And finally to the most northern point in Europe

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August 17th 2007
Published: October 2nd 2007
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We are now well settled into campervan life and being on the road. Unfortunately as we were almost up to date with our blog we have not had internet access for over 3 weeks so here goes catch-up again.

So to the land of Vikings, Trolls, moose and majestic fjords. Oh and of course the summer midnight sun.

We caught a ferry from Denmark into Sweden and then headed straight into southern Norway. Once again this was the cheapest option and of course it was at a silly time again, 3h30 in the morning.

Norway is one of the countries that is high on our list of have-to-do’s and is our main draw to Scandinavia so if we have too many pics again, well...what can you do. Well its probably better looking at the pics that reading our drivel.

Our first stop was Norway’s capital, Oslo. It is a lively town and the main attractions for us was the Viking ship museum which has the best preserved Viking ships ever found that date back to around 890AD, now that’s old. The Ankerhus Fortress where we got some pics of Wendy on one of the cannons which for
Lost in Oslo.Lost in Oslo.Lost in Oslo.

Rob lurking around the street of Oslo.
no apparent reason have now become a thing to do every time we come across them(well makes a change from the wine). From here we made our way to Vigeland, which are the gardens by the Royal palace and which has the largest collection of statues depicting the human form (yes nudes) in the world created by the famous artist Gustav Vigeland.

Next stop was the 1994 Winter Olympic village, Lillehammer. Well of course we were there in summer but that did not deter us. First we visited the main ski jump where the opening ceremony took place. Well having never seen the actual ski jump ramps in person it is absolutely frightening to imagine anybody jumping or should we say flying off here. Even scarier is standing at the top glaring down. Not sure if the pics will give you a true indication but check them out anyway. Then it was time for the Bobsleigh and Lugetrack. Also we had not even seen this in person and as it was summer, yes yes we mentioned that already, the track was running wheelbobs(very fast bobsleds on wheels, basically go-karts) on the concrete track. So time to don the helmets and kidney belts and give it a go. Veering around the track at speeds up to 100km/hr we do not know why they call it “bob”sleigh as your head gets “banged” and not ”bobbed” from side to side. Well 73 seconds later and it was all over. Wow - what a super fast adrenaline rush.

We then made our way to Andalsnes, The home of the Trolls and the famous Troll pass. We camped at Trollevegen camp site which was an awesome setting below the Troll Peaks with Europe’s highest vertical face. It was our best camp site to date, awesome scenery and brilliant facilities. Next day it was time to introduce our beloved campervan to the Troll Road with its 11 hairpin bends as the road meanders past the Stigfoss Falls and up to the top of the mountain where there are fabulous views of the glacial valley below. Awesome! Well she, the van that is, made it to the top so we ventured on to Valldal where we ended up catching a ferry Fjord cruise to Geiranger. Well 2 hours later and actually can’t describe in words what we felt cruising down the most beautiful fjord ever…..Damn
Check my cannon?Check my cannon?Check my cannon?

Wendy ready for the big bang!
picture perfect views that will remain with us forever!

We left Geiranger after 7pm, went up to a view point and then decided to try and make our way back to Valldal or as close to the Troll road as possible, so we went up another hectic pass. It was worse than the troll road as we almost overheated, going up in 1st gear most of the way and all the squeaks were starting to come out. It was a bit hair raising, but we made it eventually…
We drove to about 10pm and we did our first wild, free camp by a small stream. As it was our first proper wild camp we ensured that there were other campervans around and this was just the spot as there were around 10 other vans. The toilet broke in the night so we had to use nature….mmm otherwise it went quite well.

The next day, before we made our way back down the Troll road, we decided to do a small hike. It was deemed difficult and steep, but hey that’s never put us off before, we always seem to go for the most difficult options…storey of our lives, but hey at least it keeps life interesting.
The hike was not very well sign posted and needless to say we got lost and made our own paths. We ended up scrambling up rocks and walking in the snow (for a change) whenever we hike there’s always snow at the end somewhere. Anyway it was some really awesome scenery, we could see the Troll road from here and it was good exercise. We spent that night back at the Trollvegen camp site where we had a well needed shower, sparked up a braai(bbq) and got stuck into some ice cold lagers and a glass of red wine or two for Wendy, for a change.

