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Monday, 18 June 2012

Linda: a view of Alta, Norway

Larry with Opportune crew  

Interview with Rune
Rock Art
Finnmarklopet in Alta
We’re about to leave Alta after being regaled by Rune Somby, of the Opportune, a friend Mary Anne and Larry met in Cocos Keeling in the Indian Ocean, one of his crew and several friends encountered during a winter fly-in trip to Alta in March. Rune has been most generous with his time in showing us his home town and the wonderful museum with not only interior exhibits but also hundreds of 6000-year old rock carvings out on the hillside overlooking Altafjord.

Rune is a Park Ranger who knew from age 13 that he wanted to work with nature and her bounty in the freedom of the outdoors. His job is diverse and ranges from sea to mountain top. He’s often involved in research tracking wolverines, linx, bears and wolves. Establishing new reserves and, of course, enforcement rounds out his routine. Snowmobiles and ATVs can do a lot of damage anywhere if people are careless, but even more so here in the Arctic with its fragile ecosystem. Norway takes environmental protection seriously and standard fines for disregarding regulations range from 1000 to 10,000 Kroner ($160 – $1600 Cdn).

A little range time!
Rune is a man of many talents. For five years he raised his own sled dogs, then discovered racing, winning his share of lopets over the ensuing seven years. Always interested in travel, in late 2000 he laid out a plan: take a sailing course, save enough to buy a boat, then live on it and fix it up while saving for the big trip. In 2008 he took off for the Pacific and circumnavigation of the globe. For crew he put a notice on the web and several nubile and resourceful girls found him. In 2011, after three years Alta saw him once more.

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