This year we have had the best summer for over 14 years. Temperatures up to + 30 C or more and sun all day long, at least most days. I was going south this year. Last year I was north and went all the way to the North Cape, so this year I aimed to visit Lindesnes the most south of Norway. Actually plan was to go camping with a friend one week this summer, but she moved to Germany so I altered the plans.
First day I had a really bad rain, storm and thunder. Here at Strynefjell. When I was to sleep that night I actually was scared the camping trailer would tilt. Of course it didn’t but I was scared. I could have driven further that day but the wind came from behind the mountains and if I was going down the other side the wind would have been even worse. So better safe than sorry. I thought to myself: “- Is this going to be another rainy summer?” But it would become better, much better. Like sun tan better. :)
I had to run som arrends in Sweden. I stayed at a camping called Örnäs in Åmål in Sweden. Åmål is actually a really wonderful little town, with a nice little town centre and a harbour. Small nice shops and open cafe’. It was full so they let me park in the parking lot outside for a 100 SEK. At least I could park in the city and I had shower and toilet and so on.
The next day I left and went to Dals Ed and a national park. To the story this year goes that I did not get my gas refrigerator to work this year. So With only an electrical cooling bag in the car was all I had in the heat. I could therefore not bring much food in the camping trailer.
When I found Rörviken I was so excited I felt I wanted to stay a few days here. But I had no working refrigerator and was about empty for food, so I had to drive to Halden area in Norway to shop and then go back again. Rather long way but…
In Rörviken I went paddling, swimming, sun bathing, BBQ and I even got a German Family come visiting. They stopped for shade and a bath and we started talking. Nice folks. :)
Back in Halden and further on I tried to find a shop that could help me with my refrigerator problem. Actually gas problem since the stove did not start either. But with no big luck before Fredrikstad where a caravan service and store helped me. The most embarrassing thing? Yes it was I who had forgotten what way the main switch inside should stand, and the camping wagon was not levelled enough. Ooops!
So this is me…
Well, not a tomato exactly but the feeling of made a fool out of myself. :) At least I have something to laught about. :)
When I was straighten up and that was in order I went on to Drammen and drove up Spiralen.
Spiralen is a spiral tunnel inside a mountain in Drammen going from the bottom to the top, and at the top is a view-point and a cafe’. It is a rather big town. Did you know that the Norwegian word “drammen” means “the liquor shot” (vodka, moonshine a.s.) in English? LOL It is actually not the scientific explanation for the name Drammen but the translation is correct. :)
When I came to Drammen I saw this big sculpture inside the tunnel in the centre of the go-around. It was not much traffic, actually I was alone there, so I made a quick stop and took a photo. After had driven up Spiralen tunnel I got a spectacular view over Drammen from the cafe’ and really nice service. It was really hot outside and inside. and the man working in the cafe looked overheated. I felt for him so I told him some kind words. He must have become very glad because when I bought apple cake with ice and coffee, and water he actually gave me the coffee for free.
Outside sat a Swedish couple on tour in Norway who was going to Rjukan as the last stop before going home. We sat there talking about Norway, driving roads of Norway, vacation, and a lot of stuff before they had to leave to reach Rjukan in time. They had a hotel booked. Very nice company they were.
Now going to Sandefjord to see a friend. I stayed at Granholmen Camping just outside of Sandefjord City, a very nice camping with a beach by the sea. As usual I went looking at the facilities. Toilets, showers and family showers, and emptying of toilet, trash container, and a bar. All but the toilet to empty the Porta Potti in was good. Yes, they actually had a toilet to empty the toilet in, and some hose to flush it. A toilet is not well-formed for emptying such in, wide up and narrow down, it made it splash on me. Had to change after and shower. Oh my…
When I went to shower I got really excited to see that the shower was free! No coin machine! So I took a shower. It was ICE WATER! Oh, my poor head and skin was hurting, and my brain felt like when you drink or eat something really cold too fast. ICE BRAIN!
Well I had to shower and so I shampoo, conditioner and showered. Disappointed I went to the camping wagon. Just a little later when I had to go to the toilet I discovered there are two kinds of showers! One free with only cold water, and one pay-shower with hot water. I realized the cold water was good for my skin, I had burnt myself in the sun a bit and that cold shower actually helped. Felt much better the day after. But man was it cold!
Yes, now I have a story to laugh about. :)
I was going to see my friend the day after so I tried to get in touch with her, but I had problems with my phone and had to get WIFI connection with the camping. A little texting and we said to meet the next day. We went to Midtåsen and went for a drive to the seaside, and a walk, and had some food at the beach.
