Lofoten Day 2: Reine and Kvalvika

Our second day in Lofoten was by far the longest, most tiresome, yet amazing day. Somehow we packed in all the things that had drawn me to go to Lofoten into one. We woke up in a steaming hot tent, sun high in the sky, and had breakfast overlooking the ocean. I donned my bike shorts for the first time, and felt incredibly silly. We cycled to Reine, stopping for views along the way, and right before reaching the little town we saw the trail up Reinebringen, probably the most visited mountain on the islands. At the tourist office we had been advised going there, which had disheartened me, since it was one of the things I had really wanted to do. We had decided against it because of the warnings about the trail being dangerous, but when we got there there were so many people on the trail that we decided it must be safe enough for us. The warning told about loose rocks and steep climbing, so there was a danger that rocks would come tumbling down from climbers above and hurt you. We consider ourselves amongst the more experienced of hikers, and figured it would be safe for us. On the trail we saw all kinds of people, and it became clear why the warnings had been issued. Chasing the views over Reine, people who perhaps had never climbed a hill before were crowding the trail, camera in one hand and water bottle in the other. I do not exaggerate when I say that the trail was steep, on several parts we used both hands to climb and steady ourselves. We were up in 40 minutes, and the view is perhaps the best view I’ve ever seen. I do not think there is any point trying to describe it, and even the photographs I took can’t do it justice. But let me say this: there were lakes surrounded by mountains, there were fjords, there were small islands with houses that was connected by bridges and surrounded by an ocean with turquoise patches.

After lunch and some rest we cycled for 30k to Kvalvika, where we packed tent, sleeping bags and sleeping mats, as well as the clothes and food we’d need for one night, and hiked over a small ridge to a beach where we were going to sleep. The beach is a popular overnight spot because it faces the west, so earlier in the summer the midnight sun would be visible all night, and we would get a sunset. We raised out tent, ate some bread and set out on another hike. Ryten, at 500 something metre, gave a stunning view of the beach and of the steep cliffs on the side. The beach was a little nestle stuck between tall mountains, and it was covered with small coloured circled where other tents were pitched. It was a cold night, and the wind came in strong from the sea. I had left a lot of my warmer clothing by the bikes, so I was cold and slept poorly. Yet I cannot imagine a better day than what we did, despite having a long bike ride the following day with legs sore form hiking mountains and cycling all day. It was by far the best day of our trips, and in itself a reason to go through the trouble of dissembling our bikes, shipping them across the country, putting them together again, and having to wear bike shorts.



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