A summerday at Kvitneset (The White Cape)


I photographed this well known rocky islet at Kvitneset in 2006, after a summer gale. Formerly, some hundred years back or so, fishermen coming in from the sea in open boats and chased by bad weather were usually safe after rounding this skerry.

A narrow escape during a snowstorm back in 1881, was told by Lars (1862-1955), a fisherman from Brandal. At the age of 19, Lars was out fishing cod in a sunnmörsåttring with his father, Olavius, the skipper, when a storm suddenly hit: "We had to let the nets go. We set sail and sailed homeward ... The storm increased rapidly and so did the heavy sea. The boat was hit by three breakers, luckily without any damage. The snow reduced visibility almost to zero and we could not see land until we made a landfall at Kvitneset".
During that storm, which hit the west coast of Norway on March 29, 1881, all men in an other open boat from Brandal who were out fishing cod in the same region, did not return home.



This picture is preserving some fine memories of mine from a lovely day at Kvitneset in September 2003, with the
camera directed to the north-east. In the middle of the photo there is a characteristic helmet like, minor mountain
named Sukkertoppen -The Sugar Loaf. In the background, a little to the right of Sukkertoppen, you have
a diminutive glimpse of Ålesund, a city well-known for its Jugend-architecture.
The ship rounding Kvitneset is a modern herring catcher coming in from open sea.

During the WW2 occupation of Norway, the German forces established a small coastal fortress at The White Cape as a part of the so called "Atlantic wall". That fortress together with two other nearby placed fortresses, were primarly defending Breisundet - a vital sea entrance from the West to the city of Ålesund. The Germans reinforced this battery continuously during the war. In order to fullfill that task, the Germans had as well Russian prisoners of war slaving there.


Although nature indefatigable retrievs what is still left of the P.O.W camp, you can still
observe some traces - like these red bricks from the kitchen I found there.

The White Cape area is nowadays a place for visitors seeking an unusual, lonely and un-stressing place. The waters at the cape have a rich varyity of both seabird species and fish. Now and then the huge sea eagle is coming in for a rest on this special tussock, used by a great many generations of eagles.


My mother showed me the eagle tussock when I was only a young boy of five. Believe
it or not - in the early summer of 2005 - 70 years later - I found that same old tussock
flourishing with a carpet of lovely white flowers, most probably Cochleávia officinális -
a herb formerly often used by sailors as medicin preventing scurvy.


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