Sunday 18th June
An alarming thing happened today as we accidentally drove over the highest fjord accessible by road in Europe. We knew we were doing this because they had a sign declaring “This is the highest fjord accessible by road in all of Europe”.
Before seeing the sign, I’d been becoming increasingly concerned by the changing terrain. Suddenly, outside the window looked like this:
“I don’t think I can go further north if this is what it’s going to be like”, I told Morgan, panicked, thinking wistfully of all my winter clothing that I’d left at home.
Turns out, we were just at the top of a mountain and the weather went back to an average level of cold when we got down again. Not before my boys had thoroughly frolicked in the snow:
After the snowy incident we made it to Geiranger – a particularly impressive fjord, even by Norwegian standards:
The problem was, everyone else seemed to know that Geiranger was spectacular too, meaning we had to contend with the huge crowds of people being shepherded on and off tour buses. Not that there’s anything wrong with doing the tour bus thing, but it’s pretty funny watching a very large percentage of these tourists turn around from whatever attraction they’re being shuffled along to and start snapping photos of Lex instead. It’s hard work being a celebrity.
We followed one of Norway’s official scenic routes between Geiranger and Trollstigen in the afternoon, a road that Norway promotes as being particularly beautiful. It was hauntingly desolate. Morgan wanted to live there forever.
Along this route we also came across a ridiculously blue glacial river:
The Norwegian tourist board puts really good facilities along these scenic routes, such as well-kept public toilets and cafes which looked nice, but we really couldn’t tell you because they don’t allow dogs inside. Obviously the buildings were all edgy and elegant and slightly thought-provoking, because everything is art in Scandinavia.
Trollstigen was pretty amazing too:
Plus watching that narrow twisty road from above was super fun. At one point a bus and a caravan had a stand off where neither would reverse to let the other pass for a really long time. The number of cars being blocked off by this got longer and longer, and we stood there all like “if one of them doesn’t move soon that bus coming up the hill is going to enter the fray, and then things will really kick off!”
Today was the day when it stopped being dark, ever. Turns out we’d finally gone far north enough that although the sun still sets, it rises so soon afterwards that the darkness has no time to really settle in. At 1am we found ourselves trying to settle down to sleep, taking it in turns to periodically exclaim “but it’s so light! You can still see everything!”. Yet for some reason, we continue to charge our solar lamp in the day. It’s like we don’t quite trust all this light.
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