'Fakkelmannen' ('The Torchbearer') – Oyer, Norway - Atlas Obscura

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'Fakkelmannen' ('The Torchbearer')

Oyer, Norway

This mountainside mural of a person carrying a torch was created for the 1994 Winter Olympics. 


Fakkelmannen is a huge mural that was made by chopping down trees on a side of a mountain. The mural, which was created for the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, depicts a man holding a torch in the same style as the logo used for the Olympic games.

The mountainside mural is easily visible from Hafjell Alpinsenter, a ski resort on the east side of the valley that hosted the giant slalom and slalom skiing events during the Lillehammer Olympics. Though it has been nearly three decades since the mural was created, the figure has been regularly maintained, so the figure of the torchbearer still stands out from the surrounding growth.

A little-known fact is that Fakkelmannen contains a footpath that allows you to walk all the way to the top of the head of the mural. It’s a tough walk to get to the top, but the view from up there is amazing. Every New Years’ Eve, someone walks to the top of Fakkkelmannen, in the snow, bringing fireworks. But mostly, walking up Fakkelmannen is a summer activity (and it’s also obligatory to do this hike for everyone who grows up in the nearby village of Øyer).

Know Before You Go

The beginning of the footpath may be a little difficult to find, and there are more than one way to get up there. But if you want to try it out, just ask any local or the local tourist office for directions. 

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