[ blog » 2022 » 07_Tour_Norway ]d01: Tromsø to Lyngen (by Philipp Gesang, location: A camping spot near a roaring stream )


Today had a lot of "first"s:

On Two Wings

If I had known that Zurich airport would get that noisy in the middle of the night I'd have taken a hotel room. Thanks to a large crowd that materialized out of nowhere in the waiting area around 3:00 h I got virtually no sleep at all.

At 4:45 I obtained the promised free bike carton at the oversize baggage check-in and disassembled the bike. That carton proved narrower than the ones I'm used to getting from the local bike shop so I ended up having to completely disassemble the carefully intervowen array of bars and bags that is my cockpit to fit everything in. On the plus side, they didn't notice I left the tires inflated. As expected nothing happened, the Marathon tires just shrugged off that bit of loss of pressurization.

The flight itself was less spectacular than it could have been as large parts of the Norwegian coast were covered in thick clouds. I'll have to postpone my appraisal of Slartibartfast's magnum opus for a few weeks then.

The bike actually made it to Tromsø in one piece -- or more accurately in the pieces I packed in that carton. Reassembly in the airport lobby was uncomplicated as well, just the rear derailleur seems to have lost alignment in the process. Could have been way worse!

On Two Wheels

Leaving the airport lobby I was greeted by the sunniest of skies -- the Garmin reported an incredible 34 degrees! Temperatures stayed in the twenties all day and probably still are now at 22 h. Optimal cycling conditions are such a relief from that night of stress.

On the road east of Tromsø I found some great company, a touring couple from Freiburg who travel at a comparable speed to mine, so we shared some stories and, most importantly, the wind for a couple kilometers.

My original plan to camp next to a tunnel somewhere near Lyngen failed as the ground proved to be littered with rough, sharp gravel. So I went on to Lyngen where I met another cycle tourist who gave me the crucial hint that I couldn't expect the shops to be open tomorrow on a sunday. So instead of boarding the last ferry of the day to Olderdalen with the others I went to get some more Kaviar and beans (see below) from the supermarket and then went to look for a suitable spot to pitch the tent for what is technically the "night". I didn't have to stray very far from Lyngen to find a neat corner out of sight with a picturesque early 20th century stone bridge next to it. Great spot of a first wild camping experience.

A Matter of Taste

One of the first things I did on Norwegian soil was to obtain a Circle K Koppen, the coffee mug that entitles you to free hot beverages at every Circle K gas station in the country for the whole year. After I first heard about the Koppen during my 2020 tour I remained incredulous that such a scheme might exist. Today I finally held the proof in my own hands! That mug is going to see some use that's for certain.

Also discovered one of my new favorite foodstuffs: Tinned Kaviar in a tube. Amazing taste and tons of the right omega-3s, EPA and DHA -- my taste buds and joints rejoiced in unison!

The inaugural hot-pot cooked on my MSR stove went well, just black beans with ground meat and cream, but after a day in the saddle that can be quite a treat.


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