UK’s Massive Flagship Squeezed Through Narrow Fjords for Its First-Ever Visit to Oslo

HMS Elizabeth and the Carrier Strike Group Visited Oslo 10 photos
Photo: Royal Navy
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It’s not just megayachts that have to make it through challenging narrow spaces, like Jeff Bezos’ infamous new toy. HMS Queen Elizabeth, the Royal Navy’s flagship, recently had to face not just the weather in Norway, but also the difficulties of slowly making it through the Oslo fjords.
HMS Queen Elizabeth got to visit Norway for the first time and spend three days in Oslo. The reason was Operation Achillean, a Royal Navy European security mission. As part of this mission, a task group headed by HMS Albion was headed towards the Mediterranean, while HMS Queen Elizabeth led the way for another powerful task group that arrived in the North Sea.

At 280 meters (918.6 feet) and weighing over 65,000 tons, HMS Elizabeth is one of the largest and most powerful aircraft carriers ever built for the Royal Navy.

Big enough to carry up to 40 aircraft, this massive ship boasts a four-acre (1.6 hectares) flight deck, specifically adapted for the F-35 fighter jets. According to the Royal Navy, it takes just one minute to move up to four fighter jets from the hangar to the flight deck.

Now, imagine this mammoth warship maneuvering through the Drobak Sound, which is the northernmost part of the outer Oslo fjord, only 1,000-meter (3,280 feet) wide and 11-mile-long (17.7 km).

This was part of the vessel’s journey from the Skagerrak strait that runs between the coasts of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden, to the inner Oslo fjord. According to the Royal Navy, this was one of the narrowest harbor entries ever completed by HMS Queen Elizabeth.

The warship’s mission in the North Sea began after it left Portsmouth at the beginning of this month. It was joined by other warships, as well as helicopters and F-35B Lightning jets, as part of the Carrier Strike Group.
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About the author: Otilia Drăgan
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Otilia believes that if it’s eco, green, or groundbreaking, people should know about it (especially if it's got wheels or wings). Working in online media for over five years, she's gained a deeper perspective on how people everywhere can inspire each other.
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