Starting Location: Abisko
Ending Location: Moskenes
Total Distance Traveled (including this day): 3500km (approx)
Bike Comfort Factor (1-10) :5
“Tired” Factor (1-10) :4
I’m classing this day as a mistake. Enjoyable, but a mistake. It *was* supposed to be a rest/contingency day. Where there was no pressure on us to get to anywhere and we could make plans if we wanted to. We could surf the web, update sites, sleep or explore. There was an alternative. Head north to Tromso to do a “we got there” trip. As there will be with any group, there were disagreements on what to do with this day. We all agreed that while there were no technical issues and everyone was fresh, we should push on. Tromso was an option. Chris and I would have went for it but didn’t want to upset the status quo. Roy wanted more “twisties” and Gregg…. well Gregg just didn’t care as long as he was enjoying himself on the bike. We decided to bring the following day’s trip forward and head to Moskenes down the peninsula. We were warned this was a full day trip, but didnt listen. We added a detour north to Hartstad to increase the miles done that day. This was the main mistake.
We set off early that morning and within an hour reached the Norway/Sweden border.
After a few photos and some.. em… childishness, we pressed on and for the first time tried the Norwegian roads. Two important points:
1 – Roads in Norway are good, but not a patch on Sweden
2 – Norway has no road that goes in a straight line!
We headed west on the E10 and then swung North up the B3 to Hartstad (the most northern point we reached). The roads deterioated, but the scenery was amazing. Then west to Refsnes and onto a quick ferry to Flesnes.
Roy wanted to take lead so he could push on with the twisties, while Gregg and Chris wanted to enjoy the amazing scenery and stop when they wanted to for pictures. I found myself somewhere in the middle. Loving the corners but appreciating the desire to admire the scenery and enjoy the ride in a place I would never see again. After the ferry we headed south and rejoined the E10. It was then we started to notice it was already quite late in the day. Roy went ahead again, but his terrible Garmin satnav and interesting sense of direction was not his friend. We lost him, found him, then lost him again. After waiting for a while for Roy we decided to press on. He called/texted and we agreed to meet in Moskenes. That lead to another 4 hours of riding, down amazing roads, hairpin bends, tunnels that went on for kilometres and very very narrow roads. But by 6pm there was no joy left in it. We had ridden all day and were at the “lets just fecking get there” mode. My sat nav got us closer but we approached roadworks near Moskenes. Well, this is Norway so we stopped and looked for alternative routes.
There weren’t any. You drive through building sites and roadworks. You do that because when you get this remote there is only one way to places. Three bikes rode through a full on road building site, avoiding JCBs, vans, builders and at one point a 10tonne boulder being moved by a JCB. After this part comments like “I think I pee’d myself” were mentioned. For the non-believers, this is a screengrab of my SportsVue cam.
By approx 8pm, we made the Moskenes camp site. Gregg was tired.
Roy joined us about an hour later, after his Sat Nav brought him via Mordor. We pitched tents, knowing there was a very early start for the ferry the next morning.
On the positive side, Chris discovered he had an exceptional talent in tea-making using his camping cooker. Food, not so much, but tea and sleep was very welcome. I set the alarm for 5.30 as we had a 7am ferry to catch the next morning. Gregg had to share a tent with Chris. Gregg’s snoring hit “legendary” status that evening. We were waiting for written complaints by local wildlife and Fog Horn companies.