This week would see me travel to the furthest North I’ve ever been. Tromso is nearly 70 degrees North, and soon the sun will set and not rise again for a couple of months. Kinda cool, kinda terrifying.
Highs and lows of the week(s)
Highs: More hiking in possibly the most beautiful place in the world.
Lows: Gas finally running out and getting spanked £170 to replace it.
After an awesome week bagging peaks, seeing wild porpoise, and generally having one of the best weeks ever on the Lofoten, it was time to leave.
Not before one last hike and one last beach visit to tick off the never-ending, and forever-growing, list.
Flakstadtinden was on the list, another impressive peak, and another steep climb. But the beauty of this is that you can be up and down within 2 hours as the distance is never more than a few miles.
One final visit to Haukland beach to soak in the Arctic beauty then it was time to head back to Svolvaer for the evening so I could finally have a shower, hit the gym, cook in the sauna, and round out a 10/10 week on the Lofoten.
I’d be heading North to Tromso, to collect a special package, so even though it’s not actually that far on the map it was still 7-8 hours driving to get from the Lofoten to Tromso.
Thankfully the driving is made much easier by the prospect of seeing wild reindeer, more porpoise, moose, and the forever majestic Norwegian peaks.
Once off of the Lofoten and back onto mainland Norway, the landscape suddenly changed. The autumn colors were in full flow and it felt like the 2 weeks I’d spent on the Lofoten had been months, given the drastic change in the colors.
Not only do the trees change though, but the mountains also do too. Replacing the sawtooth, razor-sharp peaks, are much bigger and more ’rounded’ mountains that seem to tower over the surrounding landscape much more dramatically.
Once I’d collected my package, it was time to spend the night in Tromso in a nice Airbnb to catch up with some washing.
Tromso is pretty cool. In typical Arctic weather, it decided to rain whilst there so I didn’t manage to get out and about too much but a walk around the town and a visit to the Arctic Church was cool.
The next stop was Senja.
One of, if not the, largest Island in Norway. It always surprises me when people travel all the way to the Lofoten but don’t know where, or what Senja is. I can see in the next few years that it’ll be as popular as the Lofoten. Rightly so!
Unfortunately one of the roads is closed in Senja, so you now cannot do an entire loop as I did in 2019. Thankfully it’s not too big of a detour back, only an hour, but made adventure planning a little more difficult.
First hike, Hesten.
Proving myself right from last week, sometimes the best peak is better seen from another, neighboring peak. Point in question, Segla. Senja’s pearl. The reason most people travel or come to Senja is for Segla.
An impressive mountain, slopping down into the fjord below. It kinda reminds me of Half Dome in Yosemite.
The weather wasn’t too great, and for some reason, I also didn’t feel too great. Snapped some shots of Segla and headed back to the van.
The forecast was clearing for the night, and it was going to get cold, but give a chance of seeing the Aurora again.
Both of which happened, and it was awesome to sit under the night sky watching the Aurora dancing above, again.
Stupidly, leaving the van door open wasn’t the best of ideas, as meant when getting into bed it was SUPER cold. Thankfully the heating is good and it warmed up pretty quickly.
Upon waking, and after making the first coffee of the day. The gas finally gave way! In fairness, I’ve had the van for over 2 years now and not once replaced the gas bottle. Probably slept somewhere in the region of 100-150 nights in the van across that time, and done many day trips with brews and dinners made. 2 years isn’t a bad shift for a 6kg gas bottle!
Unfortunately, the gas bottles are different here in Norway. Of course, they are. That said, I needed a new pipe and adapter (£70), and then as always when buying gas, you pay for the bottle and the gas. Unless you’ve got a bottle to return. That came to £90 so a total of £160 for a new pipe and 11kg of gas. That said, it should technically last four years now?! Worthwhile investment.
Not only is Norway incredible. But the people are too. The manager of the Circle K garage helped SO much with the whole thing. He rang a caravan place and asked for adapters, but they didn’t have any. He rang somewhere else, they had it. He basically went super out of his way to help and I am forever grateful for the kindness and love from strangers.
Driving around Senja, and Norway as a whole is always difficult because you have to pull over and stop every 5 minutes.
Spending a day just driving around, taking photos, drinking tea, walking on white sandy beaches, and just soaking in the Senja ‘mood’ was always going to be a good day. With it being a bit too wet and windy to hike, sometimes these days are the best option.
Seeing these famous peaks from above was always a goal when I first visited here in 2019. I finally made it to the top of Husfjellet which gives an impressive view over the different peaks on Senja.
The hike isn’t too bad, but once passed the first summit the mud and bog are something else. After trying hard to keep shoes and socks dry, it was a fuck it moment to just send it and go for it. A very wet and muddy day out!
That rounds out the week. From here it’s southbound towards Bodo and then I’ll start the slow journey home through the middle and southern parts of Norway.
One thing I want to note is that from now on I’m going to aim to post every Sunday. One of the sticking points I have is “working” and “not working” when on my laptop. It makes sense to tie these in with working days when I am at my laptop a lot rather than trying to force it midweek.
That said, next week’s edition will be from Friday right through till Sunday, so a bumper one (again).
Thanks for the love and support so far, the messages I get through IG to tell me you’ve read the blog or enjoyed it really do make my day. Thank you.
See you Sunday, when I WILL catch up and be on time.
Plus, I’ll announce the next plans for my Nepalese adventure.