Day 113 – One more week
I’m waking up to a clear, fine morning. Fine, but cold. I slip and slide along the road, grateful that there's not a lot of traffic.
It’s so quiet. My senses are on full alert. A smell of sawdust triggers a memory and the sun in my face triggers a smile. It got warmer quite fast, and when I started the descend, the road was no longer slippery.
When the road finally flattened out, I was in Setesdal. A beautiful valley where the sun was reflected in the smooth wall of the surrounding mountains. Here and there were an occasional waterfall and thick forest of evergreen trees decorated the landscape. The beautiful, old houses all around continued to amaze me, even the bus stops and the public toilets were made of wood and grass-covered roofs. One word kept popping in to my head: charming. The only exception was the roadkill, the road splattered with dead lemmings... Not as charming.
The days are getting shorter. Already around 5 P.M, I put on my headlamp and continued for a short hour before stopping. I found a beautiful location to camp, just by a lake. When I went to collect water, however, I found a dead lemming in the edge of the water. It was a huge lake, so I didn’t know if it would be contaminated, but I didn’t dear to risk it. I walked a little further up the bank and boiled the water afterwards, just in case.
One more week... When the weather is nice, I could continue this forever. But I’m nevertheless quite ready to be done with this trip. I have even planned what I’m going to wear (jeans), what I’m going to buy (Black Nike Flex TR 7) and what I’m going to eat (homemade apple pear crumble á la Simon Devos). 200 kilometres to go. Go me!
Steps: 38 723
Day 114 - Hobo
Another cool and frosty morning. The frozen ground was glittering like diamonds in the pale sun. Sheep were huddled together, trying to keep warm, while some brave hardwood trees lost a few more leaves to the cold, autumn breeze.
It took the weak morning sun hours to thaw the ground, and me as well. I had to keep walking to stay warm. My exposed face and nose struggled the most, and passing a gas station, I decided to take refuge there for some time.
After all my limbs were heated up, I continued my walk. During the day, the temperature rose slightly, but I couldn’t stand still for long for fear of loosing a couple of toes. I had seen on the weather forecast that for the next three days, it was going to rain A LOT. The clouds got thicker and greyer every hour, but I got inside before I even felt one drop.
Inside, well, yes, let me tell you about the inside I’m referring to...
The destination I was aiming for, was a camping spot called Reiårsfossen camp, located by a big waterfall down by a fjord, really beautiful location. I went to the reception of the camping site, but it was closed. And it looked like it had been closed for years. I searched the area for open doors, and got lucky on one long building behinfd the main house.
The door was cracked and the corridor was dark. A perfect location for a horror movie, I thought. The corridor was maybe 20 meters long, with doors placed along both sides all the way to the end. The doors led to bedrooms, which were all locked, except for the bathroom doors, they were mercifully open. When I found out that it was electricity and running water in the building, I located the cleanest bathroom and camped on the floor next to the heater, hobo-style.
Steps: 52 691
Day 115 – Creative solutions
The long days and short nights were starting to take its toll on my body. My shoulders were aching from carrying Mr. Skywalker and my feet were so stiff, if I stopped even for a second, it took some time before I could walk normal again.
Before going outside, I wanted to plan my next destination. The weather forecast prepared me for a wet day, so I thought it would be nice to end up on a camping site with a toilet and maybe a shower. I located one on Google maps and went outside.
To my relief, it was not raining. The clouds hung threateningly over me, but only an occasional drizzle occurred, which I was very grateful for. The whole day I walked along Byglandsfjorden and after I managed to turn my head around a bit (I was quite miserable in the beginning), I could really enjoy myself.
Only in the last hour of walking, did the promised rain appear. My umbrella was starting to fall apart, so I got quite wet. Almost there, I thought, hoping against hope the camping site would be open.
After a small breakdown, I decided to put up my tent on the porch of one of the rental cabins. It worked out quite well. That way, my tent could stay dry for another night. Score!
Steps: 40 746