Saturday, 1 June 2013

Getting to Nordkapp

As usual with me it was a last minute rush getting everything ready for the trip - I had absolutely no sleep the night before my flight to Norway. So inevitably it was a rushed slaggy packing session and packed too much. Anyway I met Kinza and Michelle at Heathrow OK and the flight to Oslo and our second flight from Oslo to Alta went fine. Me and the girls then met Chris, Tom and Mark at Alta fine. We were greeted with very hot and sunny weather surprisingly none of us complained of course (better hot and sunny than freezing cold like it normally is in northern Norway). shortly later we boarded our coach to Honningsvag. The views were awesome and we could see that the cycling would be amazing if the weather stayed the same. We arrived at approx 6.30pm and immediately set to work assembling the bikes (we had to dismantle them and pack them into boxes for the flights). This went fine and we were on our way in a few hours me of course being the last one to finish assembling the bike. I hadn't given the fully loaded bike a test ride before leaving which was a mistake as it was FAR to heavy and unbalanced. After a few hundred wobbly metres I had to rearrange my stuff for better weight distribution -this helped slightly. It was only 24k to Nordkapp but it was a very long, tough going especially with the horrendous weight on the bike (mine must be at least a third heavier than everyone else's). Shortly after heading off from Honningsvag we bumped into a rather rugged looking bearded bloke with an impressive beard and an even more impressively loaded bike. We got chatting to him and found out his name was Benjy and he's been cycling around the world for 6 years and still has 6 years to go!!! We found him very inspirational and he killed any doubt about cycling to Western Sahara that we had. This gave me a real lift and me and Tom then spent the next half hour or so talking about how we should sack off any conventional career paths in England and just work so we can earn enough to be like  Benjy - watch this space!!! Getting back to our ride Chris, Mark and Tom went off ahead as they were able to go significantly quicker than me, Kinza and Michelle - a theme that has continued. I really didn't mind the slower pace though as the scenery was stunning the whole way up to the top. Michelle was really struggling With the massive hills (having not cycled more than 54 miles in a day before doing this and certainly no hill training as severe as this)so I decided to stay with her. Eventually we made it to Nordkapp at about 11.30pm (Thankfully it is 24 hour daylight in May here). We met the others and went over to check out the most amazing view I have ever seen in my life - The midnight sun outlook from the Nordkapp cliff edge over the arctic sea. After several photos we pitched our tents in the car park as other people had already done so and eventually went to sleep at what must have been around 1.30am.

Highlights: Arriving to hot and sunny weather in Alta, The Norwegian airports and their amazing women (fingers crossed there will be plenty of eye candy throughout Scandanavia ;) ), the scenic views from the coach but above all the Nordkapp outlook.

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