“Bivrost” – the shaking road to Asgard
Bivrost consists of two ancient norse words: “Biv”, which means “Shaking”, and “Rost”, which means “Road” or “Path”. It is considered to be the Viking word for describing the Northern Lights. They thought it was a magical bridge between earth and heaven.
The northern lights are a bridge – Bivrost
In Norse mythology, Bivrost is the bridge between heaven and earth; a trembling arc of the northern lights was a warning of war and the end of the world, or Armageddon for many Europeans during the Middle Ages and it is possible that Bivrost was the name for northern lights during the Viking Era. The character Snorre calls Bivrost the rainbow, but the rainbow is not characterized by the trembling movements which are described here nor by the three colors which Snorre tells of – in both cases these are more descriptive of the northern light.
The god Heimdal stood guard at the end of Bivrost. Heimdal was perhaps the Norse god for the northern lights, though this has never been definitely established.
Source: A. Brekke / D. Bakke (2000). Nordlys. Det norske samlaget 2000
The story of Bivrost:
Bivrost – the bridge between Middle-earth and Asgard, the world of the gods – is hard to find. Though it can be discerned as a shimmering rainbow in the skies. In the darkness of the Arctic winter, Bivrost can be viewed as a shaking path of colorful Northern Lights. Bivrost takes you to a realm of eternal youth, where man is welcomed at the table with the Norse gods eating delightful food and drinking the best spirits.
Suddenly, the Northern Lights will appear as a cascade of colours. It spreads over the dark sky and then, just as suddenly, it disappears. Our Viking ancestors called this Bivrost. Today we call it the Northern Lights or aurora. Only the gods know when and where it will appear!
During the cold and dark winter months, a bridge of Northern Lights can be seen on the sky. This bridge was called Bivrost by our ancestors. They viewed this as a magical path from the home of men to the dream world, Åsgård, the realms of the gods. The flames of the Northern Lights were believed to be a road from life on earth to the attractive Åsgård, home of the Gods. After death, this is where brave warriors, who met their fate in war and died with honour, can enjoy the afterlife for men.
The powerful Norse gods can ride across the bridge easily, but it is difficult for anyone else to enter Åsgård.
At the end of this shimmering Northern Lights bridge resides the god Heimdall. With excellent hearing and sight, he protects the realms of the Norse gods well. By lighting red fire in Bivrost, he can protect their home from trolls and other unwanted creatures.
To ride over Bivrost and receive eternal life among the gods in their realm is the ultimate dream for warriors. They who die during war are allowed to cross the bridge of Northern Lights and enter Åsgård where they meet Idunn, the keeper of apples from the Yggdrasil tree and granter of eternal youth.
Åsgård is ruled over by the almighty god Odin. Every day tough warriors fight big battles in Odins hall Valhall. At the end of each day they are served the best food and horns of ale and spirits served by the female valkyries.
Today, Bivrost is a bridge from a busy modern life over to the Arctic Norwegian heritage, a world of stories and myths developed over millennia by the people who have lived here in the north, our ancestors which is the result of three tribes meeting and exchanging Arctic culture.
We offer arctic myths and stories associated with the phenomenon Aurora as it has been perceived by the people in the north. Told by the three dominating tribes living under the Northern Lights; Norwegians, Sami and Kven.
We offer unique alcoholic beverages, served with cultural stories that can create the right magical atmosphere – and thus help the good Arctic host.
Bivrost is made in the main local ingredients: water from ancient Arctic glaciers that mirrors the Northern Lights from the wonderful Lyngen Alps, flavored by hand-picked local herbs that grow in the high mountains. A beverage produced with human compassion. A liquor which provides a natural flavour, balancing it with magical stories related to our national history, local culture and Arctic inheritance.