Around the Pond: 5000 km on the North Sea Cycle Route

This is the worst day yet. It starts with a thunderstorm in the morning. I wait in my tent until the rain stops. It is nearly noon as I leave.

The route starts with heavy inclines on gravel roads. I'm not really in shape today. The landscape is great, mostly the route leads through forested area, sometimes on small highways, sometimes on gravel tracks. If only it wasn't so wet, dripping from the trees.

As I approach Kragerø it starts to rain again. I take shelter under a roof over the entrance to a shop (it is sunday, the shop closed), and continue as the rain eases.

From Kragerø I want to take the ferry to Stabbestad. At 5 p.m. I join the auto queue at the ferry harbour. Now it really begins to rain. I don't mind that much, thinking that in an hour I'm in Stabbestad in my tent. Just to make sure I'm in the right queue I ask a guy from the ferry company. Of course I'm not in the right queue! From this harbour ferries leave for or five destinations. The ferry to Stabbestad isn't due until 7:30 pm.

I spend the next two hours freezing, wet, barely protected from the rain by something like a bus shelter. But the alternative is to take a rather large detour around the bay. It's too late, and I'm too wet and tired for that.

Luckily the ferry arrives on time, and shortly before 8 p.m. I'm in Stabbestad. The next camping site is in Ørvik, a few kilometers down the road. To get to this road I have to climb a steep hill from the harbour. After that climb I'm at least no longer cold, if still wet.

The reception at the camping site has closed at 6 p.m., but there is a sign to a meadow for tents. Except for one house tent I seem to be the only one. Everyone else seems to be in the camper and caravan areas. The meadow is wet and swampy. I pick the driest spot and start to pitch my tent. A few hundred mosquitos join me.

While pitching my tent one of the tent poles breaks again. I'm lucky that I got a new tent pole in Göteborg, otherwise I'd be in trouble now. I repair the pole with the repair sleeve.

Day 34 - July 6th: Rognstranda - Ørvik


Rognstranda - Nordbø - Kragerø - Ørvik


Distance: 47.32 km
Cycle time: 3:18 h
Average speed: 14.30 kmh
Hight difference: 817 m
Total distance: 2262 km
© Thomas Stets
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