Arvidsjaur – Sorcele 87.38kms 774’ ascent
I know that weather men get a bad press and today they thoroughly deserved it. When did warm and sunny manifest itself as overcast, and cold? We should have ignored the met men and clad ourselves in winter woollies. We still felt sure that temperatures would rise from this lowly 11 degress. So, we kept to shorts but added an extra body layer. As we prepared to quit the campsite, we were hailed with a cheery, “Hey, is that a Welsh flag?” We were so surprised we almost forget to unclip SPDs. No one, since leaving Nordkapp, had even heard of Wales, much less recognised the flag. Our new friend was an exuberant and enthusiastic Dutch cyclist who, with her father was riding from Bodo to Nordkapp with mother in tow. After an exchange of stories we wished each other well and we pedalled on. Within 20 minutes of our leaving, an ominous rumble could be heard in the nearby (very nearby) hills. By the time we registered thunderstorm alert and rummaged for our waterproofs, nature had done her bit and we were just a tad wet. And then it got even colder! We were now carrying enough liquid to rehydrate an army in the prevailing conditions, as we had ensured that we would not experience a repetition of yesterday’s begging exercise. Still, good for the muscles, pulling all that extra weight and we had finished and dispensed with the empty Scotch bottle! Did I mention that it was cold?! Now, as I have pointed out before, some apparently not good things do have an upside. Today’s upside was a wind (cold) that was blowing up our backsides and fair whizzed me along – (Alan needed a stronger wind in order to whizz). Actually whizzing stopped for 20 kms of 6% and puffing ensued.
If we were undaunted by the weather, so too were the mossies and midgies who, finding no bare flesh available, resorted to attacking Alan through his hair. He now has bumps on bumps the size of small muscles. It has been, nonetheless, an enjoyable and encouraging day. Having chosen to ignore the weather forecasts, we have no idea what tomorrow will bring, but bring it on.
I knew we forgot to pack something!