I stayed at the camping after a went swimming.
Next goal was to get to Lindesnes. So I found E18. The motorway is a really boring way, nothing to see, a lot of blown up mountains to make place for the road, no places to stop, no photo inspiration, no views, and a total cultural dessert. I wanted to drive the little roads for a while. I l stopped and ooked at my map (that is rather old by the way) and found a road that looked pretty straight forward on the map. But I would come to experience that the roads there were much more complicated than it looked on the map, bad sign posting, little information, and the map old as I said. Actually I do not think all the roads there were on the map. Anyhow I ended up driving in a circle and got to the starting point where I left E18. Below are some photos from the small roads. As this driving in circles happened twice from different locations, and it was past dinner time I just gave up and drove E18 straight to Lindesnes. It is sad when they build the small ways away with big roads. Big wide high-speed closed in roads with fences is good for going from A to B in a hurry, but bad for vacation and exploring.
Then finally I got to my goal. Lindesnes the most South place you can find in Norway. I had heard about it but really never seen much about it so I did not know what to expect. First thing I met when I came to Vigeland was a sculpture of the Lindesnes Lighthouse. It was rather fun. The nature was really Nice, a real summers paradise.
I went past a few camp areas but thought I should have one as close to the lighthouse as possible. I ended up at Lindesnes Camping, according to the ads the most South camping of Norway. It was full but the manager said: “- You could stand on the growl by the drive way if it is ok with you?” I had been driving all day long on this horrible E18 (so boring) that I just wanted to park, and also I had no plan of sitting by the camping trailer all day long tomorrow anyway so I said yes. He took out a cable to give me Power to the trailer. I was a little shocked to see that it was a indoors cable, it was the red kind. It was not meeting the standard for being used outdoors (outdoor cables are black). My nearest neighbour was a shed, a really ugly shed. But I could park and I could use the rest of the place.
Looking around the camp it was ok. Not the most modern but clean and ok. 10 kr for a 5 minute (the most expensive so far) shower in a booth with a bench, toilets, and behind this a washing room. I could not go in the washing room, actually I could not even stick my nose in the room. The stench of fragrance fabric cleaner and fabric softeners was so strong I had a beginning asthma attack the second I stick my head in the door hole where I was looking in. Chemicals in the fragrance cleaners and softeners hurt my lungs. I just took a quick photo and got away from there. I really wish people could go fragrance free so even I could wash my clothes. I always have to bring clothes for a whole month, since the wash rooms are not available to me. Showering I must do when there is not so much people, early in the morning or late at nigh because of all the fragrance shampoo, conditioner, soap and hair products. Soap to wash my hands after being to the toilet was also fragrance. Shape up all camping site owners! Go fragrace free!
Weather was nice an a clear sky so I thought it would be a spectacular sunset this night. According to the weather app Instaweather it would set at 11.35 AM. Having time to spare and needing food (this was a Saturday and most shops are closed Sundays) I went to the town of Spangereid to look around and shop. I did not find the food store so I could not buy any food. Well, no worries I had soap. In Spangereid I posted a photo with Instaweather to Facebook. And while at Lindesnes Lighthouse later that night I got a message from a Facebook friend. “- Are you in Spangereid now?”, she said. I was at Lindesnes photographing when I got the message.
The hour was closer to midnight when I saw the message on my phone. I thought she had gone to bed, but I answered and she asked if I would come to see her? Ok, I said. So I went and we (she, her husband and I) sat til 2 o’clock talking. We had a wonderful time and agreed to meet the next day. We sat talking for hours and went for a walk around Spangereid. It was a lovely town.
Nice when friends is out camping and is at the same place as oneself. :) She also tipped me on many nice places along the road. Next plan were therefor to go to Brusand, it is big sands in Hå. But one never knows what to find when driving so this is exiting. :)
Day after it was cloudy and raining again for a while, but later the sun came back. My camping site had not nice place to go swimming and sunbathing so I left. Next goal Brusand.
I went through Flekkefjord, a really lovely little town. I so regret that there were no good place to park with a camping trailer. I so wanted to stop and take a strawl.
