The start of this year’s Nordic Tour

It’s hard to believe that this is the sixth summer that I’ve spent in Scandinavia. Time flies! When the Tour first started, it lasted three weeks, which I thought was long at the time. However, over the years it has grown to be over three months long, and we’re thrilled to be back!

We arrived in Sweden on May 21 and met up with our Nordic Tour sponsors, Johan Wirsen, owner of Rebel Kayaks and Janusz Ko of Aquarius Kayaks. I’ll be using the Rebel Ilaga throughout the tour, and Mark will be testing Johan’s new design, the Rebel Husky.

From left, Johan, Mark, myself and Janusz.

From left, Johan, Mark, myself and Janusz.

After catching up with Johan (which is always lots of fun) we headed to Asker, Norway, the first stop on this year’s tour. We were greeted by friendly people and a calm sea.

A gorgeous day to head out onto the water.

A gorgeous day to head out onto the water.

Asker's kayak club gave us a warm welcome (notice the flags).

Asker’s kayak club gave us a warm welcome (notice the flags). We started the day with Yoga for Paddlers.

Throughout the two days we taught two full-day sessions of Simplifying the Roll.

Throughout the two days we taught two full-day sessions of Simplifying the Roll.

It was wonderful to work with people on all types of rolls.

It was wonderful to work with people on everything from first rolls to sculling rolls.

Happy rollers.

Happy rollers.

After two days of classes we had the opportunity to explore the surrounding area.

We spent an entire day exploring the Fram Museum and the Natural History Museum.

We spent an entire day exploring the Fram Museum and the Natural History Museum.

The museums were both educational and fun.

The museums were both educational and fun.

We spent a night VWVWV.

We spent a night in Rognstranda Geopark, which felt like we were at the end of the world.

The following day we went to Verdens Ende, which translates to "the end of the world."

The following day we went to Verdens Ende, which really does mean “the end of the world.”

A lighthouse at Verdens Ende.

A replica of a Vippefyr, an early type of lighthouse at Verdens Ende.

Mark and I paddled to another lighthouse, this one was located seven kilometers offshore.

Mark and I paddled to another lighthouse, this one was located seven kilometers offshore.

It was a windy day, but the journey to the lighthouse and back was spectacular.

It was a windy day, but the journey to the lighthouse and back was spectacular.

After exploring for a couple of days, we made our way to Oslo to run more classes.

Participants "simplify" their rolls.

Participants “simplify” their rolls.

In Oslo we ran three sessions of Yoga for Paddlers, two Simplifying the Roll classes and one session of "The Art of Teaching Rolling" (shown here).

In Oslo we ran three sessions of Yoga for Paddlers, two Simplifying the Roll classes and one session of “The Art of Teaching Rolling” (shown here).

More happy rollers.

More happy rollers.

And still more...

And still more…

After three wonderful days in Oslo, we slowly made our way to the west coast. Norway is having a particularly cold June, and many roads were blocked by snow. Despite avoiding the snow as much as possible, we still got to enjoy some, even on the lower crossings.

We enjoyed a scenic drive to the west coast.

We enjoyed a scenic drive to the west coast.

Despite being beautiful, I was glad that we weren't teaching rolling in this lake.

Despite being beautiful, I was glad that we weren’t teaching rolling in this lake.

Special thanks to Jan, Joan, Einar and Inge for taking such good care of us in Asker and Oslo!

Photos by Mark and Helen.

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