We need a dry day to do our hike to Pulpit Rock and it looks like the weather might provide it for us.
We had a Skype call with Leigh at breakfast time and caught up on her news from home.
We packed the backpack with supplies for the trail plus rain jackets, just on case.
We have been using several websites that provide weather forecasts for the places we have been staying and each has predicted slightly different conditions meaning we take each with a grain of salt.
Now that we are in Norway we have added the Government weather office website to our range and with it comes the best rain radar coverage we have had so far. A full page with what seems to be reliable rain radar. The other websites have had a more generalised radar covering a wider area which didn’t seem to be that reliable when you want more localised conditions.
We had planned a 10am departure but when the rain radar showed a band of heavy rain approaching the coast off Stavanger we postponed the departure for an hour and continued to watch the progress of the band of
The website radar was right on the button because shortly after we decided to postpone the departure the rain arrived.
Time ticked by and we got ourselves ready again only to again postpone departure as more rain appeared on the rain radar.
At midday we thought that the weather looked like it was clearing and so we headed off to drive the 30 odd kilometres to the ferry at Lauvikk for the 8 minute crossing of the fjord to Oanes and then a short drive to the car parking area for Pulpit Rock.
This was to be our only full day in Stavanger so getting the hike completed was really in our interests as trying to do it tomorrow and then drive north to Bergen was going to make it a long day.
The sun was poking through the cloud as we drove west through the outer suburbs of Stavanger and it was looking positive.
Then as we got into rural country and amongst the mountains things on the weather front started to change and dark clouds rolled over above us and soon it started to rain heavily.
Things must have changed
since the last time we looked at the weather radar just before we left the apartment. It had taken us 45minutes to get within a kilometre of the ferry terminal at Lauvikk and it was time to check weather prospects again. Thank goodness for the mobile phone! We were able to recheck the rain radar and sure enough more bands of rain were still to come onshore and would pass over the Pulpit Rock area.
So we moved to plan B and headed back towards Stavanger deciding to put off the hike until tomorrow when the weather forecast didn’t show any rain expected during the day. It was going to make a long day but then the sun doesn’t go down until well after 10.30pm so we will have plenty of light on our side for the hike and the subsequent drive north.
We had planned to spend some time downtown in Stavanger checking out the old town on the waterfront and so this would be our opportunity with nothing else for us to do this afternoon.
We found a free car park and followed the signs towards the information centre where we thought there might be
public toilets as it had been a while since we last had the opportunity.
It seemed the information centre might be part of the railway station and even if it wasn’t there would always be a toilet available at a railway station.
There was but it required coins and we had left the coins we had in the car.
OK there was nothing for it. If we couldn’t find the information centre and a public toilet we would have to hunt out a MacDonald’s as they had always been a lifeline in the past.
Unlike back at Lauvikk where we were going to take a ferry to Oanes, the weather in downtown Stavanger was quite pleasant and dry.
We found the harbour and the old town by walking a little further on after the railway station and at the same time found Burger King who surely too would have a toilet for its customers which we were prepared to become by ordering a drink and large fries(we hadn’t had any lunch)
Fed and relieved we took a stroll along the waterfront and admired the brightly painted buildings that have been retained and are still
in use today with cafes and restaurants on their lower floors.
The MV Rogoland was berthed in the harbour painted as a hospital ship although this had nothing to do with its history.The repaint was all to do with a recent movie it had starred in that had been filmed in France and the ship had recently returned to its home port of Stavanger.We haven't been able to find any history on the ship except that it was built and launched in 1929.
One thing we had noticed that seemed out of place and didn’t expect with a small city in Norway was the number of beggars on the streets leading down to the waterfront.
The people begging did not look Norwegian rather immigrants who had either not been able to get the assistance to restart their lives again or perhaps immigrants who needed to supplement whatever income they were able to earn in their new homeland.
Seeing beggars had also alerted us to probably the greatest number of immigrants in groups that we have seen so far on the BBA V3 and naturally they stand out having dark coloured skin and wearing their traditional clothes
that Norwegians definitely don’t.
Being Saturday afternoon the old town area with its narrow pedestrian streets had a lot of people out shopping and there were a couple of times when we sensed that there was some tension between immigrants and young locals, all of them male in their early 20’s as we walked past where they too walked past each other in groups. Nothing actually happened but there just seemed an undercurrent of sideways looks.
A couple of hours walking and we were ready to head home.
It hadn’t been the most successful of days when we consider we didn’t get the planned hike to Pulpit Rock done but there would have been little point walking for 4 or 5 hours in the open if it was raining and also the views would have been diminished by low cloud and rain.And we did get to see old town Stavanger and could tick that off the list of things to do and places to see,
So tomorrow will be a very early start for the BBA V3 and we will repeat the drive to the ferry and take on the trail. Fingers crossed for a reasonably
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