The Scenery of the North

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Image: The scenery along Highway 891 on the way to Berlevag, Norway, Nikon D750, Nikkor 24-70 mm at 24 mm, f/16, 1/125, ISO 1000, hand-held

The drive up through the center of the Varanger Peninsula had vast changes in scenery. We went from birch trees covering rolling hills and low lying mountains to treeless arctic tundra and occasional low lying shrubbery.  The first time we visited this region, we took the highway to the right at the Gednje junction and visited Batsfjord. 

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Batsfjord is a small fishing town whose prominence has declined according to one restaurant server. We saw many gulls but we weren’t able to find the shorebirds that the area was known for so we had a quick lunch and headed back south.


Image: Batsfjord, Norway, iPhone 7 Plus, hand-held

The landscape to and from Batsfjord still reflected winter with many snowfields covering the land. Glacial lakes dotted the rolling hills and we could see the snow melting, forming little streams.

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Image: The scenery along Highway 890 on the way to Batsfjord, Norway, Nikon D750, Nikkor 24-70 mm at 70 mm, f/13, 1/250, ISO 400, hand-held

I loved the colors of the lakes and decided to get a little creative. I used the Nikkor 200-500 mm long lens to zoom in on the floating ice in this lake.

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Image: Ice in a lake along Highway 890 on the way to Batsfjord, Norway, Nikon D500, Nikkor 200-500 mm at 700 mm with a 1.4 x teleconverter, f/8, 1/1000, ISO 800, hand-held

The second trip up through central Varanger Peninsula led us to the left at Gednje to Kongsfjord and then to Berlevag farther north. The scenery was similar to our trip a couple weeks ago on the eastern side of the Varanger Peninsula with jagged rocks coming out of the ground, but the green tundra appeared more vibrant on this side of the peninsula.

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Image: The scenery along Highway 891 on the way to Berlevag, Norway, Nikon D750, Nikkor 24-70 mm at 60 mm, f/11, 1/125, ISO 640, hand-held

In Berlevag, another fishing town, we saw a fishing boat come into harbor with a swarm of gulls flying about. They had learned that they would soon get some fish scraps from the fisherman after processing the day’s catch.

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Image: A fishing boat comes into Berlevag harbor, Norway, Nikon D500, Nikkor 200-500 mm at 500 mm, f/6.3, 1/1250, ISO 500, hand-held

It was a fun activity, capturing the gulls diving into the water to eat fish scraps.

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Image: Herring gull diving for fish scraps in Berlevag, Norway, Nikon D500, Nikkor 200-500 mm at 220 mm, f/6.3, 1/1600, ISO 1600, hand-held

We also saw some Kittiwake gulls nesting on window sills of many of the town’s buildings.  The chicks for many of these gulls were much bigger. Some were even beginning to practice flapping their wings.

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Image: Kittiwake gull and chicks nesting on a windowsill in Berlevag, Norway, Nikon D500, Nikkor 200-500 mm at 500 mm, f/6.3, 1/640, ISO 1000, hand-held

We are now preparing to leave Norway for a few days in Finland.  I will hold this country dear in my heart, as I have enjoyed the kindness of the people in this region and have been awestruck by the beauty of the land and wildlife.

Author: Dr. Amy Novotny

Amy Novotny is a physical therapist, marathon/ultra runner and nature photographer. She treats patients for a variety of conditions but specializes in chronic pain and calming an overactive nervous system using special diaphragmatic breathing. She has used this technique to help her qualify and run in four Boston marathons! She enjoys the outdoors and can often be found running and hiking on trails in throughout Arizona. She attempts to capture the beauty of nature with her photography both locally in Arizona and also throughout the United States. She is becoming more interested in wildlife photography and attempting to capture the emotion of animal interactions. In her spare time, Amy volunteers as a photo guide for the Arizona Highways PhotoScapes nonprofit and shares her joy of nature with others. Please feel free to contact her regarding her photography, physical therapy or running.

14 thoughts on “The Scenery of the North”

  1. I love these posts, Amy! Thanks for sharing your experiences with us!

    PS: Did you not take a tripod with you? (Just kidding!). LOL


    Liked by 1 person

    1. HAHA!! Nice Jack! Thanks for the kind words. What’s funny is that I’ve been doing so much birds in flight photography that it is much easier going hand held. Also, as you know, Artie is really into birds, not scenery, so I have 2 seconds or less to take a scenic pic. That usually means rolling down the window (1 sec) and leaning out to snap a shot (1 sec). Then we zoom off! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow, this is a super blog. I’m very jealous! I am organizing an 11 day photo tour in February to India which covers the Kumbh Mela (festival) and the Rajasthani sites as well as the Jaisalmer Desert the famous Camel Festival. It will be only $4,500. It will be similar to what Art (the other Art) Wolf does. Spread the word to any friends who might like a real adventure, yeah parts may be as rough as Mongolia but with 4 star hotels. I will send an itinerary if anyone is interested.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Jeff! I love sharing all of this information. I think it’s useful to help people decide if it’s a place they might want to visit. I love taking in all these sights and showing the beauty of these places.


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