Lake Mjøsa, Norway's largest lake, extends for 100km/60mi through a fertile region from Eidsvoll in the south to Lillehammer in the north. With a width of up to 15km/9mi, it has an area of 362sq.km/140sq.mi - slightly less than Lake Garda in northern Italy - and is up to 443m/1,450ft deep. The lake is well stocked with trout.
Address: Grønnegaten 11, N-2317 Hamar, Norway
Lake Mjøsa is reached from Oslo on E 6. From the little town of Eidsvoll, on the right bank of the wide, clear river Vorma, there is a boat service up the lake to Lillehammer from mid-June to mid-August.The current constitution of Norway was originally adopted in 1814 in the town of Eidsvoll.
A trip up Lake Mjøsa, in the oldest paddle-steamer in the world still in service (1856), takes about six hours, with calls at the main places on the lake.
Beyond Minnesund, E 6 crosses the river Vorma at its outflow from the lake and continues along the east side of Lake Mjøsa through attractive scenery, climbing slightly.
Soon after Espa, a little place on the picturesque Korsødegårdsbugt, E 6 leaves the lake, to return to it only at Hamar. Those who want to keep close to the lake should take Road 222, which runs parallel to E 6 on the west, passing through Stange.
West of Stange is the village church, one of the two most beautiful churches in Hedmark (the other being Ringsaker), built about 1250 and remodeled in the 17th century. Between the road and the lake, sometimes directly on the lakeside, are numbers of prosperous farmhouses (storgårder), many dating from the 18th century, which bear witness to the wealth of this fertile region.
Hamar (pop. 16,000) is the chief town of Hedmark county, which lies on the north side of the Akersvik, at the mouth of the Furnesfjord, which runs north for some 15km/9mi. West of the town, on the Storhamarodde (Domkirkeodde) peninsula, are the ruins of the 12th century Cathedral of Hamar and the Hedmark Museum, with numbers of old wooden buildings (the oldest dating from 1583), an open-air theater and a restaurant. A huge glass roof is built over the Cathedral ruins to protect them against further damage from environmental influences; the structure was built with assistance from the European Community.Hamar is also known for its indoor long track speed skating arena, the Olympia Hall, which was built for the 1994 Winter Olympics.A little way north is Norway's only Railroad Museum (Jernbanemuseet), the Norwegian national railway museum. Hamar is an important railway junction between two different lines.
Elverum (alt. 188m/615ft, pop. 17,000), once a fortified town, lies 28km/17mi east of Hamar, on the Glåma. Features of interest are the Glomsdal Museum, an open-air museum (80 old peasants' houses from the prosperous Østerdal, with period furnishings), and the Norwegian Forest Museum (forestry, shooting, fishing).
Beyond Brumunddal, E 6 comes to the north end of the Furnesfjord and turns west. The highway passes Moelv, crosses to the west side of Lake Mjøsa on a bridge and continues towards Lillehammer.
On the west side of Lake Mjøsa (reached by a ferry from Mengstol) is Gjøvik (pop. 28,000), chief place in the Toten district, known as "the white town on Lake Mjøsa". From here Road 4 goes north to Lillehammer.The ice hockey games for the Lillehammer Winter Olympics in 1994 were held in the Gjøvik Olympic Hall. Gjøvik is also noted for its glassworks, which began in 1807, and still carries on the traditions today.
Kapp - Toten Museum
Balke Church, Skreia, Norway
On a peninsula to the north of Skreia, a small village (pop. 1285), is Balke church (ca. 1200; restored 1967). The road now keeps close to the shore of the lake, with the Skreia ridge of hills to the west (Skreikamp, 708m/2,323ft).
Feiring - Ironworks
From the farm of Bjørnstad a road leads north to the Feiring ironworks (Feiring Jernverk), established in 1797, with 24 buildings (stamping mill, blast furnace, etc.) which illustrate the technology of this early stage of the industry.There is an annual performance of "Men of iron ore, Girls of iron" at the Ironworks Theater.