I had not chosen an easy start on my NPL, preferring mountains and fjords in west instead of the flat but boring E6 in east. From Stryn it would continue in the same way, a lot of high mountain passes to cross in Møre og Romsdal, but eventually it would be much easier cycling when I joined the normal NPL route from Oppdal to Namsos.
Day 21 - Stryn to Valldal
Distance/accumulated: 85.0 / 1865.7
Avg/max speed: - / -
Elevation gain: 1305 m
Headwind cycling west to Hornindal and headwind cycling east to Hellesylt, how is it possible? Anyhow I was lucky with the ferry departure to Geiranger, waiting less than 30 minutes. The one hour ferry trip to Geiranger was somewhat disappointing because of the low clouds, hiding the steep mountains and much of the sceneries along the fjord, an UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most popular tourist spots in Norway. It was too cold to hang around in Geiranger, so I started almost immediately on Ørnevegen (Eagle Road), a steep switching road which reaches 620 metres at its highest point. Awesome views of Geiranger fjord from here. The downhills to Eidsdal was interrupted by frequent stops to adjust the cycle computer, which continued to show no readings. Eventually I gave up to fix it, and raced down to the ferry going to Valldal. I decided to stay the night here.
Day 22 - Valldal to Eidsbygda
Distance/accumulated: 83.0 / 1948.7
Avg/max speed: - / -
Elevation gain: 1145 m
It was a sunny morning, but the weather turned worse and worse as I started the gentle uphills to Trollstigen. Cycling down from its highest point (850m), I was shivering badly in the cold and rainy weather. Fortunately there was a restaurant just before the famous steep switching road down Trollstigen, where I could rest inside and have a rather expensive meal. That gave me sufficient warmth to continue the downhills to Åndalsnes. The cycle computer started to malfunction again, so I decided to buy a new one in Åndalsnes. I probably spent nearly 2 hours there, eating and installing the new computer. It was not raining anymore when I continued to Isfjorden and not long after I found a perfect campground in Eidsbygda, where I decided to spend the night.
Day 23 - Eidsbygda to Romfo
Distance/accumulated: 116.5 / 2065.2
Avg/max speed: 19.5 / 54.5
Elevation gain: 1210 m
Yet another sunny morning, which made my tent uncomfortably hot, but at least I was forced out early in the morning. A guy approached me and suggested I take the ferry across Langfjorden, because the road on the north side of the fjord was shorter and less trafficked than the south side. It turned out he and his wife was having a day trip along this road, so I decided to "join" them to Eidsvåg. On the ferry I also met another long distance biker from Germany who was cycling to Trondheim, but he was aiming west for Molde and the coastline, while I was aiming east for Sunndalsøra and Oppdal. After Eidsvåg there were a couple of long tunnels, the first one was ok, but the second one (Øksendal) I hesitated. It was 6 km long, kind of narrow and very smoggy, so I decided to take an alternative road around it. That turned out to be quite hard work at the end of the day, gaining 235 useless meters in elevation. But the downhills to Sunndalsøra was at least a nice reward. Sunndalsøra is an ugly town, so I just had a hotdog before I continued up Sunndalen. As I mainly used the bicycle roads up this valley, I was not aware of the main road crossing the river, while my road continued on the other side. The road was looking more and more like a dead end. I even rang the bell on a couple of houses nearby, but nobody was home. Short of advices I decided to turn around. That added more than 10 km extra and a lot of uphills, but the most annoying part was that it started to rain heavily when I was already supposed to be in camp. I was cold and wet when I arrived the campground just before Romfo.
Day 24 - Romfo to Berkåk
Distance/accumulated: 94.6 / 2159.8
Avg/max speed: 19.4 / 52.0
Elevation gain: 905 m
It was raining in the morning, so I decided for a late start. The weather improved somewhat as I started the uphills to Oppdal, where I had my lunch inside a restaurant to prevent me from being cold. The last 30 km to Berkåk was fast and furious. It started to rain heavily again, so I decided to check in at a campground some few kilometers after Berkåk.
Day 25 - Berkåk to Mosvik
Distance/accumulated: 164.6 / 2324.4
Avg/max speed: 21.0 / 54.5
Elevation gain: 1335 m
It had been raining a lot during the night, and it continued during the morning. Again I decided for a late start, hoping the weather forecast was correct about less raining after lunch. The raining eventually stopped, so I left at 11:15 with a water soaked tent and a moisty sleeping bag in my luggage. The 30 km (mainly downhills) to Støren was made in a record speed, then I continued easily all the way to Klett staying away from E6 most of the way. At Klett I decided to take a shortcut to the Fosen ferry, instead of wasting my time navigating through the big city of Trondheim. The ferry took me to Fosen, and I chose the eastern and shorter route via Leksvik to Steinkjer. The uphills after Leksvik though, was hard work at the end of the day, but I managed to reach Mosvik dead tired after 165 km, finding a nice spot for camping next to the sea.
Day 26 - Mosvik to Namsos
Distance/accumulated: 120.7 / 2445.1
Avg/max speed: 20.7 / 49.4
Elevation gain: 910 m
The sunny morning was spent drying my clothes and tent. The first 40 km to Steinkjer was easy cycling in nice weather. The next 75 km to Namsos was easier than I expected after being told that this was a boring and strenuous road to cycle. I could have cycled much more, but decided to stay at a campground near Namsos to get a much needed shower.
Previous leg: Lindesnes to Stryn
Next leg: Namsos to Moskenes