Day 12-3. Florø to Barmen contd.
Unlike the first ferry of the day this one was stately and restrained. This was fine by us as it gave us more time to enjoy the clear skies and blue fjord all around us. The view across to Maløy kept my attention for most of the trip as I watched us approaching the bridge. This is an amazing structure high enough to allow large sea-going vessels and tall ships to pass under it. The ferry went under it. An hour later the road over the bridge would be our way of leaving the town.
Disembarking we made our way slowly towards town, a left turn towards the bridge to take us back on to National Cycle Route 1. We decided to do a small amount of shopping for milk and ice cream and sat outside near the waterfront taking in the atmosphere. Maløy is not a particularly big place, and I wondered what it was like in the depths of winter, for today it was bustling and full of people. All around us, hospitality tents we going up, electricity cables and hoses being hooked up to make sure all ran smoothly. Although Maløy was hosting the Tall Ships Festival this year, we were actually a day too early. We remember seeing one in the harbour as we approached.
It was now too warm to be cycling: we'd arrived at two thirty and by a quarter past three were making our way to the bridge. We made the mistake of following the footpath (just visible in this picture) which was not only narrow but also separated from the road by a wheel high crash barrier. The railings on the outside edge were disconcertingly low and there was nowhere to go if you lost your balance. Once on it we quickly caught up with a small girl cycling across the bridge. There was no way to overtake her and we were not able to get our bikes over the barrier to cycle on the road. We decided that the next time we used this bridge we'd cycle on the road and spend more time enjoying the amazing views of the Vågsfjord.
Once off the bridge, after a short descent we started climbing again out of town. At the top of the first climb I waited for Damae and fell into conversation with an English guy who was a member of the crew of the tall ship in the harbour. He said that they'd had problems with a lack of wind, and more ships should have arrived by now. His tour ended here as he was to fly back to the UK. It seemed like a great way to make a living, he certainly enjoyed himself.
This small act of socialising over and done with we carried on. The next act of navigation would be to make a left turn after a tunnel. We arrived at the tunnel about a half hour later and cycled through it together. This was one of the less appealing tunnels with this sign, warning the unwary that the walls were not flat, sticking out at just the right height to damage the head or face of an unsuspecting cyclist. Fortunately this was the only cyclist unfriendly aspect as the jagged edges of the tunnel walls appeared to have been smoothed with spray on concrete.
The left turn took us back onto the RV616 heading towards the curiously named Flatraket. This was much quieter than the RV15 we'd left Maløy on. A couple of minutes later what looked like a lake appeared looking very blue and inviting. It was actually a small nameless fjord and brought with it a cooling breeze. The undulating nature of the road meant that we could not get into a good rhythm today. Just before we entered Flatraket there was a second shorter tunnel which climbed rather steeply. We both were travelling so slowly that our lights flickered rather than giving a steady beam. We were visible at least which was good.
Within a half hour we'd decided to take a proper break after having passed through Flatraket and Nordpollen. It was now about five in the evening and round here, in contrast with other places we'd passed through, the few shops we saw were all shut. We realised that we'd run our food stocks down but it was too late to do anything about it now. Still we stopped for a cuppa and some chocolate at a lovely lookout point and wondered if any of the islands we could see were Barmøy. Our musings were inconclusive but we did know that it we must be pretty close to it.