NORWAY- Prague, Tallinn, Nordkapp, fiords, Oslo

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Doogle, May 13, 2019.

  1. Doogle

    Doogle Do it while you can Supporter

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    I fly out of Dayton, Ohio May 31 and land in Prague June 1. I will need to find a way to Wroclaw, Poland. That is where I rented a Yamaha Tracer 700. It's mine until July 15. My main goal is riding the Norwegian coast. I am riding in a counter clockwise direction so I can be in Essen, Germany July 12-14. I am taking a tent and sleeping bag, that I hope to use infrequently.

    I have a list of places to possibly see. Each night I will decide where I go the next day. I don't feel like I am prepared as well as I like. The digital world that is supposed to save time seems to be consuming too much of it. GPS's, new phone, new Geekam action camera, downloading and installing OSM maps. And I've been bringing my old netbook back to life. It's bulky and slow. But I prefer it over tablets and phones. My eyes prefer 17" screens. I looked at temperatures in several areas of Norway and know it's cold up north. I'm still undecided on whether to take heated vest and gloves. They are bulky.
    #1
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  2. Doogle

    Doogle Do it while you can Supporter

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    As I started packing everything into my dry bags, I wasn't happy with the volume of things. Usually I take a back pack (personal item) and a 30 liter drybag as my carry-on. Checked luggage takes time and causes missed flights. And without checking things, it forces me to travel light. For this trip I decided I probably should take camping equipment. And that requires checked baggage. I'm having second thoughts about that now. And, I'm thinking maybe I don't need as many cold weather clothes as I was packing. For June, the average hi and low temperatures at NordKapp are 49 and 43 degrees. It's prime holiday time. Getting a room could be iffy. But I'm leaning towards leaving the tent and sleeping gear at home. If I can't find accommodations, there will be 22 hours of day light. I've done tent camping without a tent before. But never in the rain. And Norway has a high percentage of rain days. Tomorrow I'll remove the camping gear and see what things look like.
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  3. norseXL

    norseXL Northman

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    A light sleepingbag would be wice, in Norway some of the cheapest cabins (hytte) won't come with beed sheets, pillowcases etc because you normaly bring your own.
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  4. Doogle

    Doogle Do it while you can Supporter

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    I've read that they may be rather cool too. I just finished extracting all my camping gear from my baggage. No tent, sleeping bag, air mattress, or rain canopy going with me. I have a silk sleeping bag liner. I've slept on concrete parking lots and on picnic tables when desperate. I am hoping to have a roof over my head every night. I know it is the most popular time of the year and I may not find a vacant room sometimes. That's part of the ADVenture.
    #4
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  5. norseXL

    norseXL Northman

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    Al cabins I've used have (electrical) heating installed, that sleeping bag liner would be ok.
    #5
  6. yoohah

    yoohah Been here awhile Supporter

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    You will find a place to sleep (camping hyttes, hostels, cheap hotels) for every night. June is not the prime time, July and August is (because other Europeans come to Nordic countries). Just remember to reserve the room early enough during the day, noon is ok. You can use apps like Booking.com for that. If there will be rainy season, it will be cold. So better to have a good clothing for riding and camping. But if you don't want to take all the bulky stuff with you, you can always buy some cheap gloves and fleeces if needed.
    #6
  7. Doogle

    Doogle Do it while you can Supporter

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    Good to know I will probably be able to find a room-that has some heat. I'm comfortable with my packed clothing. And 4 pairs of gloves. As many pairs as I've lost, I should have them tied together with a string through my coat. A typical loss is when I stop for gas or food. I leave them on the seat or trunk. Then don't put them on when I leave.

    I've been looking for a Sim card that will work in Norway, Finland, and Germany. That's where I think most of my time will be. I wouldn't be making many calls. Only to book lodging. I would want enough data to post my ride reports when I can't get wifi. I'd prefer having one card that worked in these countries. And I am a USA citizen. That makes it more difficult. Or is there enough wifi that I can get by. I've only used Sim cards in Russia and Nepal. Neither one was worth the effort.

    #7
  8. MichaelJ

    MichaelJ Long timer Supporter

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    BTDT.

    I now ride with a bungee net stretched across the pillion seat. It normally holds a dry bag down, but is also a good place to stash something like a jacket liner or a pair of gloves when I stop. It vastly increases the probability that the object will still be there some miles later. I often stash my gloves in my tankbag. Hard to forget when they're right under your nose.

    We live and we learn. Or we don't live long.

