though, to foggy, very few people have that pleasure just visiting for a few days.  

La Fortuna also has La Catarata de la Fortuna, a waterfall that falls from a height of 70 meters and many resorts with natural hot springs temperate enough to bathe in. The waterfall was beautiful. And spending time in the hot springs with a swim in bar after a very wet day (tropical rain and canyoning) was really really nice. Being surrounded by other tourists in every activity you did was not so very nice, but it's just one of the things you have to deal with in a place like La Fortuna. We are all tourists after all... Even though I felt more like an adventurer on my travel around Costa Rica.

Anyways, the no doubt best thing I did in La Fortuna (and one of the best experiences of the trip) was canyoning in the Lost Canyon! Two hours of rappeling and walking in the Canyon was just amazing, wet and very exciting. A must do in La Fortuna! Just check out these pics of me rappeling there:



Costa Rica: Whitewater rafting at Pacuare River

The two weeks  in Costa Rica has left me with the most amazing memories. Rafting, rapelling, mountain biking, ziplining, hiking, swimming in hot springs and much much more. I'm not sure how to tell you all about it, but I'll just start at the very beginning and with one of my best memories from the trip: Whitewater rafting at Pacuare River!

The Pacuare River, or the Río Pacuare flows approximately 108 km and is located about 2-3 hours from San Jose. The rainforests that surrounds the river is home to exotic animal species such as jaguars, monkeys, ocelots, and a very large number of birds. And it is considered one of the 5 nicest rivers in the world to practice rafting. 

I travelled with Gadventures, but this part of the trip was organized and led by Rios Tropicales. We took part in their 3 day adventure, and what an adventure! The first day we rafted for 2-3 hours down the amazing river. The grading was 3-4 so there was some exciting moments, but not to scary. Just enough to keep you on the edge. During the raft we stopped along the way and went out of the boats to look at the nature, explore waterfalls, swim in the river and have lunch prepared by the guides. 

Arriving the river lodge, our home for the next two days was a very nice surprise. The place was just beautiful, nature surrounding the houses, the river passing by, very nice rooms and hammocks placed all around the place. And the staff was our very own guides, the ones that had led us down the river and brought all our luggage and all the food down the river (there was no roads, everything was brought via the river). The guides (excellent guides btw) prepared all the food: cocktail time, dinner, lunch, breakfast. Great food! 

The same guides also led the activities we did the next day. We did a hike in the rainforest to visit one of the indigenous families living there and we did ziplining through the forest. There was also time for swimming in the natural springs, showering in the waterfalls, hiking or just relaxing in the hammock watching the river pass by and read a book. The guides knew a lot about the area and both during the rafting and the hike they told us about the wildlife, about the different threes in the forest and other things we experienced on our way. 

On day three we packed the rafts and started the rafting again. For the next 2-3 hours we experienced an even more beautiful part of the river with som very exciting waves along the way. And beautiful nature to accompany it!

The three days at Pacuare was an amazing start to the Costa Rica adventure. So much excitement and so much to see and explore. Loved it!

These pictures from our raft on the river was taken by a photographer from Rios Tropicales. 

Hanging bridge by the lodge and view from my room:

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Costa Rica - I'm coming

Yes I did it, just booked a new trip - a 13 day tour in Costa Rica with Gadventures in December.

I have been thinking about travelling around christmas/new year, but been so slow on deciding. It is great being able to travel at that time, you can stay away for a while without taking to many days off work. Last year I spent new years in Tokyo and the year before I was on a trip in Vietnam and Cambodia at that time. But I have never traveled during Christmas before and that was a limit for me, I love spending Christmas at home...

But this trip was so tempting so I just did it. Leaving December 19th, going home January 1st. And just take a look at what I will be doing: Costa Rica Active Adventure. I've been on one of Gadventures active trips before, in Peru, best holiday ever. 

Can't wait! 

This is the route: