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The stories:

Time line:

Sundau 27th of December 1942, in the evening: The sound of an aircraft was heard over Ekse and Gullbraa. A big plane with it's landing lights turnede on was seen passing sothwords. Later it turned out to be that sunday evening a German plain crashed at Kvitanosi.

many dates missing, soon to be translated, so fare only in Norwegian.

1943 - 2005:Over 62 years went on. Many a hiker has in all these years had the wreck at Kvitanosi as a favorite destination. The wreck has probably slightly decreased a little over the years because of souvenir collectors. The large surfaces on the relatively undamaged wings have become memory books with names and dates scratched onto them.

Saturday the 30th of July 2005: The local newspaper Hordaland has an article on its cover telling that the wreck will be removed. There is a museum in Berlin wanting parts of it for their restoration of an aircraft of this type. Although the military Condor model was produced in 262 copies during the ww2, no one is left now. The museum is very interested in the wings and the tail. That is what is best preserved at Kvitanosi.
This came completely unexpected. No one in the villages around in the area had heard about these planes. A helicopter should bring the wreck parts down to the village Brekkhus, for further transportation to Germany by car. The operation would probably start the coming week.

more soon to be translated, so fare only in Norwegian.

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My fathers story:

[the text in brackets are added by me]
People in Ekse and Gullbraa saw the plane passing over in low hight that evening 27th of December with course south/southeast in the direction of Voss, and with the landing lights turn on. Later it was told that the plane had been on a raid to Iceland.

Olav Gullbraa was on his way home to Gullbraa in Eksingedalen, skiing via the Naerafjellet mountain (from the Teigdalen valley, and Evanger). Which day this was I don't know. This could have been the day after the plain crashed, but most likely some days later. [On January 6th a message was received from captain Gebhard that he was on his way to Stamnes with the two survivors]. [Nils N Nesheim dates this to 31/12, four days after the crash. See his story below].
When he should pass the mountain pasture of the farm Ekse, Eksestoelen, a German came out from one of the huts there, with a pistol in his hand. This was one of the survivors [this must have been Walter Schwarze]. Olav and the German went down to Ekse together. People from Ekse and Gullbraa started to seek for more survivors in the mountains. One more vas found in a hut in Torvedalen (Ekses Torvedalen) [this must have been Fritz Albrechts, described as hardly injuried], another mountain pasture near by Eksesstoelen. Later they also found the plane and the 4 of the crew who was killed. The body of the plane was relative complete.
The path the two survivors climbed down from the place where the plane crashed was very dangerous, and only to be used for people knowing that area very well. So they were lucky to survive the climb, in addition to surviving the crash.
The bodies of the dead were brought down to Gullbraa, and further down to Nesheim by horses and sledges, one driven by "Daoe" [Nils N Nesheim is telling that this was Lars Ekse], one by Andreas. [From there the transport went by horses and sledges to Stamnes and by boat to Bergen. They are buried at the cemetery of Solheim in Bergen.] [A girl living at Nesheim told later about the sinister feeling with the dead bodies laying outside overnight, for further transportation the day after. My mother told me that story.]

People from Trefall: my father and Gunnar, and people from Ekse and Gullbraa, were ordered by the Germans to bring parts of the wreck from the mountain Kvitanosi down to Gullbraa. They used a new sledge made by Johannes Fosse, owned by Andreas, which the German saw and demanded. The parts brought down were instruments, fuel tanks with rubber surface inside preventing fuel leakage if a bullet went through, and other "confidential" things, rumors talked about later by the people in the valley. These wreck parts were also transported to Nesheim for further transportation to Stamnes and Bergen.
The Germans wanted to take down the four motors. Trying to get down the first one on the sledge used for the purpose, failed. The sledge and the motor rushed downhill in Veslelia out of control and the sledge was smashed against some trees. Further attempt to get down the motors was abandoned. This motor was blown up soon afterwards [parts could still be seen on the place, I will locate them with GPS position the coming summer].

My father also went with the Germans on the last hike. This time they blew up the three other motors, together with some other parts of the plane. "After the explosives where strapped to motors we where ordered to seek shelter. We were hiding behind some rocks. It rained with metal pieces all over the place, but luckily no one were hurt".

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Nils N Nesheim's story: The crash at Kvitanosi 27-12-1942 written down as I remember it:

27/12: The traditional Christmas celebration in the School of Ekse. A continuing sound of an aero plane. 1 hour - maybe 2. It sounds like circling over the area. Suddenly the sound was gone. We wandered maybe a little what this could have been, but soon forgot it.

31/12: Olav Gullbraa, the responsible at Evanger PowerStation, was on his way home to the farm Gullbraa in the valley of Eksingedalen to celebrate the New Years Eve with his family. He was skiing the short trail over the mountain Oevrafjellet. Passing Nils Ekse's hut in the mountain pasture Eksestoelen, he saw some footprints in the snow. A German solider was coming out of the hut with a pistol in his hand.

