vendredi 21 juin 2013

Viking Trip

23 of May 2013, I am on my way to Tromsø, North Norway, I am going to discover the midnight sun, 24hrs sun each day!!!
Way to travel: Hitch Hiking,
Way to sleep: Bush camping,

Tromsø, most important city of the North, access internet in Information center, no possibility to change my Australian Dollar....Get 2 maps at 1/50000, one for Kvaløya, second one for Senja to do some hiking across the country.

1st step, get out of town and reach the nearest Northern point. 2 cars later I am arriving on Kvaløya island. Let's go to the Top of the mountain and appreciate the midnight sun.
Reindeers, birds, quite few animals around, and the Sun, nearly midnight.

600 m of ascension later, I can see the sun, the sea, and another big mountain.... just on the way of the sun.....arghhhhhh!!!! 
one solution, go down and go up again..... Going down was pretty easy, just follow a stream cover of snow, running time..... then back to 500m higher.... back pack is heavy!!!!
Finally on the top with a 24hrs access to the sun!!!
 I was expecting to have the Sun at midnight, not to have the Sun all night.... It is like a sunset during all night!!!! For a viking, it is common to see that, for me : Wouahhhh!!!!! Amazing!!!!
Its a beautiful day!!! Sun is shining!!!!! ( it would be great if Peter was there singing ;)  )
 The "Night" is finished, maybe time to have some sleep. I found some shade from the mountain, it will be like darkness, or at least dark enough! Anyway that's gonna be like that for few weeks.

 One day of rain, not much to do... so time to read and stay dry in the tent. Agatha Christie, Michael Moore, no more rain... Time to pack up and on the road again ;).

Let's have a shower or bath on the way to the road.
 Freezing water from the water fall!!!
Not sure where I am going, let see where the cars are going. 3 cars later I am arriving in Sommarøy. Big hill at the end of the Island, I am going up to find a spot for watching the Sun (again) and maybe sleep.
Pretty windy on a top, I bring the backpack so high for nothing.....
Back down and try to find some water.
There are people looking at me, they invite me for a coffee, hey this is Hanna! She picked me up few hours earlier on my way to Sommarøy. She was right, this island is very beautiful.

Thanks to Hanna, Wojtek, Marzena, Beata and Marcin for the coffees,

Fresh Prawns,

Sea gull egg,
After this really nice time, I'd like to see the sun at the Northern place from this island, so go for a walk, time to meet 2 boys who want to make a fire without lighter or matches. so give a hand to collect the wood and light the fire and keep walking around and admire the sun.

 Believe me or not, that's night time..... around 01.00 am!!!

 I can hear someone calling me away, This is Beata and Marcin, they came to see the sun too, I am going to join them and have a short talk before to go fishing.

 Finally, they suggest me to come back with them to their place for a drink before I am going fishing.
Poland is good!
They offer me few drinks to discover their country of birth, Poland! What better drink than Vodka, at night with this endless Sunset.
During our conversations, we decided to cut my hair the next day. Lucky I am, Marzena is hair dresser.( on left on the pictures behind Beata).

After few drink, it was still not possible for me to sleep, so just back for a walk and maybe fishing.

When I was in Tromsø, I saw this church, whose in fact one of the latest built Cathedral.
She got her shape from Sommarøy:

 Lot of birds, wild Gus, Duck, sea bird....
Back the next evening to visit Marcin and his family, they invited me to have dinner and cut my hair.... I am scared.... I haven't seen a hairdresser for nearly 2 years.

Homemade capsicums in vinegar, gherkins, pork on BBQ and Polska Kielbasa.... That's a nice dinner!
Then it is the time for me to say good bye and be back on the road to head off the Ferry. I know it is late, maybe 10.00pm but the sun will be with me all night, so go for a walk.

 Before to leave, Beata give me a bag with some sausages, pork and capsicum for my journey.
(cheers Beata)

Bye Bye Sommarøy

Go to Senja
Still lucky, on the ferry I meet Lena whose in charge of the promotion of the tourism on Senja. So I get all the information and book I need for my new journey.
There is a music Festival next weekend!!!! That's sound pretty good, that will be my target for the next days.

 First I am going to Husøy ( Marcin told me that was a nice town in the Fjord) It is.

I took the last ferry, so I am pretty late, one car later I am at destination, I need to find some forest to camp few days. mountain around are huge and steep.
 Found the "forest", few trees on the bottom of the mountain, only flat place anyway to stay.

Dinner time, sausage, pork and capsicum cook on stone:

And water for drinking and washing.