    [​IMG]
    #8
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  9. Patek

    Patek Long timer

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    Looking forward to this adventure!
    #9
  10. Doogle

    Doogle Do it while you can Supporter

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    I have a cargo net packed. So many uses.
    And I found my International Drivers License that's good through August. Saved money, saved some time.
    #10
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  11. MaryD

    MaryD n00b

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    #11
  12. MaryD

    MaryD n00b

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    Looking forward to following your trip. I worked several weeks over the years in Norway and once in Finland (great Vodka Chocolates if you like that sort of thing ). Have fun, stay safe!
    #12
  13. TropicalDale

    TropicalDale The Adventures of Peter Pan

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    :lurk
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  14. Toten

    Toten Been here awhile

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    Location:
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    Sounds like a fun adventure is beginning!
    As a norwegian I can give some general information about norway:
    Yes it rains.
    Yes it usually is "cold" for people who think 10C is cold. Last year we had a record summer (at least in my lifetime) of 30c+ most of the summer. (for me it was horrible, way too hot unless riding or having the AC on 24/7)

    Camping is great, you can do it almost anywhere as long as you dont bother people and smile.
    Water can be drunk from any tap, unless they explicitly says you cant, which are very rare, the more rural you get the better water you find.
    Coast roads are great, but driving over Jotunheimen is also an experience.
    I would strongly advise bringing a tent, weather can change suddenly, and some protection from the wind is preferable when close to the coast.
    Temperatures swing wildly if you're driving in the mountains, I've driven over a mountain at around 4c and half an hour later I'm lower and suddenly its 20+

    Distances: Distance from Oslo to Nordkapp is roughly the same as Oslo to Rome, and our speed limits are in general WAY lower than you'd expect. If it's a highway with 1 lane in each direction, it is for the most part 80km/h. Certain roads have 90. If it's 2 lanes in each direction, it usually rises to 100, and some well defines stretches are 110.
    But those are the highways, straight and in my opinion, boring.
    And you don't want to get caught speeding.
    The fines are expensive: http://www.speedingeurope.com/norway/, a cop can AND WILL take away your drivers liscence if you exceed the speed limit by too much.
    On a motorcycle you cant be caught by the camera boxes, because norwegian law says that you need to be able to identify the driver and liscene plate, and with helmet being required, you can't be decisively identified.

    I live in southern Norway, so if you drive by give me a holler :)
    #14
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  15. Doogle

    Doogle Do it while you can Supporter

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    I will try to not speed just in case. I've read too many ticket stories. Unmarked cars aren't forgiving.
    #15
  16. Doogle

    Doogle Do it while you can Supporter

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    May 31/June 1, 2019

    My flight from Dayton to La Guardian went okay. I had a short layover. The flight from La Guardia to Philadelphia wasn't so good. We departed late. Then we tried to go to the wrong gate. Had to circle around and get into the waiting que. Should have had over 2 hours to get to my departure gate. An employer shuttled several of us through a maintenance area to our gate. The board said 4 minutes till boarding. How lucky. Prepare for takeoff. Wait. We have a problem. So we sat there for 2 hours. Gayle heard it was weather related. We heard it was a computer problem. Then a crack somewhere. Maybe there should be an investigation.

    When I got to Prague I had about 2 hours to get to the Flixbus station in downtown. Originally I should have had over 4 hours. I got my checked baggage, got some money exchanged, boarded a shuttle, and found the correct bus going to the Flixbus station. I bought my ticket for Prague to Wroclaw before I left home. Then it was another 4 1/2 hour ride.

    When I got off the bus, I went to a debit card machine. Poland doesn't use the Euro. After putting in all the request, it asked if I wanted a receipt. Yes. Then no money and no receipt. I was afraid to leave the machine thinking my money would sneak out behind my back. I decided to walk the mile and a half to the hostel, with 50+ pounds of luggage. Exhausted. Online the hostel said they only accept cash. But they had a Visa sign on the door, and accepted it. I only had USD.
    #16
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  17. Chevette

    Chevette Adventurer

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    Off to a rocky start, things will get better! Enjoy northern Europe!
    #17
  18. MichaelJ

    MichaelJ Long timer Supporter

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    The Adventure begins when The Plan falls apart. I had a Bancomat in Austria eat my debit card at 17:00 on a Friday on Day 1 of an 18 day ride.

    Whee!
    #18
  19. Doogle

    Doogle Do it while you can Supporter

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    June 2, 2019 0 miles

    A rocky start and the adventure continues.
    I took a taxi to the shop address. But nobody was home. I confirmed pickup days before leaving home. I'm guessing since the home office is open on Sundays, some less intelligent employee assumed this outpost shop had the same hours.

    I walked about a mile to a hostel. Doors are locked and nobody answered the door bell. I drug on for another half mile to the Vanilla Hostel. Very nice 3 bed and bath to myself. And this time the WiFi works in my room. I got a shower and a quick snooze and then walked into downtown. It's about a 10 minute walk. On the way, my calves and left hip told me they didn't like the extra weight I'd put on. I promised to use busses or taxis from now on.

    The town Centrum was very nice and clean. And it had many big churches. They always find me when I travel. I think this one is Basilica Saint Elisabeth.
    2019-06-02 Wroclaw, Poland 08_1559508739783_1.JPG

    Many roads were pedestrian only.I think this was a typical Sunday. Not a festival. But it was very pleasant.
    2019-06-02 Wroclaw, Poland 03_1559492019760_1.JPG

    2019-06-02 Wroclaw, Poland 01_1559492021240_2.JPG

    And the room in my castle. Hopefully my last night.
    2019-06-02 Wroclaw, Poland 14_1559492026902_7.JPG
    #19
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  20. Brick Top

    Brick Top Been here awhile

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    Doogle contact me when you are in Finland.
    #20