|From Lofoten to Trollstigen, Norway||Week 64-65 30th July - 4th August 2012|
| The main crop seems to be hay.
It dries better when hung on the line!
|A bit of "up and over" as we headed towards the main road to Narvik.|
Someone forgot to provide a track up the cables for maintenance.
A bit of disappointment, the glow plug hasn't arrived. That's two and a half weeks since ordered.
Due in Oslo "the next day" it will be sent to Trondheim.
| Narvik is the ice free port for the iron ore from Kiruna.
The ore terminal is in the middle of town. Surprisingly little pollution.
There were three ships waiting.
|No mention of Australia!|
| South of Narvik the mountains are subtly different shape.
Much more sculpted and scraped clean.
The only way south is on a ferry.
Just in front is an odd looking craft that looked like a couple of people lived on board and cruised the fjords.
Without internet we hadn't had a chance to check ferry prices.
| Ferry arrives, door opens, we drive on.
Drive off the other end at the other side.
About A$42 for the 20 minute crossing.
|Now the weather is warming up a bit (though not any drier) its time to remove some insulation.|
| That's better! Much more respectable.
| Norway has dump points. Well signposted.
This one had fresh water.
Had a chuckle with a couple of Slovenians as we both produced a pair of pliers as the tap handle was broken.
Of course water is the least of our problems in a land of mountains, rain, and pristine rivers.
Rising like a giant shark's fin.
Easy to imagine the ice flowing round and over.
Not a good idea to stand in the way.
| Driving in Norway is certainly different.
We are a bit slower than most of the traffic. Some overtake well but most hang back waiting for a sign that its ok to overtake. By the time they've caught up the moment is lost.
I was very uncomfortable using the right indicator to say "its ok to overtake". And unlike Scotland where everyone waves very few Norwegians do.
This circus transport did what we did and slowed or pulled off the road occasionally.
A monument to some aspect of WWII.
In this case the site where 11 Russian prisoners were shot after trying to escape. No indication by whom.
There was an inscription in Russian on the rocks, placed there after the war by some of their surviving comrades.
|We are simply following the E6 south. The rail line is alongside.|
Past Saltfjellet-Svartisen national park.
We were tempted to walk a bit but the cool wind made it very uncomfortable.
| We drove past the polar circle souvenir shop.
A bit sad to leave the Arctic Circle. Though its nice to have a bit of darkness at night.
We have a sneaking suspicion that there will be more people, more pressures on available camp spots, and more "tourism".
| We thought we'd look at the end of the glacier at
Svartsdalen. The southern end of Saltfjellet-Svartisen National Park.
The river has that milkiness of rock flour from a glacier.
Alas, we learned from someone driving the other way that "the boat is broken" and its too far to hike.
We admired the mist on the river for a moment then turned round thinking of how ruination and pestilence could be applied to a broken boat.
Some sort of mining and smelting? Or wood pulp?
We guessed someone thought that when there are a myriad waterfalls one won't be missed.
| A Jettegrytene!
About 20m across and 30m deep.
Ground out of the rock by rocks circulating in water.
Now we are desperately trying to remember where we last saw one! Quite certain it wasn't this large.
There was a ladder but everything was a bit wet so we stayed topside. There were another 20 or so on the other side of the gorge, but also a bit steep and slippy.
Sometimes there are round rocks left in the bottom of this sort of hole. But not this one, or they have been covered by soil.
This is signposted on the Villmarksveien (road 806) a bit north of Hattfjelldal. We took a detour to escape the traffic of the E6.
A chuckle with a couple of Germans over the signs that said the 1.5km track was "dry". We'd hate to see a "wet" one.
|Hattfjelldal is logging on an industrial scale.|
| We followed "a white road" south of the Vetsna
The gps didn't like it.
Stopped for a chat to the farmer. Its an old logging road and is passable but a bit overgrown.
We really missed a beat. He told us about an old "Samisen" farm about a km further on. When he hopped in his van to move it he kept driving. When he stopped we were so busy waving thankyou we didn't realise he was probably showing us the track to the farm.
We're a bit slow some days.
| Not too bad really.
A few potholes. Mostly third gear.
| This is a bit of river we crossed.
