Nordkapp: Now That’s Done, Let’s Get the Kettle On! Four Wheeled Nomad

Kannesteinen Rock


By  Four Wheeled Nomad: Words by Lisa Morris, images by Jason Spafford

 

There is nothing more criminal than waste, and there’s nothing worse than wasting time. With that at the forefront, Norway was about to be wrapped up in reaching our trip’s first official milestone: Nordkapp: the North Cape of our ‘Cape to Cape’ expedition on The Mega Transect. But not before spending a calming night at Kannesteinen Rock. The sea has been beating against this lump of rock for thousands of years, shaping it into the mushroom-like appearance it bestows today. It was utterly sublime, one of the most ravishing rocks I’ve ever seen.

 

iKamper Skycamp


En route and northbound, there’s nothing that soothes me more than watching birds, but I wouldn’t call myself an obsessive twitcher. Unlike Jason’s skills in bird identification, mine are nothing to write home about – but standing at elevation in Lofoten with the binoculars to witness these incredible creatures swoop and glide above us or peck their way across the fjord-serrated shoreline is one of the most rewarding ways I know to experience the natural world.

 

Reindeer


At the place we saw hundreds of seabirds going about their business, I huffed and puffed up to the cliff face like an old train. After settling down on a spot bearing a good vantage point, a four-year-old German boy turns to his dad, cocks his head and asks emphatically, “Papa, so what do the birds like to do here?”  



Nordkapp


Admittedly, the last 500 miles northbound to Nordkapp were a mixed bag of what mostly felt like killing Norwegian Krone on diesel for the sake of a photograph. Tempered at least when we retracted all thoughts of regret once we descended on the country’s Wuthering Heights, bleak roads to the top. Hurrah, some drama in the skies at last!…be careful what you wish for. Norway, it seemed, had one last hand to play before she’d let us leave.

 


A heavy drizzle was set to stay for the long haul, it’d mean a night hunkered down in the double cab, which coupled with the gusting winds, dictated battening down the hatches. Why risk our home – the rooftop tent faring hopelessly in wind-force gales? A landscape of blind-wrapped fog engulfed our surroundings, swallowing us whole. It was gone midnight when the Krone-laden kiosk closed – demanding a $65 entrance fee to lay eyes on Nordkapp’s globe. At no-charge, out we emerged in the wee hours of cloaked darkness.

 


Raindrops bounced angrily off my umbrella as if they were trying to punch through the fabric. Taking the phone snap in my mind’s eye, I registered the prospect as wishing to catalogue the trip as much as for posterity. In reality, it involved pinning our location and activating the GPS to pick our way over the flat but obscured few hundred yards to the globe, so bad was the fog. When you’re on unfamiliar terrain, it’s just sensible to take directions.

 


Comical really, sleep drunk and getting almost lost during what should have entailed making a quick beeline to a landmark that’s impossible to miss. Utterly adrift, the North Cape had seemed so close, yet we were clawing through a thick fog in who knows which direction. Laughter rolled leisurely out of my mouth, like the great banks of mist that spilled opaquely over the landscape.

 


Not exactly a momentous occasion when the globe emerged at Nordkapp but neither was it totally anti-climatic. Jason just stood there brewing like a coffeepot. I distinctly recall him betraying no sadness when it came to parting from the place. High winds prevailed, driving rain lashed down, cobwebs more than the mind blown. A low-voltage moment akin to, ‘Oh good, now that’s done let’s make a sharp exit and put the kettle on’. fourwheelednomad  


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