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Skiing in Norway at Christmas?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
My brother moved to Norway last year, and this Christmas my partner and I are planning a trip over to see him and his wife and to go skiing. They are beginner/intermediate skiers and this season have skied twice in Myrkdalen which they enjoyed. They're happy to go back there or somewhere new, but prefer to stay around the Bergen area, though my sister-in-law also just mentionned Rauland as a possibility. We've skied a fair bit but are easily pleased and don't need a huge area; this also won't be our only trip.

Any recomendations for areas to consider (or not)? I'm not sure it will be a full-on ski trip, so it would be nice to stay somewhere with a bit of life to it outside of skiing, and so that everyone has a nice/relaxing/fun time. We'll have a car and don't need to be ski-in ski-out. The idea is to get a cabin somewhere.

Answers such as: don't go, it will be miserable and dark and cold and there will be no snow also acceptable wink
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I skied in Norway once, 15 years ago straight after New Year. Yes it was dark until 9.30 or so and from 3.30 so short days. It was in Geilo which is on the train line from Bergen to Oslo (I was there last summer). Only 25km or so of piste but was nice and enough snow .
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Gämsbock, it'll be dark, and potentially miserable, and probably cold. Just like any mountains in the winter. It could also be fabulous.
Does your brother live in Bergen, or is there another reason for wanting to be close to Bergen? Rauland would be quite a trek (4-5 hour's drive I think) and places like Geilo and Hemsedal would be closer to Bergen. Voss and/or Myrkdalen are closer, and have a pretty good early season snow record (other than this season, which started very dry in Scandinavia). All of the resorts in Norway will feel small compared to the Alps, and you'll be able to ski every piste in a day if you so desire, but that doesn't mean they get boring. I can't comment on non-skiing activities at any of these places.
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@mgrolf, he lives in a bit south of Bergen on the coast and is suggesting that we fly into Bergen (unless Rauland, in which case direct to Oslo). So I think Geilo and Hemsedal are quite a long drive for him.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Did my first ever ski trip in Hemsedal in a cabin as a kid! Caught the bug big time...
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Voss looks to be a reasonable sized area. I've not skied there but we went through it twice last summer. Once on a coach on the way to a fjord trip and once on the train on the way to Oslo. Not too far at all from Bergen.

Bergen gets shedloads of precipitation so I would guess snow shouldn't be a problem although I'm guessing.

Although daylight hours are limited, in Geilo they had floodlit skiing daily too.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@Gämsbock, Geilo and Hemsedal would be around the 3.5-4.5 hour mark, possibly longer in winter. Rauland an hour or two further. All would be within 3-4 hours drive of Oslo airport.
Floodlit skiing lengthens the days but tends to be one or two lifts with a small number of runs, not the full resort. It's a very different experience, tends to be quieter and more chilled but don't expect the whole resort to be brightly lit.
Fly to Oslo (maybe more flights than Bergen), train to Voss (assuming your brother is providing the car to get to/groom the slopes) and ski Voss and/or Myrkdalen. Then start planning the return trip to sample all the touring/off piste potential Toofy Grin
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
If your trip is mainly for skiing, I would look at going after mid February as you’ll get much better skiing conditions (more snow and daylight).

If it’s a family Christmas get together then Norway is a great place to celebrate. See which places have the most snow (if any) and plan from there if you want to go skiing for the day.

The train journey is amazing (Oslo to Bergen) but avoid it at Christmas time, It is worse then the central line at rush hour.

Full 7.5 hour train trip (going the other way) can be seen here:


http://youtube.com/v/hvHK4yZNXpk
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It's more like a "see family and do a bit of skiing" type trip than dedicated to one or the other. Various work schedules mean Christmas is the only practical time for us to do it. From my brother, Hemsedal is 6h drive and Myrkdalen 4h drive. I think Rauland is a bit of a red-herring. My sister-in-law suggested it because she saw some nice cabins there and we could go from Oslo but it seems to be quite a bit smaller than Myrkdalen.

My brother skied a few times as a teenager, and despite an 18 year gap, seems to have picked up exactly where he left off. He's very keen and into it. My sister-in-law is trying to learn but is finding it harder skiing for the first time as an adult and maybe doesn't have the same inclination. I doubt she'll want to ski 8 hours a day (or even 6). I suspect night skiing will be a novelty event rather than something we spend a significant amount of time doing.

We're based in Switzerland so flights are limited - apart from Zürich to Oslo, we're looking at a connecting flight anyway. Depending on where we go, we'll either get picked up by my brother, or get a train, or get a hire car. I'm not overly concerned about trying to avoid a connection.

My slight concern is that we end up going somewhere kinda of isolated with nothing do after dark which might not be fun for a whole week. If that's the way it is in Norway we might be better off doing a shorter ski trip and combining it with a trip somewhere else.
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Is Geilo an option? On the Oslo -Bergen rail line. Went there for Xmas many years ago but to do xc skiing. There was enough for xc but plenty for the alpine as they have snow cannon cover.
Actually been twice to Geilo at xmas. Heading to Norway this Xmas again but not the Bergen direction.
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Norway will be beautiful at Christmas, it will be light enough to ski from 9am untill 4pm.
I worked in Norway and had over 6 christmases skiing. Like any ski trip conditions can vary, but I can only remember 1 xmas when the condition where icy.

With Norway you always have the option of excellent cross country if the conditions aren't great for downhill.

Rauland both good cross country and down hill. Another area near Rjukan in Gaustablikk and Kvitavatn, lots of cabins, lots of Cross country including lit loipe and the downhill is flood lit a couple of night a week. Kvitavatn has good cross country ski hire and snow shoes and gaustablikk has alpine rental.

Rjukan has the museum for the heavy water plant

Grillo is a bigger town and resort, on the Oslo Bergan train line.
There would be options for dog sledding aswell as skiing.
The train trip to Flam is always worth while.

Enjoy what ever you decide to do.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
If you like freezing cold skiing on ice in the miserable dark, then knock yourself out.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/ski/articles/norway-secret-off-piste-paradise-with-a-unique-fjord-twist/

But might be best to combine town of Bergen and skiing (short Week) for you it seems.


Remember to bring the booze - what ever you may bring into Norway do it - your family will be happy.

The north has it's own wipe - but mostly you have to entertain yourself in the cabin - if one week family is to much the short week combined with Bergen food would be a good idea.

(Or combine Voss and Myrkdalen)
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