Porjus


On 29 October 1944, 37 Lancaster bombers from the British air force (RAF) carried out an attack on the German battleship Tirpitz, which was anchored at Håköya outside Tromsö in northern Norway. The plane took off from the north of Scotland and was equipped with Tallboys, an extra powerful bomb whose blast was powerful enough to penetrate Tirpitz’ thick shell. The operation was called Obviate. However, the attack suffered setbacks when clouds pulled in over Haköya and made it difficult for the bombers to aim Tirpitz. 32 of the bombers dropped their Tallboys but no one hit Tirpitz. One of the bombers (Easy Elsie) was hit by German air defense and forced to make an emergency landing on Swedish territory on a mire about 7 kilometers north of Porjus in Lappland. All of the crew survived and were taken into custody by the Swedish military but were sent back to Britain in early November. Parts of the wreck were taken into custody by the Swedish military for review. In the mid-eighties, the tail was seized by the Air force museum in Linköping but was returned to the site in 1993.

Current status: Demolished with information board (2017).

Location: 67° 00'31 N, 19° 43'45 E

Get there: Car and walk.

My comment:

The wreck is located about two kilometers from the road between Porjus and Ållloluokta. After parking the car, you follow the path/leap (made in 1992) that leads to the wreck out on a marsh. The wreckage is gathered and at a barbecue area about 150 meters from the plane there is an information board. Easy Elsie was not the only plane forced to make an emergency landing in Sweden but what makes this plane tickle a little extra is its connection to Tirpitz.

Follow up in books: Zetterling, Niklas: Tirpitz: The Life and Death of Germany’s Last Super Battleship (2009).