It was stop and parking forbidden all over the place. I continued on driving on and came to Åna-Sira. Another nice little place. First I got a little confused when I spotted Åna-Sira border market. Border market I thought? What? We are in Norway far from the border! Later I sat there thinking and got insight. It was at the border of the county. :) Never seen that before. :)
The shop was nice. It was that kind of little store that had about all you need. Vegetables and meet in a cooler room. Unfortunately the lady working there decided to use the floor cleaner and polishing machine in there when I was there. I was looking for BBQ meat when she came in. First I did not see her, but when she started the machine it took only 4 seconds before I had a asthma attack there and then. I had to hurry out from there. I tried to put it all on the cashier desk, and I paid, but with struggle. I had struggle breathing. When I was about to put it all into nets she came out to me and was upset. “- Oh, how come it took so short time for you to get sick?” she said. “- Such cleaners is bad for my health.” I said. Of course she could not know, but I told her to please not do that again when it is customers in the store since 25% of all people have asthma and it is a great chanse the customers get sick from it. “- I can bag it for you and I will bring it to you.” she said. “- You go out and get some air.” she said. She was really nice. That was good service in middle of the whole mess. So when I stoud there by my trailer taking medicine she cam with my shopping bags all the way to the car, checking I was fine and then went in again. Nice lady. :)
I packed the food in the trailer and went.
Back home a man at work told me about a place called Helleren along the road 44 and the area around, and he pointed out the approximate position and said it is worth looking at. I drove the road.
And when coming out of the tunnel, there it was! Wow! How cool! Two cottages hiding under a cliff. See Helleren farm people!
This little farm was once a part of a bigger farm called Haneberg. It was custom back then that the small farmers rented the land from the bigger farm and landowner for a monthly rent. They had a life contract as long as they paid their rent. This was also valid for Helleren. It is actually the rock formation that is called Helleren, and archeological excavation have made it clear that people have been living under Helleren since the stone age. The houses under Helleren is from earlier times, but it is believed that parts of the houses (base) is older than the 1700. Last persons living there was in approximately around 1900, Ingeborg Elisebeth Jakobsdatter with two grown sons, Oskar and Ideus. She sold her contract to the nearby buisness in 1909 and they were the last persons living there.
The most amazing thing about the housing is the water supply. They collected water dripping from the mountain in buckets. The spot is called the Drop, and it is said to be good water. Sadly I did not know it was safe to drink before I came home so I did not taste it. Read more about Helleren…
It was an amazing landscape and mountain formations all the way here.
The Rossland God
I saw people had actually put stuff in the sacrificial stone crates. Maybe they hoped for babies?
Hå and Brusand
I am interested in history, and I read a lot, and really old times is really interesting. Driving through this landscape I thought of the ice age and the ice forming the landscape and mountains. Standing by the sea looking out I thought to myself: “How strange to think of that people were looking at the same rocks as me in the iron age.”
I went on to Brusand, I was told it was a marvelous sand and I so longed for sun and swimming in the ocean. I had never been there before so when I saw the first sign for Ogna Camping I went in hoping to find a fine camping spot on a nice place by the sea. What I found was a growl parking lot for campers and trailers divided with rocks. I checked out after only 5 minutes and demanded my money back. The least one want when going camping is nice surroundings, not a growl parking lot. Then I rather free camp.
Looking at the map there were another camping site a little further away so I went and came to Brusand Camping. And it was really nice with grass, levelled spots for the trailer to stand on (no fuss), grass to place my chair on and walk on, and close to the sands. Lovely!
I looked around and found that the place was very nice. New and fresh, clean and tidy showers (10 per 5 minutes), family shower, toilets, kitchen area, washing area, an out-door emptying Porta Potti area, and tv-room. Over night campers had their own facilities. It was green and the camp spots were divided with bushes. Oh, I like this camping. :)
I went exploring and drove about. Plus I had not the right cable contact for getting electricity at the camping and the woman in the reception told me they maybe have those in the store in the nearest town. The first thing I came to was Kvassheim Lighthouse. So why not take a look?
The closest town was Vigrestad. A quite little town, the bakery was summer closed, but they have a marvelous COOP X! It is the kind of store I remember from the time I was a kid, you know the one where you find food, knitting, clothes, shoes, hardware, cooking and cleaning under the same roof. It was a wonderful experience. :)
Unfortunately they did not have that contact I needed. That is they had it but I had to cable it myself. I now how to make a standard lamp, but a three pooled earth secure over to a normal 230 V is out of my knowledge, much to dangerous to mess with. So I just had to do without since the camping do not sell this.
The next day I went on a drive about in the area. I saw big farming areas and animals. When looking at the landscape I thought of farmers in the old days who had no big machines to clear the fields. This land is full of rocks, not pebbles, and it fills the land. It must have been bone breaking hard labour to clear the fields to be able to grow food. They are lucky today to have so big and strong farming machines to do the work with.
