The Current

Winter-hating Canadians could learn from Norway's love of the season

Winter is coming. How does that make you feel? It could depend on which Northern country you call home. Canadians love to hate the snowy season but not so our Nordic neighbours. Today we hear why Norwegians love winter, and perhaps even get some lessons to help us endure it.
Winter in Norway on south beach of Tromso island near North Cape. Winter-hating Canadians might want to take on a positive attitude to help embrace the blustery season just like Norwegians, who look forward winter. (Moyan Brenn Follow/Flickr cc)

Many Canadians greet winter with a cold shoulder...  but Norwegians seem to love the months of cold and ice and snow.

A message from Knut Hansvold in Tromso, Norway

7 years ago
Duration 0:17
Norwegians love winter. They embrace the season with a longing for the beauty and warm feelings it brings. Knut Hansvold, in Tromso, Norway is happy winter is here.

Today, with Canadian winter looming on the horizon, Kari Leibowitz says we could learn a thing or two from our Nordic friends.She's PhD student at Stanford University. She spent a year in Tromso, Norway, studying positive winter attitudes. The city is as far north as Tuktoyaktuk in the Northwest Territories.  For two months of the winter the sun never quite makes it over the horizon.

Some people change their tires in winter. Researcher Kari Leibowitz says we should change our mindset. (Camilla/Flickr cc)

In Winnipeg, Liz Wreford is trying to bring some of that Scandinavian attitude toward winter to Canada. Her landscape architecture firm, Plain Projects, built a warming hut called Hygge House - hygge means cozy in Danish. 

In winter, the hut sits on the Red River trail, a six-kilometer long skating rink.

Hygge House is a collaboration between Pike Projects, URBANINK, and Plain Projects. In winter, the hut sits on the Red River trail, a six-kilometer long skating rink in Winnipeg. (

No matter where you are in this country, one thing is for sure -- Winter is coming.  And as it does every year, Winter divides Canadians into two camps: those who can't wait for winter... and those who can't wait for it to be over once again. 

The winter lovers and haters are like fire and ice. Today we thought we'd pit them together in a seasonal battle royale.

They may even change your mind.

Representing the winter-hating among us is Peter White.  He is a comedian based in Canada's deep south... the city of Toronto.

And from Canada's North, to bring some winter love, is a man whose official title is the Snow King of Yellowknife... Anthony Foliot.   

We want to hear your odes to winter... or diatribes against it. And send us your best pictures making the most of winter... or outfoxing Old Man Winter.

Send us your stories or photos. Use the hashtag #winterCBC on Twitter.  We're @TheCurrentCBC.  We're also on Facebook and you can send us an email here.

This segment was produced by The Current's Karin Marley, Ines Colabrese and Ing Wong-Ward.  

Check out these great pictures from listeners:

Josy Britton loves winter because it takes a dead looking landscape and makes it magical. Here is one of her paintings inspired by winter.

Helen Eggert's daughter playing outside at the lake in Sudbury, Ontario.