Next, day, let go up this huge and steep mountain, lot of rocks, still some snow in valley.

Hiking in this area is bit difficult cos of the Fjord, lot of rocks and steep mountain.
After few hours walking and climbing, back to the camp and try to catch some dinner... I am not fisherman, so I do not catch anything....... back to the delicious sausages and capsicums.

Next day, time to have a walk in town, get food and send few emails.
NO COMPUTER!!!!! There is internet everywhere, but no computer... and it was not easy for me to travel with my laptop so I let it in Jessheim with Glenn and Timy.
No worries, back on the road, go to see the festival. I still have a couple of days front of me.

I'm going to spend this days fishing and have a look around Mefjordvaer. Go to the top of the hill:
Abundance of Cod and Haddock, big dinner coming:

Wacky wacky, go to cross the countryside, get food and books in the next village, Senjahopen. Coming outside of the shop I meet Anita, I explain her I am going to a music festival in the next town... She's telling me it was last weekend, the brochure is wrong!!! But she can still give me a book if I am coming to Mefjordvaer. Back to where I came
Anita introduce me with her husband Finn and their friends Ingunn and Reiner who is the organizer of this festival. They invited me for lunch. Boknafisk is served: Cod semi dried (13 days) served with bacon, potatoes, carrots, onions.
As you can see, the dish already eaten by myself, it was more important to try than to take a picture

.... Boknafisk is really good!!!

Then Anita invite me to have a look around, climb some rocks.
Nearly midnight, even if it's daylight all the time, it's still good to be around the fire and cook some sausages.
Altogether, we went admire the midnight sun on the jetty, Anita offer me to stay overnight and then learn to cook Fiskekaker (Fish cake) in the morning.

Morning is coming, sun is still there. Finn got a phone call, someone want to go to his cabin other side of the Fjord and need a lift by boat. Finn invite me to join the expedition.

Can you see the cabin?
I reckon that's a pretty good one.

Finn purpose to try to get some fish from the boat.
We are coming back with lot of Haddocks and few Cods.

That's gonna be perfect to make the fish cake with Turid, Finn's sister.
 That looks good, and that's test even better!!!
Having them for lunch, sharing some information for hiking.
Last pictures altogether, time to be back on the road, Finn and Reiner gave me some tips for hiking across Senja. Around 25km in the mountain. Let's do it! Ingunn and Reiner drive me to the starting point.

Where I come from
 Where I am going
 Lot of ice, snow, and the clouds are coming!

 I already came up the first hill, no way to come back, so let's do it!
 Climbing with backpack... I didn't want to walk to close from the lake... and now I keep going up!!!
kind of scary!!!
 No regrets, the view is amazing!

 It's early the morning, time to have a nap before to cross the river.
 Few river to cross... that's pretty wet, cold, I can even see some pieces of ice....
 25 hrs later, the track is finished, rain is coming, time to have some sleep, food and try to dry the clothes.

Thanks to Finn for your tips, this adventure had been really good and, wet...

Rain is gone! Another sunny day! I am going to Gryllefjord, but on my way I changed my mind and decided to go to Finnsnes. But Fred whose giving me a lift to Finnsnes telling me I should get the ferry at Gryllefjord. Anyway he is going to Finnsnes and then come back to Gryllfjord where he is the Mayor. I am checking the tourist information, no internet around....
So I decide to follow Fred. 
Wojtek talked about Troll on Senja, here there are.  World Guinness Record, that's the biggest Troll on Earth.
We are arriving in Gryllefjord, Fred suggest to give me a lift other side of the Fjord with his boat. It tell me there is a nice white beach other side of the hill, at 1 hr walk.
I cannot declined, so I am going to buy a 6pack to share during the boat trip.
View from the other side, on left is Gryllefjord, in front the ferry to Andenes. That's were Fred bring me, and where he will pick me up the next days around 4pm.

I have the smile mode on my camera (that mean the camera can see a smile and take a photo automatically), do not think it is easy to use..... That's one among dozens!
This is the minimum gear for a nice trip in Norway!
This time I didn't carry my backpack all the way along, just an axe and a fishing roll.
I spend my evening (maybe night) watching the Sun. before to decide to go to the top of one of this mountain.
Nearly 2 hrs to get up this mountain, over 500 m. Like usually, it looks gorgeous!