1/1-1943: People from the farms Ekse and Gullbraa are searching in the mountains for one more German survivor from the crash. He was found in a hut in the mountain pasture Torvedalen. He was transported down to Ekse by partly carrying him, partly pulling him on a parachute he had brought from the plane. On the traditional New Years celebration on the farm Brakestad the news was spread among the locals.

3/1 (Sunday): Norvald, Gunnar and I where on our way to the mountain of Kvitanosi skiing. In Dyratoni we found wreck parts. We had to turn back home because of bad weather, skiing the shortest trail down Kvitestakken to Brakestad. Just after Brakestad, in Brakestadlia, we met a German patrol led by the Norwegian police sergeant for the area Albert Sortevik. They where heading for Ekse where the survivors stayed. Coming to Nesheim we found Nils N Nesheim's house "occupied" by 10-12 German soldiers. They had a young man from the farm Brekkhus in the valley of Teigdalen as a guide.

4/1. Gunnar and I where ordered, together with one German soldier, to go to Brekkhus for different equipment and supplies. Two locals from Brekkhus had to follow us on the way back to carry all the equipment. Stayed overnight at Nesheim.

5/1: To Gullbraa with the supplies. There was waiting an order to continue to the mountain of Kvitanosi. Arriving the plain, the Germans with help from some locals where working trying to get the dead out of the wreck. It was a difficult job, and the only tools they had available were some axes and crowbars. At last we get the dead out of the wreck and placed them on tow sledges, two on each. On the way down to Gullbraa we had to walk on our foots pulling the sledges with the dead. Four Germans and four Norwegians on each sledge. Marching one hour, then resting in ten minutes, continuing this way we arrived Gullbraa late in the evening. Stayed overnight at Gullbraa.

6/1: Up again to Kvitanosi to bring down different equipment from the plane. Lars Ekse and Andreas Trefall with a horse and a sledge each brought the dead Germans down to Nesheim, where the bodies were placed at Smiemyra just covered with some snow, and guarded by German soldiers overnight.

7/1: David Gullbraa and Andreas Trefall arrived again to Nesheim with horses and sledges full of equipment from the plane. Norvald and I was ordered to transport the dead further down the valley to Flatekval. Two horses with sledges, two bodies on each sledge. The Germans stayed overnight at Dalastova at Flatekval, the dead were placed in the shed. On this point my mission on the plane-crash at Kvitanosi was fulfilled.

8/1: The road in the valley of Eksingedalen was not cleared from snow during the war, so the transport of the dead continued with horses and sledges. Friday was "The Boat Day", and the boat from the city of Bergen sailed as log as it could before the ice in the fjord prevent further passing. It was told that the dead were winched and dropped on-board into the boat. The boat that day was either "DS Jonas Jeasper" or "DS Hamre".

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The crash at Kvitanosi 27/12-42 told by Nils Gullbraa (f.1929)

From the book "War in Eksingedalen 1940 - 45", issued by Vaksdal Kommune in 1995 at the 50's anniversary of the end of WW2, editor Aage Lavik. Here printed with the permission of the author and Vaksdal Kommune.

After a period with bad weather and much snow starting before Christmas, it stopped snowing at the 27th. But the clouds still stayed at 1000 m above sea level. My brother and I where waiting for our father to come home. Because of the bad weather, he could not cross the mountains skiing from Evanger. He worked at the PowerStation at Evanger.

We kids had placed the radio in the living room for the Christmas. We thought we where safe for the Germans to come and find it in this bad weather.

At 10:15 in the evening at the 27th we hear the sound of an aero plane, and ran out to turn off the light outside. Standing outside the house, we saw a big 4 engine aero plan with its landing lights turned on, passing low over the valley. When disappearing west of the mountain Kjaeringanosi, suddenly the sound stopped. Had the plane crashed?

The bad weather would not stop. The next day the clouds were even thicker, and the snow blizzard continued all of the 28th. At Tuesday the 29th the weather was better, still clouds, but possible to go up into the mountains.

In the evening our father arrived. He told that he, together with the tailor Olav Ekse, had found a German when they where passing Nils Ekse's hut at the mountain pasture Eksestoelen. They had brought him down to the valley of Eksingedalen, to Ekse. There Lars Ekse gave him shelter.

The New Year Day, 1/1 1943, it was snowing wet snow. We contacted a man from Bergen which was at "Christmas holidays" (stayed there because of the war). He knew the German language and was able to speak with the person brought down from the mountain. The German told that he had been one of the crew members at a plane which had crashed in the mountains. One other crew member also had survived, but they had been separated in the attempt to climb down when one of them rushed downhill. The other returned to the wreck after getting no answer when yelling downhill.

