It continued to rain very hard all thru the night again until about 6 am!!! This luckily gave us an opportunity to pack up camp under fairly dry conditions. Leaving in the morning at about 930 it had really cleared up finally. Today our tour was up the very scenic route 13 to Kinsarvik.
This takes you along the fjords to Hjelmelandsvagen where you get the ferry to Knutsvik. You keep along the sea and then turn inland towards Sand.
As you go north there are an incredible number of tunnels on this route of 100 meters to 5 km. Most are wide and well lighted, but several are narrow and quite dark. Our friend Dieter gave us the trick Norwegian riders use, which is to close one eye before the tunnel and open it inside. The closed eye is adjusted to the dark and you can actually see much better. Of course remembering to push down your sunglasses helps more! There are some bridges that lead right into tunnels in the mountainside.
This route runs along several large lakes and hundreds of waterfalls. There are several huge waterfalls including the high drop at Fengafoss and the double falls of Latefoss where the spray covers the road with water.
As you continue north you hit another large fjord and you ride along the east shore to the town of Kinsarvik. Here there is a nice campground with a view.
Gene and Neda and Takeshi from Japan whom they had met on the road joined us here later. It was a great photo op with his bike between the 4 Canadian bikes.
We had a dry night until about 6 when the rain started, but again at about 8 we got a break to pack up. We had planned to go up the 13 and take the cut off to Flam and then head to Lom, but somewhere we missed the turn and ended up north and we had to make a circle route. In the end this worked out better since we like Flam and we love a circle route.
We headed out again north on the 13 To the Hradanger Bridge, which is the largest suspension bridge in Norway. You enter the bridge thru a 3 km tunnel (which actually has a round about in side it) and then leave the bridge into another 7 km tunnel.
Just after this we took a detour on a single-track road to the quant town of Ulvik, or it would have been if it had not been pouring. The circle route back to the 13 is over a number of switchbacks and over the mountain.
At Voss you continue north on the 13 and originally we had planned to go east here on the 16 to flam and Lom, but we decided to keep going north. This leads over a high snowy mountain pass with lots of switchbacks and an incredible number of massive waterfalls. It was pretty foggy at times and got down to 4 degrees. The color of the mountain lakes was aquamarine. This dropped us at the ferry at Vagsnes and to Hella.
From the Hella side we had much better weather and we rode east on the 55 and then south on the 5. Here again there is a long tunnel that ends at the ferry dock at our second crossing today near Kaupaner. After the crossing you unload and go into another long tunnel. This ends at Laerdalsoyri and from here you can either take the 25 km tunnel or the old mountain road in to Flam. The weather at the start looked good so we went on the road. This is a single track with passing places. The accent is continuous and the drop in temperature is too. At the summit is a large snow covered peak. After this the visibility was very poor and the temperature dropped to 2 degrees.
When we started to descend the fog cleared and you could see the amazing views of the fjords below. There is a viewing platform cantilevered out from the cliff at Stegastein. From here the descent is all switchbacks to the seaside.
The little town of Flam is a tourist hub. Our friend Dieter told us there is a good brewery here so we had to check it out.