[YEAR 7!] Quit our jobs, sold our home, gone riding...

acg

Adventurer
I have been keeping up with your posts. Thanks for sharing your adventure with us. Stay dry!
 
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We putter around the Preikestolen Campsite, taking our time before leaving. I like that the days are so long up north that we can wake up and start riding anytime we want - which is late! Daniel and Sara are early birds and have left while we are eating breakfast, we'll catch up to them at the next campsite.


First ferry of the day. Get the wallet out, Neda!

The day starts off without rain, so we're very optimistic that we'll get a chance to experience the fabled Norwegian summer that's on all the travel web sites and brochures. You know, the ones that feature all those green-covered fjords towering over impossibly clear blue skies?


We start heading north

There's a route that travels right along the western coastline of Norway through Stavanger. But going that way requires a very long and expensive ferry to get to the next fjord north, so we opt for the inland route instead. Our chosen road curves around a myriad of inlets and lakes. Nice. And very scenic as well!


If you like riding past water, you'll like the west coast of Norway!


If you like riding through tunnels, you'll like the west coast of Norway!
 

Stopping for a photo opp


Loving Norway now that we are warm and dry!


Riding carefully, lest I wake up the troll underneath this bridge

Traditionally, Norwegian trolls live in rocks, mountains and caves. Later on, they were associated with landmarks and I think it was the Three Billy Goats Gruff fairytale that was the first account of a troll living underneath a bridge.


When the road rises high enough, you get spectacular views of the inlets below


Roadside flowers bloom in the middle of a Norwegian summer
 

These steep cliffs were cut by glaciers!

A fjord is created when glaciers extend to below sea level. The deep grooves they carve into the bedrock underneath are exposed when the glaciers recede and are then filled with seawater creating inlets, channels and fjords. Pretty cool that all of these geological features we're riding around were created during the last ice age 10,000 years ago!








We roll into the campsite at Kinsarvik in the late evening and the sun is still hanging high in the sky. I love traveling in the north!
 

Our neighbour Dan sizes up Neda's cooking gear and is deciding whether to start another camping gear comparison showdown or not...

Sara and Daniel have planned a pretty long riding day tomorrow and we've got a different schedule so I think this may be our last evening with them. It's been nice having company for a while and I'm sure we'll run into each other somewhere, sometime! The world seems so small when you're riding around it on a motorcycle!


Raining when we visit Borgund

Well, the good weather lasted all of one day. The rain is back in the morning and the air is cold with mist hugging the sides of the mountains. We ride to our first site of the day, the Borgund Stave church but it's too wet to walk around, so we duck into the visitor's centre to wait out the rain.


Stealing free wifi

The wifi may have been free, but the staff at the visitor's centre were giving us the stinkeye because we had occupied a table for over an hour without buying anything. So we bought some really expensive cake from them. Too ashamed to say how much we paid... Ouch. Norway is expensive!


During a break in the rain, we literally ran out to see the church

Stave churches are built in the middle ages and are made entirely of... Norwegian wood. Isn't it... no, too easy. There used to be a lot of them built all over north-west Europe but today, most of the surviving Stave churches are only in Norway. The Borgund Stave Church was built in the late 1100s and is the most well preserved and authentic stave church.


The church is surrounded by a cemetary
 

The wood has been heavily treated with tar which gives it a dark appearance


Christianity? I always thought the Norse religion involved Valhalla, Odin, Thor, Hulk, etc.


Inside the Stave Church


Great detail inside the church. You can see the dragon motif repeated everywhere.

There are runic inscriptions on the wall inside and one reads, "Thor wrote these runes in the evening at the St. Olav's Mass" No kidding!


The cemetery outside Borgund Stave Church
 

Dragon motif on the roof pointing off to the sides. Similar to the ones on the bow and stern of their ships


Overlapping tiles of the roof look like the feathers of a black bird


Tombstone in the cemetery
 

Herbie

Rendezvous Conspirator
Christianity? I always thought the Norse religion involved Valhalla, Odin, Thor, Hulk, etc.
It did, at one time. Before the Christians came, and then Marvel after that.

There was a rather brutal and active campaign between the 8th and 12th centuries to stamp out the germanic paganism and replace it with Christianity. You probably have heard how many of the major Christian holidays were originally pagan ones that Christians adapted, adopted, or overlaid their own mythos atop. Like many cultures that converted to Christianity, it started with the kings and rulers, then took considerably longer to filter down into every day life. This is why you see so much runic and pagan artwork inside a Christian church. At the time it was built and being actively used, the population was still in-transition.
 
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