08/08/06 - Ørnes to Mevik Camping

On waking I pull the curtain aside to find the sun shining. The clouds have gone, and it is much warmer outside. We are up and dressed promptly, making our way down to the ample breakfast bar downstairs for sugarpuffs and smøbrod.

The Viking Pub

The Viking Pub and ferry to Vasdalsvik - view from our window at breakfast time

The Viking Pub and ferry to Vasdalsvik - view from our window at breakfast time

Svartisen glacier behind Ornes

The Svartisen glacier behind Ørnes

The Svartisen glacier behind Ørnes

As we leave town, we can see ice on the glacier quite prominently. It would have been good to have got close enough to walk on it, but the road towards it dives into a long, deep tunnel outside the town, and this tunnel is closed to cyclists. Instead we cycled for just over an hour to Mevik Camping. We’ve taken such a huge bite out of the remaining distance to Bodø that it seems sensible to stop here for the night before pushing on into the less populated mountain area beyond, where there is little or no accomodation within a day’s riding at our natural pace. Just before Mevik we pass a carefully hidden pair of policemen with a radar gun, waiting patiently for the next speeding motorist on this quiet stretch of road.

Mevik Camping is owned by Gerd, who welcomes the opportunity to talk us for an hour or so about the fighting in the Lebanon, George Bush and the Texan mafia, and the decline in tourism in this part of Norway (which she ascribes to the drop in fish catches hereabouts, which are a big draw for German visitors). We rent Hut 3 from her, which is a pleasant two-room affair next to the river.

This is more like it - lunch at a picnic table, and another afternoon of beachcombing and paddling. The beach is just below the campsite and is sandy and quiet. Actually the water isn’t too cold here, no worse than in Cornwall thanks to the Gulf Stream. In the evening I phone ahead to book another two nights of huts at Kjopstad and at the Saltstraumen, which should be our last night’s stay on the RV17.

View along the shore at Mevik

View along the shore at Mevik

Actually, since we’ve been here I’ve found that Reinhard Pantke’s photographs on flickr do the view much more justice than mine.