The Salangen Tour

1 day
135 km
April 1989

I spent the whole of 1989 in the Norwegian army. 9 months of it up in the north, 2000 km from home. I liked Northern Norway and this is one the reasons why I now live in Scotland. Scotland and Northern Norway has a lot in common. I brought with me my bike and I did some smaller day-tours. This tour was the second serious day-tour I did in Northern Norway. Mainly because I wanted to see the mountains of Senja from a distance. I was still not brave enough to want that three days tour I did on Senja just a couple of weeks later. This tour around Skoelv seemed like a good tour in it's own right.

Please note that the bad quality of the pictures is both due to my incompetence as a photograph and the bad quality of the camera.

I started from Setermoen one sunny Saturday morning just after the breakfast. The tour took me down the Bardudalen valley for some thirty kilometres. The road was pretty boring. The mountains above it was pretty nice and I enjoyed the weather. After these thirty kilometres, a small hill took me up to the crossroad to Sorreisa. The road went up a small vertical hill to a small lake which I followed to the end and then into a new valley which then dropped down to a lake. I took this picture at the lake in Sorreisa.

Looking back towards the mountains at Bardudalen.

The road then dropped down to the fjord at Sorreisa. I was slightly tired so bought a bottle of Coca Cola. This was a mistake I have not repeated during the last 20 years. I normally love Coca Cola, but not during a bike ride. This liquid has a bad effect on me and this error made my situation worse. The situation was not helped when to spokes broke into two on the climb over to Skoelv.

Looking towards the mountains at Senja.

It was during this climb, and overlooking the mountains at Senja, that I decided to give Senja a try 14 days later during a small holiday. See the Senja tour report.
The bike became a lot wobbly due to the loss of two spokes. I gingerly continued the road down to Skoelv. I cycled up the dirt road to the Skoelv lake. The climb was gentle, with a small steep part at the top. I had a long break at the lake.

The Skoelv lake.

The road was pretty interesting at the lake. It was still a dirt-road and I was not too happy about that. I reached proper tarmac again just before the descent down to Elvevoll. The road now climbed up to the hill overlooking the Salangen fjord. The views was good from this hill. The descent down to the fjord was a bit hairy on the wobbly bike. I reached it without breaking my neck and I was happy about that.
The road to the head of the fjord and the small Sjovegan village was pretty undulating and my legs pretty sore. The road through Sjovegan climbed over a small hill and then descended to a lake. The road past this lake was pretty undulating. The twenty kilometres long road up the Salangen valley to the crossroad at E6 was pretty flat, with a notable exception of a half-a-kilometre long and steep climb halfway up the valley. At the crossroad, the road climbed up a steep hill before it gently descended down to a lake and then down to Setermoen again.

This is a pretty good day-tour. I guess only a madman like myself would have done it. But the lessons learnt on this tour resulted in the Senja tour and finally; the fantastic North Cape tour. That tour again resulted in a lot of other things....... This is why this tour have a special place in the history of the mad cyclist; myself.