 Fred is coming, he brings few beers and his fishing gear for the cod.
 I haven't seen eagle yet, so Fred want to show me around and maybe see this famous eagle.
 Haddocks, sea birds, beers but no Eagles. It does not change the fact that this journey is excellent!
 Thanks to Fred for giving me this amazing time. Ferry is here, ready to go to Andenes

 Can you see all this "birds" coming from the ocean?
 In fact, they are big, noisy, slow and suck your blood as hell!!!! Mosquitoes per hundreds!!!!

around 2am...
Everyone tells me I am very lucky with the weather, that's true, I got sun nearly everyday for 2 weeks.
I am on top of the hill in Andenes, I do not have anymore water. there is a kind of big station on top, and few trucks from N.A.T.O. for exercices. I check around to get water, someone is inside the building and greeting me from the top. I'm asking for some water, then he welcomes me inside and offer me a Mocha. Erik is here for 4 weeks stage, studying the clouds over 90 km high with lasers installed on the roof.
From the forecast rapport, the weather will change today for few days.
 After spending the day in Andenes with lot of rain, I meet Håvard, he's giving me a lift toward South. There is more and more rain. Håvard and I are going to see an archeological viking site, Unluckily, we don't see much. Håvard invite me to come with him to his cabin near a lake. His parents join us, Kitty (Håvard's mother) is cooking salmon...I love it!
Then we go fishing, 2 trouts, 1 eel.

 Helge, Håvard's father built a tipi and prepared fire. With the rain and the wind, that's a really nice we can stay warm.
Next day is bit better about the weather, we're smocking the fishes... That's really, really good!!!!
Then, time to pack up, Håvard purpose me to drive me to Sortland. So we go, having a coffee and time to say Goodbye. See you in Asia!
The following days are quite rainy, I head south til Lofoten, first inhabitant come to see me:
 He's got a big steack with him...
 Rain is still there, it's like night after 2 weeks of Daylight.
That's wet everywhere, but I found this observatory for birds, that will do!
Best thing to do a rainy day: visit museum.
This is the Viking museum, with a house 83 m length
Slowly, the sun come back.
 Still heading South
 Some arts from a blacksmith at Sund, his specialty is the cormorant.

I am having a look around, visiting Dry fish far.

The wind is pretty cold, maybe it's gonna be better South, or even on the mainland.
 1 car later, I arrived at the port, meet some French people who invite me to have "Aperitif", Whiskey or Ricard... Of course I'm going with Ricard, so rare so far from France.
Ferry is coming, what should I do?

 I'm going around the ferry and I meet Camille, we talk a bit together and finally we're going on board.
She introduces me at dumpster diving.
 Lot of food collect from our midnight sun dumpster diving, we're gonna have a big dinner.
We spend the night talking around the ferry station, till around 3am when a big cruise ship came.
We decided to have a look inside, the crew invite us to come on board.
It would be good to hitch hike! let's ask!

Nope, back on the road, Camille and I have planned to meet tonight in Mo i Rana.

So, after few hours sleep,  We head of  Mo I Rana. She's using the coast road while I am hitch hiking along the E6.
 Few cars and one night later, time to have different trip, Camille still on the Coast road when I prefer to use the countryside.

So I am going south, and meet Michael, he is heading North to the Polar Circle when I am still heading South...

 I have been pretty easy to decide, so back to the North with his Volk Wagen T3, kitchen with fridge, bedroom.....
 I bought this morning some Whale meat, I do not like the fact people kill the whale, but this one is already dead, so let's try...
That's Tuna!!! or at least, it taste the same...
So, maybe stop killing Whale and create some Tuna Farm...
 Michael have a family cabin near Sweden in Nordli.
He invites me to stay a couple of days. We hope to see some bears.

 Nice colors, in the sky, good reflect on the water, let's have a break here and play with the camera.

No joke about Vanilla and Chocolate, I just got 2 weeks sun 24hrs/24hrs.... 
No bears, no Carigou, couple of  Moose on the road (not road kill yet), not even beavers....
Anyway we're heading Verdalsøra, his home town. We decided to drive via Sweden. Lot trees, and nice road.
This is the cabin of the Swedish King.
We spent couple of days together at his home, we went around, to visit one of the oldest church in Norway, then went to a museum. And lucky we were, there was a theater piece. Of course it was in Norwegian, but I still could appreciate it.

 After this few days together, and all the good time, time to head back South. I am going to Røros.
 Lot of old and wood houses.
 The weather was not the best in the coldest town of  Norway (they can reach -47C in winter), so I keep heading South and few trucks later and one jaguar, I am back with Timy, Glenn and Vegard.

Thanks to everyone I met during this long journey, I had a really nice time in Norway.