The Tarmac snake

The lofty mountains of the Lofoten are behind me and the road continues through a more agricultural landscape.  The rugged vistas and dramatic glacial valleys have been replaced by bumpy forested hills stretching like a line of molehills with dairy farms and vibrant shimmering green fields of barley.  Even in the most wild of places the Norwegians seem to have immaculate well kept gardens and a healthy love of a lawnmower.  Perhaps it is down to a human desire to place a sense of order when everything surrounding is wild and untamed.  Houses are painted largely in a traditional red ochre and perch precariously above the road.  

It has been nice to have some company on the road.  It can be a lonely place when there is just a never ending stretch of grey snaking through the landscape.  The roller coaster can be mental and physical – and the highs and lows equally as exhilarating or exhausting. When the going gets tough music is my saviour.  Headphones in and the legs power away to the beat.  So I will be forever grateful for new Spotify playlists to keep me going! (Philcox2).  From time to time there will be a point where nothing hurts, the legs just turn, the breath even and unfaltering, the mind wandering from the aesthetic to the existential to the practical and before I know it another 10kms have been clocked. 

I have left my German friends behind.  They have been true gentlemen of the road – helping me with bike problems, chaperoning me through some terrifying tunnels and sharing the joys and challenges of the road.  After this rest day in Trondheim I head inland.   For some reason I am apprehensive of this next stage.  Maybe because there are many routes and my GPS packed up a week ago.  For anyone that knows me well, navigation has never been my strongpoint (or left and right for that matter).  But perhaps such a lack of reliance on technology will be good for me..Or at the very least an enforced reason to let go and see where the road takes me. 

a rewarding view after a 350m climb

with lother the 75 yr old legend

outside Trondheim cathedral being a true pilgrim

attempting the bike elevator in Trondheim. i got 2 metres up and fell off