Day 11. Spangereid to Sønge (Lunde).

Distance 73.2km. Average 17.4km/h.

The day started sunny and a good hour or so was spent drying the tent and gear out and making food. I sat in the sun whilst we hard-boiled the eggs we had bought the day before and not used. Damae just lay down enjoying the sun and we spent a little time gathering our energies before packing up and leaving.

Once back on the road the coast was beautiful, reminding me of the Croatian Adriatic in places. If I remember correctly although there were no big climbs we went up and down a lot. One of those deceptive sections on the map. However we decided (I think to avoid a steep off road section) to take the alternative route via Sjølingstad, and were rewarded with a reasonable ride and were pleasantly surprised when we rounded a bend and saw amongst the wooden houses a large brick factory.

It turns out that this building now housing a museum was originally built as a textile factory, making fabric to traditional and new designs. The first building was made from wood which eventually burned down, the second was made of more durable brick. We discovered that you could take a tour but that they started every second hour. We'd arrived at 12-30 so the next tour would have been at 2:00pm but waiting would have delayed us too much. Behind the factory there was also a small route you could walk as part of the museum. Next time we pass by we'll take the tour.

In the end we settled for looking through the giftshop and a cup of coffee whilst we ate our lunch. In the gift shop Damae bought a wool hat with a design which is a hallmark of the factory and I bought a nice tee-shirt with a similar design. All pretty lightweight and usable on the trip.

The coffee with lunch was welcome and we sat outside in the midday sun eating sandwiches and chocolate. The weather was once again a bit too hot to cycle but we were not complaining. In fact apart from showers on a couple of the days the weather turned out to be one of the many surprises of the trip. Ironically after all the jokes from Jeroen and Miriam about rain in Norway, it apparently rained every day we were away in Utrecht.

A short while later we stopped in Mandal to get some money out of a cash machine, and also to buy an extra set of brake blocks (we had brought enough for one bike). After a year and a half cycling in the Netherlands we had had no appreciable wear on the blocks, 700km of the NSCR were enough to wear the brakes close to the metal. The shop took only a little finding, and the blocks were bought quickly.

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