The first major operation for the Ju-52 was in Operation Weserübung, the attack on Denmark and Norway on 9 April 1940. German General Dietl commanded the German 3rd Mountain Division that participated in the German invasion of Norway on 9 and 10 April 1940. Most of this division was landed at Narvik by a German naval force of ten destroyers on 9 April 1940. 

British naval forces destroyed all ten destroyers that had ferried Dietl's troops to Narvik and managed to recapture the town. Dietl's mountaineers withdrew into the hills and they had to be supplied by air to continue fighting. Efforts by the Luftwaffe to reinforce and supply Dietl’s cut off forces were haphazard at best. 

Ju 52 were used to bring in supplies during the fighting around Narvik. During one of these supply's operation, aircraft of this type fliying low, were spotted by British naval units patrolling the fjord, some planes were shot down by anti-aircraft fire. The remaining planes were forced to land on a snow covered frozen lake without any ground control. On 13 April 1940, this aircraft with 10 other Ju 52, landed on the Hartvigvann-lake north of Narvik, Norway 

Because of lack of fuel and the deep snow only one Ju 52 was able to take-off from the frozen lake! Ten aircraft sank when the ice melted. Between 1983 and 1986 four of these aircraft were recovered and later restored. Three of them are still in the water and one lies very easily accessible near the eastern shore of the lake in a depth of only a few meters.

Junkers Ju 52 g4e “DB+RB” of 3./KGr.z.b.V. 102 after landing on the Hartvigvann-lake north of Narvik, Norway. This aircraft carried an Ace of Hearts emblem. Pilot was Feldwebel Kathmann and the flight engineer Feldwebel Härtelt. The name of the radio-operator is still unknown (Source: Luftwaffe im Focus - Edition No.1 2002)


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