“Go to Hell!” was once told to Robert from one of his ex girlfriends (a long long time ago). Hey he probably deserved it. Having passed through Trondheim we stopped at the train station at a little place called ‘Hell’ (probably the most photographed train station ever). So to Robert’s ex girlfriend, wherever you may be, I’ve eventually made it, with my wife. Now what?

Next was the Arctic Circle centre. The Arctic Circle, 66deg and 33 min north, is the invisible borderline beyond
Ski Jump UpSki Jump UpSki Jump Up

which we find the arctic (the cold zone). At the centre they have the largest stuffed polar bear, which delighted Wendy to no end. We also free camped again and could feel the drop in the temperatures.

The world’s most northern brewery, Mack - Tromso. Having spent a few days in Tromso it was inevitable that we did the brewery tour. It was a good tour however the sampling afterwards was even better. One of their more popular ales is called, Artic Ale. Wonder if this is the coldest beer in the world? We met 2 English guys on the tour who where staying at the same campsite so after the beer tasting we had a braai (bbq) and even more tasting at their campervan, what big beers we had that night. In Tromso city centre we also met a woman off one of the cruise boats and she was donning a South African cricket shirt. So of course we spoke to her and what a character. She was from Scotland and completely cricket mad wearing an SA cricket shirt, one of the English cricket county shorts and Scottish socks. She was very pro SA.

Bow down Yee
Dont look down!Dont look down!Dont look down!

The view the skier will see before he takes the plunge.
All! We are now members of, ‘The Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society’ in Hammerfest. There is a once off joining fee and you can only join in Hammerfest, even Elvis was turned down as he was not there in person. In celebration Wendy bought herself another travel buddy; a little fluffy toy Polar Bear now called Percy......Percy the Polar Bear. Any of you who have spent enough time with Wendy will know of her Wendyisms and her fixation with Polar Bears, especially when it is cold she has been known to say, “It’s Polar Bears out there” or even “ The Polar Bears are out biting at my ankles”. So now she is officially licensed to say it - Go Wends! Hey we almost forgot to mention that Hammerfest is the northernmost town in the world, so there you go.

Our final jaunt in Norway was to Nortkapp(North Cape), the most northerly point on the European mainland. For over 300 years many historic figures have made the strenuous journey north: kings and princes, adventurers and explorers.....and now two travelling wilberries have graced them with their presence. This is supposed to be the best place to see the midnight
Get ready.....Get ready.....Get ready.....

Wendy nervously standing next to the Bobsleigh(wheelbob).
sun; in summer of course, did we mention that we were here in summer?? Well on the first night it was a little cloudy and the wind was howling, whoooo. That was not the wind that was Wendy howling at the moon that did not exist. Well at least we took some good pictures of the sun not setting in Hammerfest. Nortkapp also has the northernmost post office in the world so we sent a few postcards. If you did not get yours it’s lost in the post! Having spent the night here we were hoping for better weather the next day and indeed it did change, it was a complete whiteout. We could not see 10m in front of us with thick fog. It was too dangerous to drive so we spent another day here and at least there is a big centre at the monument where we watched an interesting Imax movie.

So now from as far north as we can go it’s the long haul back south through Finland.

Check you buy.
Rob and Wends

Additional photos below
Photos: 39, Displayed: 28


Get set......Get set......
Get set......

Rob ready for take off...
Go, go, go.....Go, go, go.....
Go, go, go.....

Bobsleigh in action.
Bobsleigh trackBobsleigh track
Bobsleigh track

Check that loooong corner...
Majestic parking spot!Majestic parking spot!
Majestic parking spot!

Our campsite at the foot of trollevegen
Lost in snow!Lost in snow!
Lost in snow!

Off the beaten track on our hike.

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