Before sleeping as I arrived at Nordkapp, my main tent pole snapped. There was nothing I could do to fix it!
The middle section has broken into 3 clean pieces and I took the manufacturers advice that I wouldn’t need one. Luckily, Sophie Rooney was also there so a battered carcass of my tent had all our kit in and we both squeezed into her tent. Not most comfortable of sleeps but it was sleep.
The sun never sets, it flies round the sky in an elipse. High and ahead at midday and low and behind at night.
The first day was effectively navigating by luck! He trail markings where either mom existant or low to ground so that you could only spot them once you reach them. Then the markings improved, but it seemed not well enough for me to follow as I ended up on a long detour.
It all felt wrong. I knew we were heading back to Honnisvag, so I made the decision to head high so I could see more, get enough signal to load a map and workout which way to head.
Lots of off trail walking and running and we were back on the E69 following the E1.
Eventually you reach the end of the road, or more to the point the start of a 7km long undersea tunnel. This was the strangest 7km I have ever run.
The noise of cars and extractor fans was deafening. All sense of distance was lost and every now and then you’d come across a workmans side passage.
It was tough going and we stopped short. Sophie was struggling with the terrain and the pace and it was getting late. A 500cal meal of spaghetti bolagnase and it was time for bed again.
Day 2 was harder. The trail was well marked but now the terrain was mountainous. It was either uphill on slate covered mountains or along the flat bogs. I have no idea how far we went at all. I just kept moving forwards.
At a lake, we found a DNT hut and luckily someone have left some dry food behind (way out of day but when you’re hungry who cares) so a quick meander to the lake side, a sit down and an interesting mix of porridge oats and rice pudding was the meal of the day. It did the job and the next few miles felt great despite the continuous climb for 2 hours.
Eventually, the top of what seemed like a never ending ridge was reached. Sophie is finding the going difficult and it’s interesting to look in on someone being so far out of their comfort zone. My plan is to stick with her for a few more days. Despite warnings her mentality towards her #Rundinavia may have been a little naive, but I gues that’s the whole point. Learning by being way out of your comfort zone.
I’m not sure what pace I’ve been doing but today’s pace seems slow to me. My cut toe was a little sore this morning, so it’s dressed and I’m avoiding all the wet big sections. Right now, I’m looking over a set of lakes with no sound but the sound of birds, the wind and the river flowing out of the distant hills.
It’s incredible that this land is so devoid of people. The only sign of them is the occasional foot print, or a fence line or the red trail markings that I am blindly following. The my bring an odd sense of relief in this landscape where I’m finding I lose myself and become no more than the sum of my steps, heart beat and breath.
The real test begins in a few days once the rations I brought run out and I have to move on with what I can buy.
It’s time to step on.