We had tantalising hints of driving through a deep gorge but too many trees to really see.
| The reason the gps didn't like the road. After this it
stopped telling us to turn round!
After an hour and a half we met this bridge which was similar design but longer than others we've met and had a weight limit.
A thorough inspection and we drove over without incident. The main span was based on two 600mm I section steel beams.
| We joined road 763 and headed south.
Met up with the enthusiastic German couple we'd seen earlier at the jettegrytene. They'd driven the easy way north of the Vetsna River. We admired the Borgefjell National Park in the distance from a shiny new bird watching platform.
Very few tracks into the park. And few birds in the wetland.
| Trondheim is Norway's third largest city. Population
Still quite a way away we begin to see grain growing.
| Rolling hills and farming.
It reminded us of how the Chinese cities seemed to have grown up on the plains where food could be grown.
| Before reaching Trondheim I did what I should have done
Remove the dead glow plug from the cooker.
I was hoping I would get away with only opening it up once.
Three hours to remove the cooker from the bench, clean cooling and combustion fan blades (they needed it), remove glow plug and inspect the burner (it was clean), then re-install in bench.
| The good news is that after the application of a bit of
emery paper and use of a magnifying glass I could read the original BERU part number.
01 002 211 51 for anyone else who needs to know. BERU are a Finnish manufacturer, as is Wallas who I think have something to do with the cooker..
I invested some of our limited internet time and found a cross reference list so also have part numbers for equivalents from Bosch, Champion, NGK, Fiat, etc.
I believe its also used in some Toyota Hi-Ace models.
The glow plug is misshapen and open circuit which means it really is dead.
A bit odd that there is carbon on the thread. There is no seal before the thread as occurs in engine applications.
| This is Stienkjer, still north of Trondheim.
Silos for the grain.
We took a detour to Stiklestad to see King Olav's battlefield - around 1036 when he was introducing Christianity. We missed it.
| Haven't a clue!
Someone's real life Meccano set!
| We think a paper mill.
| And we joined the many happy travelers who wondered at a
town called "Hell".
This is the shopping centre.
The Webasto glow plug hadn't arrived in Trondheim. That's more than 3 weeks.
We purchased the nearest Bosch equivalent for A$24 which is expensive but heaps cheaper than the Webasto A$100.
| The farms around Trondheim and south are mostly of a
A long thin two storeyed house and a separate two storeyed barn with ramp to the top.
There's something we've missed about the absence of a feudal system but the presence of "cotters" who have their own small farms but supplement by working on the big farm.
There's a hint in history that the absence of feudalism contributed to the egalitarianism of contemporary Scandinavian society.
| We headed around then into the Trollheimen Mountains.
Past Todalen to Karvatn.
Hoping the weather will clear enough to allow some walking.
| Camped short of Karvatn and installed the shiny new glow
Only an hour this time as I didn't have to inspect and clean things.
After a couple of tries it worked.
We did a little jig, had a cup of tea, and cooked up some salmon that had been taking up space in the freezer.
Not happy with Webasto. Expensive part and poor delivery. After messing around for nearly 5 weeks with phone calls, extra travel via Narvik, gas cooker, glow plug in UK that took too long, the total cost is A$527. As a test I purchased an alternate off UK eBay - A$10 delivered to mate's next day instead of A$100 and no delivery. Now to find out how to complain!
I phoned Hellanor at Trondheim as agreed to let them know the alternate worked.
| The car park at Karvatn had a NOK100 fee for overnight
The weather was lousy, the track soggy, the A$16 fee too high, so we retreated.
| The unmistakeable (to me) profile of an Aluminium Smelter.
Norway has lots of hydro electricity. Norske Hydro is the smelter owner.
| Noticeably harder to find camp sites in the valleys and by
the sea as we travel southwards.
We are a bit east of Afarnes.
Almost at the top of another "up and over". About 7km of 10% gradient both sides.
We have another 10 days in Norway. We'll hopefully see a glacier, a Viking museum, and whatever else takes our fancy.
The advice from German travelers is that the ferry from Kristiansand to Hirtshals in Denmark is the most economical.
|Trollstigen and Reinheimen National Park, Norway||Week 66 5th - 6th August 2012|