A Short Shady Tree History…
The pub was built in 1997 by the owner Eivind Tornes, who walked ashore from a boat in Vancouver 17 yrs earlier, leaving the farm in Norway and his sailing career behind . It came only natural that he brought a backpack of “nisser and trolls” with him to decorate the pub with, plus a love for back country hiking and wildlife.
Left over Viking boats
He has taken all the wildlife photos that decorate the inside of the pub. The 500 piece wooden mural and all the carvings and decorations are all done by him.
By the entrance stands a Viking Rune Stone showing his Norwegian heritage with writing in Runes. Stroll around the pub and you will find trolls and ravens in murals and pictures throughout the pub.
With the extensive natural west coast décor and relaxed atmosphere there is something for all to enjoy. Our friendly staff will do their best to prepare both food and drinks in a way that you will feel like home.
We take pride in our unique history and culture — with a little bit of rustic Norway, right in the center of the coastal mountains of beautiful British Columbia!
If you’ve never been to Norway, you will get least get a short insight here at the Shady Tree Pub.
THE RUNE STONE
Made to order a thousand years after the Norwegian Vikings first set foot in Canada, it tells a story the same way the Vikings would have bragged about their adventures. You might want to brush up on your knowledge of Runes, Icelandic, and Norwegian dialect from Tornes before you read it but some English is also in there. Inside the entrance to the pub is a short description of this special granite rock that both the Viking gods of Odin and Thor are part of.
Did you know that 4 out of 7 days in the week comes from the name of the Vikings Gods? For example Thursday comes from the name Thor.
A rune stone is like a stone book where the Vikings would write down their adventures and stories. They where written in the lettering of “Runes” on the rocks, and many of these rocks still exist in Scandinavia, however the more common writing on wood is now perished over time.
Nisser and Trolls are all trough the pub, including in the wooden mural. From the growing up on a farm on the west coast of Norway near the town of Molde, the owner was a strong believer of these underworld creatures that would be expected to show up, especially on a dark and stormy night. As a kid in the darkness of winter, the trip to the outhouse in the barn, would be a very scary, and short adventure.
But then again you would have the friendly Nisser that would look after the cows in the barn.
How could you not believe in those when every Christmas they would eat all the porridge you set out to them?
Now are you saying that trolls do not exist? Go out by yourself in the forest on a dark and stormy night in the middle of the winter, bring no flashlight or other worldly things, and you will soon become a believer!
The Norwegian Troll Myth
More about trolls: Some trolls were believed to be giants as the mountains. In fact a lot of mountains in Norway have their names from trolls. Trolls are firmly embedded in the Norwegian language and expressions and you certainly do not want to be call a “Trollkjerring”!
They were shaggy and rough-haired, with trees and moss-like growth on their heads and noses, their noses were long and they would stir with it when cooking broth or porridge. Some even had two or three heads, some only had one eye in the middle of their foreheads. Their features differed from humans with four fingers and four toes and a long tail to boot.
The trolls lived to be hundreds of years old, but would die and turn into stone if the sun caught them. They might have looked frightening, but were actually often good natured and terribly naive, so sly peasants would successfully trick them.
Their supernatural powers consisted among others of transforming themselves, for instance into beautiful young ladies. Many hunters and farmers were such lured into the mountains and captured, but the trolls could never hide their tails, if you only could get to see them from behind you would know if the captivating creature was a troll or just a beautiful country girl.
BEARS AND BEERS
To know the west coast you must know the bears and our mountain goats. Have a good look at the red cedar frames on the photos, they are all as nature made them.
As a back country hiker and skier, it was only natural to add what Europe does not have, the great wildlife of the west coast. Many of us can just look at our crippled apple trees, to be reminded of when the bears beat us again at the timing of the ripening fruits. We are blessed with our wildlife and it is there to enjoy for all of us.
So enjoy the beers and the bears in our pub and have fun exploring them all…