Biking along the fjord – a little more strenuous than Copenhagen but much less crowded

Unexpected hike to the falls during bike ride

We began our day with disturbing news from a neighbor in Iowa that our house and street were hit hard by a flash flood. We are thankful for thoughtful neighbors who are helping us get the help we need to remove all the muck and mud and water from our basement and garage.

Along the romantic road

We managed to put the flood aside and enjoy yet another spectacular day of weather –it was almost too hot. My few warm weather clothes are getting a workout while I have yet to use my down jacket, rain coat or umbrella.

Breakfast in our little communal kitchen at Eplet Bed and Apple went smoothly. I am impressed by how well organized the kitchen is and how people follow the rules, from cleaning up to sorting trash. We ate fresh eggs and strawberries from Eplet’s chickens and orchard, using butter bequeathed to us from the Pennsylvania family that left today. As I was taking down our laundry from the line this morning, I met a nice young woman who is Chinese and works at an American school in southern China. She is here with her French husband — we are road tripping together tomorrow. (They don’t have a car. Been there.)

Also met a nice Norwegian woman. Meeting people from all over is the fun thing about staying in this kind of place. It’s a few steps up from youth hostels, which I loved staying at in my youth and where I met some great traveling companions. Over 30 years later, I can still remember some of their names: Lyndal from Adelaide, Australia; Astrid and Martin from Berlin; Jon from Boston; Jerry from Dijon.

Solvorn Beach

I digress. Back in Solvorn, we took free bikes from the hostel on a ferry ride across the fjord (the ferry man was the same guy who sold us groceries at the small store in town) and onto “the romantic road,” a narrow road with few cars or even bikes. It hugged the shore and was quite hilly. We passed a few houses perched on the mountainside and red cabins hugging the shore; two waterfalls including a high one full of water that rivaled Tauganock Falls in Ithaca. This place reminds us a bit of Ithaca with — a narrow body of water lined on each side with high slopes; the waterfalls, gorges and farm green fields. But Ithaca doesn’t have the snow capped mountain we rode past here. And there are hardly any boats on the fjord or even signs of habitation along the road.

The view from our room at Eplet

We returned late to Eplet, exhausted after a lot of biking (on a borrowed bike with dodgy gears and low handlebars) and hiking (to the waterfall and the Urne stave church on rugged uphill paths in sandals with dwindling tread). Wouldn’t have had it any other way – except maybe having my hiking boots. We took a late dip in the fjord which was cold but very refreshing at 8:30 pm, had a beer at the little cafe in the village and had our second meal of the day with farm fresh eggs. Lovely day!

One of many ferry rides

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