Back at the camp site I wanted to go to the beach, it was sunny only windy and I so wanted to see the sands. I put on my bikini, brought my camera and other stuff and went out. On my feet I had flip-flops with a thick sole, the ground was not flat (it is never flat in nature) and I tripped over my foot badly so I ended up standing on my ankle, and it hurt so bad I fell down on my back. There I was lying on my back crying from pain. I can only say that now I understand what the football players must be feeling when the grown men lie crying in the field.
Luckily I had my phone with me. And really I am so happy for smart phones. If I would not have had my mobile with me I would not have been able to call for help and would have had to crawl back to the trailer. I looked up the number to the camping site online and called the receptionist. A few minutes later two men came to my rescue and let me hang on their shoulders back to the trailer. They even carried my things for me and got the sun-bed out of my car for me. I got the “orders” to rest for a while. :)
After an hour in the sun resting I decided to go to the local ER office. The foot was swollen and I could barely walk. I ended up with having to drive to Stavanger also for an X-ray. I used all day. 30 minutes to Hå Doctors office and 90 minutes tour/retour to Stavanger University Hospital. I am lucky to have automatic gear and it was my left foot.
Sprained my ankle forced me to change my plans. My next goal was to go to Preikestolen (Preacher’s Pulpit) and Kjeragbolten. It have been my dream for many years. But this means hiking in terrain. To go to Preikestolen is a 4 hour walk there and back, and Kjeragbolten I really do not know how far it is. Anyone have a clue?
For the rest of the tour I had to stay in the car and trailer as much as possible and do as little walking as possible. The best would have been if I could just have sat with my foot up high, but I had to go home. The sprained ankle got swollen every evening, and after sleeping with the foot on a high pillow all night it was a bit better, to get swollen again.
But I did one daring thing. I went in the bushes on a path to find an ancient iron age site. It was there I understood I should not go such paths again before I got better. But this is what I found, rock carvings.
It was nice to see the stone carvings. I think I saw something about those on the tv show Norge Rundt once.
I went on the old road 13 called Ryfylkevegen, it is a famous road in Norway. Road is parts really narrow and bad but the views are fantastic.
So then I was at Odda and I was able to go to see Folgefonna glacier [1, 2]. It is snow all summer. This day it was about +30 C outside and glacier water in the river and the glacier on top of the mountain. I love this. Sadly I could not go on glacier tour.
One of the things that shocked me this vacation was when I came to Odda and wanted to see the Folgefonna glacier. The camping was full and I did not find any parking big enough to park the trailer. The signing of the road said NO Motorhomes (bobiler). ONLY forbidden for motorhomes (bobiler). So I read that as it was ok with a trailer, and my camping trailer is small as wide as my car. and with a sprained ankle I was afraid to do t much work. So I went. At the bridge over the river I parked to get som photographs, I did park so others could pass and I was not in the way for anyone.
There I stood photographing the river and the mountains under the sun and clear skies when I suddenly turned my head of some reason and saw a car driven by a grandpa with white hair in a white shirt having his wife and grandkids in the car coming right at me without stopping, and he was close. I had a sprained ankle and could not walk fast, but I tried to get away as fast as I could. I felt chased away by the car. I did not hear the car coming due to the noise from the river and the fact that I have a hearing loss since I was 6-7 years old. I shouted to him that: “- You can not drive people down!” And he shouted back “- You can not park there!” Like that was an excuse for not taking consideration and try to run people down? He could have talked to me or used the horn instead. I was not in the way of him with my parking, he passed without difficulty with good margin. I was on foot standing on the bridge and did not hear him. He have regardless no right to run me down. I was in such shock that I did not get his registration plate, and he is lucky because if I had I would have reported him to the police. I got to the parking lot under the glacier by the cabins and turned. If you are coming there with a camping trailer, don’t go up there. I managed fine, problem is to turn when you get up. I was lucky this time the cars was not so narrowly parked. And the signs at the bottom of the road should really include camping trailers as well. A bigger car and camping trailer would not have come far and the road is so narrow a bigger trailer would get problems. Park and go by car up.
The glacier was nice and the area beautiful. And you can go with a guide at the glacier if you want. I have to wait until my ankle gets all well again.
Still on road 13 I passed the fruit area in Helgeland. Fruit everywhere. I tried to find an open camping (3) but it was impossible so I just kept on going until I found a space by the road. I was so tired. Just some BBQ cooking and and alcohol free beer. Life is good!
So off to Bergen to see a friend.
I actually had more bad luck this summer, but enough with the nagging :)
Now I have been all the way to the North at North Cape, and to the South at Lindesnes Lighthouse. Now I have only to explore all the rest in between, and visit friends. :)
That’s all folks! Sitting at home healing my ankle.