First Last Stop
Hammerfest is smaller than Tromsø, but the streets and houses seem to be more spread out across the hills surrounding the main harbour, so you could be fooled into thinking that there are more than ~7500 Norwegians living here. With every place I've visited so far it's so difficult to imagine the same locations blanketed in snow, darkness and sheer cold when I'm walking around in a t-shirt and zero concern for any potentially violent changes in the weather.
I'm currently sitting in my Airbnb waiting to set out for my ferry later this afternoon. I just found out that another artist will have to wait an extra day to get to Akkarfjord because her flight from Tromsø was cancelled for the same reason as mine. I'm glad I threw in an extra buffering day.
So with that I had all of yesterday to wander around town. There was a steep but short zig zag path snaking up from the town centre which offered a decent lookout over the harbour and across to Sørøya in the distance. I still had most of the afternoon to kill after coming back down and luxuriating in a bakery for a while (only 10nok for a coffee refill!) so I set off for another hike up to nearby Tyven (Norwegian for the thief, as it steals the sun from Hammerfest each winter). Compared to the other mountain hikes that I've attempted, this trail was miraculously well kept and easy to follow with signposts and cairns constantly pointing me in the right direction. It took around a couple of hours each way and I hung out with some grazing reindeer at the top before scrambling back down home.
In some promising news, it turns out that there IS wifi in at least part of the house at the residency. I've been warned that power may or may not shut off if too many outlets are being used simultaneously, but at the very least I'll have enough juice to edit photos and to keep this blog updated semi-regularly. I think I had anticipated some legit off grid cabin-in-the-woods experience but I guess this way I'll be inducing a lot less anxiety in family/loved ones.