At Saturday 2d January the weather turned better. We started climbing up into the mountains to look for the missing plane. Five adults: Olav Gullbraa, Ingvald Gullbraa, Harald Gullbraa, Andreas Trefall, and the "translator" from Bergen. After the adults come my brother Johan, age 15, and I, age 13 1/2. We passed Kjaeringanosi skiing across the plateau Storetoni, west of the mountain hiding for the top of Kvitanosi. We followed the edge. We found footpaths in the snow of a person without skies. We continued, and after a while we found the plane. It had crashed in a slow hillside. Because of the snow, the plane was not totally crashed. The left wing had smashed into a big stone, and the plane had turned 180 degrees and stopped lying at its back. The taili, from the back up to the point where the wings started, was almost undamaged. The cockpit was smashed backwards into the the wing mount. We saw one of the pilots hanging upside down in his seatbelts.

It was getting late, so we had to return when still daylight. We went the same path back. Passing Dyratoni, we saw a person waiving from one of the huts down in the mountain pasture Torvedalen. We climbed down Dyratoni, and further down to the hut. This was the other surviving German. His jawbone was broken, and he was badly injuried. We partly carried and partly pulled him down to the valley on a parachute he had brought from the plane. He was to weak to walk himself. About at 7 hour in the evening we arrived to Ekse.

At Sunday 3d January there was a new snow blizzard.

My father and Olav Ekse, which found the first German at Eksestoelen, got later a bottle of Italian wine each for the help.

About the 15th or 16th January an alpine troop (from Austria) came. Thayr mission was to bring down the dead from the wreck. Here at Gullbraa they stayed in Nils B. Gullbraa's house. They where good skiers.

The alpine troops ordered some locals from Eksingedalen to assist them on their mission. They went to the plane skiing, and brought with them a sledge. The work was difficult, and they returned to Gullbraa late that evening.

The third day they got horses and sledges to transport the dead down the valley of Eksingedalen. David Gullgraa and Lars Ekse drove two horses with sledges, one each.

At Monday the 3d of June a new alpine troop arrived. The stayed in Nils Bergesen Gullbraa's house. I participated at two hikes to Kvitanosi, and found them to be nice people. One of them spoke Norwegian very well.

Now the plane should be emptied for all values. Some locals where ordered to assist them: Johannes Gullbraa, Herman Gullbraa, Harald Gullbraa, Ingvald Gullbraa, Haakon Trefall and Andreas Trefall.

At the first hike, my uncle Ingvald and I where ahead of the others. As we arrived the wreck, we saw two people. They asked what we where doing at the wreck site. My uncle turned and pointed back the path we came and said that a troop of Germans where on their way. Never, sooner or later, have I seen someone who jumped into their skis and skied so fast. I do not dear to think of what would happened if the Germans had seen them running away.

One day the Germans had pulled two of the engines down to Naevene. One of the engines continued on its own on its sledge down into the woods. The sledge was smashed. The landing wheels and many other parts where transported down to Gullbraa, but they gave up getting down the engines.

At Thursday the 10th of July I participated again. Now they should finish theyr mission. The rest of the parts to be transported down to the valley where collected. Then blocks of TNT where strapped onto different parts of the plane. Belts of ammunition 20.5 where placed above. We seeked shelter behind some rocks, and when the explosion come there was an inferno of metal peaces, flying and spread widely in the area.

The two remaining motors where also blown up. This Friday the 11th the Germans got all parts brought down to the valley, brought further down to Trefall to the car-road.

That evening the 11th the Germans left after completed mission.

(The dates in this story are from my father Olav Gullbraa.s diaries.)

[Added by me after a phone call with Nils Gullbraa 28/5]
Nils: The tail part was almost complete, and with a big room inside. The food the two survivors had been eating before they had to leave the plane was located there, and this was also the place they had seeked they're shelter. At the last hike I asked the person in command if they could leave this part undamaged. "I could so, but there are more of us", was the answer. The tail of the plane was also blown up.

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The plane trying to land at Kvitanosi told by Kaare Flaaskjer

From the book "War in Eksingedalen 1940 - 45", issued by Vaksdal Kommune in 1995 at the 50's anniversary of the end of WW2, editor Aage Lavik. Here printed with the permission of the author's daughter Sigrun Eng in Gol, Buskerud, and Vaksdal Kommune.

Soon to be translated. So fare only in norwegian.

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Gunnar Nesheim's story:

From the book "War in Eksingedalen 1940 - 45", issued by Vaksdal Kommune in 1995 at the 50's anniversary of the end of WW2, editor Aage Lavik. A small fragment from the book, here printed with the permission of Vaksdal Kommune.

Soon to be translated. So fare only in norwegian.

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Nils Kvamsdal's story:

Soon to be translated. So fare only in norwegian.

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A German source:

Soon to be translated. So fare only in norwegian.

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Last updated 17th of August 2019


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