I woke at 6 this morning to the sound of heavy rain, and decided to go back to sleep for half an hour to see if it would abate. This was a good plan on paper, but what I didn’t bank on was sleeping through the next alarm – by the time I got going in ernest, having packed and had breakfast, it was past 10. This may not sound like too much of a delay, but when you have 100+ miles to cover it pays to have an early start – although at least I managed to get some extra sleep.
It rained for most of the morning, but my midday blue skies had returned, and I was able to pack my rain gear away. I climbed away from the river I’d been following yesterday, and while I’ve now left Norway’s biggest mountains behind me, I still ascended to well over 500m. This set the trend for the day: I’d climb up away from a river, and then descend to follow another, before climbing again. It was hard, tiring work, but the descents were great fun, and I made good progress, recovering some of the time lost this morning.
I was heading into Hønefoss, and having covered around 80 miles feeling pleased with how the day was going, I heard the dreaded ‘ping’ from the rear wheel and knew at once that I’d broken another spoke. As I was in a built up area I turned off the main road to look for a quiet place to fix it. While doing so, I saw a sporting goods store and thought I’d have a look on the off-chance that they did bike repairs. As it turned out they didn’t, but the assistant called a local bike shop who agreed to help – after I’d mimed by problem to her as she didn’t speak English! I cycled over to the other store, and found the first proper bike shop I’ve seen in Norway – the guys there were great and sorted my wheel using proper workshop tools free of charge.
Feeling incredibly lucky I went on my way. The last 25 miles into Vickersund were tough and hilly – As soon as I arrived in town I fell upon a greasy spoon, and ordered the biggest thing on the menu. Full of chicken, I made my way to a campsite, and pitched the tent just before it started to rain.