Week 8 : Haugland – Arctic Circle – Lofoten

Tuesday July 10 : Nesna – Haugland  (80 km) 

Tuesday’s ride from Nesna to Haugland was a long one of 80 km. It was breathtaking, not only the scenery but also the very fast descent — after an equally heavy and slow ascent — and the passage through a long, fairly dark en moist tunnel. Right before Haugland, we stopped at a panoramic viewpoint to take some more pictures. Anywhere you look or go here at the Norwegian coast, the views are equally impressive and fotoshoot-worthy…

Because the Belgian Red Devils soccer team was to play its half-final against France in the evening, we wanted to stay at a camping to watch the match. We arrived at the camping around 19:30 and found a signpost ‘CLOSED – STENGT’ at the entrance. We did not understand how this could be possible in the middle of the touristic high season. The next camping a Kilboghamn was 16 km and various steep climbs further, too far for my tired legs. So we entered the camping to ask whether we could not stay there without using the facilities, although, after three nights of camping in the wild and poor wash-ups with cold water, I longed for a warm shower. We met with the totally dejected camping owner, who told us he has had to close down his camping in the afternoon by force of a legal order. About 1,5 years ago, he had entered into a contract with a company that had very recently been taken over by an East Bloc company, and they wanted him out right away. A strange story, but the poor man was totally dispirited.

Since it was so late, we decided not to try and find a camper site, but parked on the parking of the school above the village, right at the foot of the mountain range. This was a wise decision, because we witnessed an marvellous sunset and around midnight, three mooses walked over the school’s soccer field where Els had parked the camper.

#cyclingtonorthcape #womencycling #reachoutforbubaque @ Bratland, Nordland, Norway

Wednesday July 11 : Haugland – Åsgardet: Arctic Circle (Furoy after ferry crossing)

The highlight of Wednesday’s fairly short (43 km) ride was the fact that, during the first of the two ferry crossings from Kilboghamn to Jektvik, we passed the Polar Circle. For the rest, the views and skies were again as beautiful as the previous days.

On this ferry from Kilboghamn to Jektvik (1 hour) we cross the Arctic Circle.

Thursday July 12 : Furøy – Inndyrfjellet

Thursday was a foggy day, not suitable at all for landscape pictures since all the mountain tops vanished into the haze.. The ride till the Åsgardet – Ørnes ferry and than further to Storvik was fairly easy. After Storvik tunnel there were a few steep climbs followed by a lengthy ascent to the first 3km tunnel near Inndyrfjellet peninsula.

We drove the camper a few kilometers into the peninsula via a small gravel path and stayed for the night at an open spot, with only a few sheep to keep us company.

#cyclingtonorthcape . #womencycling #reachoutforbubaque

Friday July 13 : Inndyrfjellet – Bodø  (83 km – 1310 m D+)

Fortunately the day brightened up and the mist disappeared Friday during the morning. Since I had climbed until the tunnel entrance near Inndyrfjelt the day before, the ride began with a 3-km descent through the chilly and moist tunnel.

A large part of the trajectory was overland, which implies the ascents and descents were longer as usual. Underway I saw a fox crossing the road and in the forest I noticed two mooses, at a distance of approx. 50 meters from the road. At Straumen, I crossed the impressive bridge from where the famous maelstroms could be seen.

Els had driven ahead tot Bodø to inquire about the spare part for my gear handle. She arrived there around 16:30 and the spare part was available, but the technician would only be there until six o’clock and be off on Saturday. At that time I had reached Straumen bridge and still had tot cycle another 30km along the mountainous route. Impossible to reach Bodø before 18hrs. So the technician advised Els to buy the piece and have it installed at a Sport 1 shop in the Lofoten. Bicycle gear story to be continued.

When I arrived in Bodø around 19hrs, we checked the timetable for ferries to Sørland. On Saturdays, there is only one ferry which departement at 7hrs. Quite early, so we decided to drive to the queuing line and sleep there. Fortunately, there was a sink with hot water in the toilet for handicapped persons, so I was able to wipe away the sweat from my body.

#cyclingtonorthcape #womencycling #reachoutforbubaque @ Bodø, Norway

Saturday July 14 : day of rest at Værøy island

Friday evening we camped in the waiting queue at the ferry boarding area in Bodø because the ferry to Værøy departed at 7hrs.
Our alarm clock went off at 5:30, more than time enough to get ready by 6:30, we thought, but when we were still in bed waking up, the ticket controller already told us to drive the camper into the ferry. This instruction created a moment of chaos and panic: the sleeping bags had to be taken down and stuffed into their packs, the roof had to be lowered, Bik had to go out for his basic needs before the 5-hour ferry crossing… Anyway, we made it and 10 minutes later the camper was on board.

When we arrived at Værøy, the weather had changed for the worse: the steep mountains were veiled in mist and it started drizzling. Bad luck, because this island is ideally located to film the midnight sun…

We went for a short stroll along a small sandy beach, visited the old harbour and walked to the lighthouse. On our way there, we walked by a fish processing company and saw an enormous stack of dried fish heads.

The one and only ferry to Moskene (Lofoten) on Sunday departs at 22:15, so Sunday will inevitably be a second day of rest.

#dayofrest #nocyclingday @ Værøy

Sunday July 15 : extra resting day on Værøy island + Ferry to Mosknes, Lofoten.

Walk to Værøy lighthouse

The day started out grey, windy and rainy but in the afternoon the rain stopped and we embarked on a walk to the lighthouse a few kilometers further. The small path and rocky climbs were highly enjoyable after days of circular cycling movements. The sun did her best tot break through the clouds, but did not manage, creating some very special light effects on the green mountain slopes.

#dayofresting #reachoutforbubaque @ Værøy Lighthouse

 

Ferry to Mosknes, Lofoten.

Marvellous, even in this misty weather!

 

Monday July 16 : Lofoten Ride 1 : Å – Leknes (64 km)

The morning started grey and wet, so we first visited the stockfish museum. The majority of the population is employed in de the cod fishing and processing/drying industry. We learned at the museum that the dried fish heads are being exported to Nigeria because of their high protein content.
By the time we left the museum, the weather had cleared up and we could enjoy the overwhelming scenery….

Monday July 16 : Lofoten ride 1 : Å – Leknes

Nature at the Lofoten islands is mind-boggling. Let the pics speak for themselves. And cycling is much easier than on mainland Norway. The best of both worlds!

#reachoutforbubaque #cyclingtonorthcape #womencycling #lofoten #fundraising @ Leknes I Lofoten