Thursday 29th June – Wild camp spot 37 kms south of Trofors
Blue skies – nothing but blue skies. Not a cloud in the sky.
Travelled a long way today as there is nothing specific that we want to see.
Acre after acre, mile after mile of majestic forests with towering xmas trees on both sides of the road. Down the mountainside to the rivers, nothing but magnificent forests bordering waterways so calm they were reflecting these trees – so beautiful and then these waterways turned into raging rapids as we go downhill.
Absolutely no toll roads or ferries to catch today so a very good day.
Truly beautiful drive ending up with a campsite beside that illusive babbling brook that was just magic. Only one other motorhome shared this spot with us. A spot that we have dreamed off often but never being to find it in our travels in Australia. It was so hot (first time we had felt the heat) that we had to put the awning down and sit in the shade for the afternoon.
Recharged the batteries (ours not Ziggys) and enjoyed a peaceful afternoon wrapped up in a novel that have been too busy or tired to finish.
Friday 30th June – Polarsirkelsenteret – Artic Circle, Norway
Totally recharged and ready to enjoy the third day in a row of sunshine, we again decided to take a long drive heading towards Nord Kapp.
Roadworks everywhere today and to subsidise these, automatic tolls were in place. We can’t understand why these tolls have to be charged to travel along roads that are not yet completed and very difficult and hard to negotiate. Why not wait until the roads are completed and then charge for use of new roads? We struggled for nearly 100 kms and think we went through at least three tolls until we reached our final destination for today – the rim of the Arctic circle.
We left the valleys with raging mountain streams and rapids and forests and began again to climb back to the high mountains.
Sitting in front of the Arctic Circle centre surrounded again by snow capped mountains – “piebald” my driver said. Exactly what they looked like with mountains of white snow patches over a dark background of green and black.
Very touristy as bus loads of tourists arrived and departed. The Centre featured Norwegian Troll dolls at the front door and offered souvenirs for purchase and for the hungry tourist – a range of culinary delights.
We enjoyed use of wifi offered by the centre and took the opportunity for my editor to finish another blog or two to post to the web.
Very quiet once visitors left and the Centre closed for the evening at 10pm. Around 30 motorhomes camped there for the night.
Saturday 1st July – Saltstraumen, Norway
Overcast day though reasonably warm, we headed for Bodo and Saltstraumen.
More toll roads as we went over the Saltstraumen bridge.
Saltstraumen is a small town around 33 kms south of Bodo. At every high tide, the world’s largest maelstrom occurs and we wanted to be there to see it. We camped under the bridge, where although it states a fee of NOK 200 would be charged, we were told there was no charge when we went looking for a ticket machine. Big surprise as everywhere you go here, it costs money!
We arrived at 3.30 pm and high tide was 6.05pm – only had 2.5 hours to wait.
Sat under the bridge and waited with around 50+ other people.
The maelstrom occurs as two waterways meet each with two tides going in opposite directions. Best time suggested is high tide.
Having spent a great deal of time on the water with boats we have owned, we found this more than a little disappointing, though to those not in the same boat, so to speak, it may have been interesting. From our point of view, certainly not worth going to Bodo via Salstraumen unless the plan is to go over to Lofoten Islands by ferry.
Headed back to Ziggy and had a couple of stiff Vodkas to warm up before dinner.
Sunday 2nd July – Bodo, Norway
Weather: Totally miserable outside with very little chance of changing, though the long range weather forecast suggested it would fine up by Thursday.
We had intended to take the ferry to Lofoten Islands so decided to give it another day to clear up so headed for Bodo about 33 kms away. Dropped into the Tourist Centre in town and picked up some brochures about “must dos” in North Western Norway and then to find somewhere to camp for the night (so to speak) and read all about it.
Today, we went through at least four new toll roads that the sat nav did not pick up – ouch!!! Each time the minimum cost for us as we are over 3.5 ton is around $8 a time and I MEAN MINIMUM cost.
Headed up the hill to a place suggested by one of the blog sites we follow and after one more toll !! found the spot which had absolutely magnificent views across Vestfjordan on one side and the township of Bodo on the other. This was the starting point for a hike to Keiserstein – the Emperors Pass. There were two plateaus with the Lower being very busy as it was the starting point of some great hikes and the upper (where we camped) much quieter but better views.
We were joined by three other motorhomes during the afternoon and evening.
Around 11pm, there were patches of sun over the mountains way over in the distance, so took the opportunity to take a couple of photos and went to bed ever hopeful that tomorrow would be OK to travel on the ferry to Lofoten.
Coordinates for this site are 67.30118. 14.44281.
Monday 3rd July – Ulvsvag, Norway
Weather: worse than yesterday (if possible).
Put on the gum boots and parted the webbed feet and made an executive decision to bypass the ferry here and move further north until the weather cleared. Forecast now says rain until Thursday so will take the long way round by road to Lofoten which should take a couple of days (no ferry a saving of over $300-$400).
Another four tolls at least today – becoming a little tired of all the toll roads in Norway- there is absolutely no way around them unless you travel hundreds of miles to get around them. The government here really makes travellers pay a high price but the scenery is so unbelievably special – pay the price or don’t come, we think is the attitude.
Travelled again through high mountains with snow and rivers and forests – just so beautiful but the rain slowed us down a bit so stopped around 2pm for a well deserved rest.
Have seen the Xmas trees in the forests, the snow on the mountains – all that is left is to see Santa Claus at the North Pole with his turbo jetted reindeers. Have not sighted Rudolph and his friends as yet but have been told we will closer to Nord Kapp.
No where special tonight – just outside this little town in a quiet wild camp spot with at last count at 9pm – 6 other motorhomes.