We finally found somewhere the locals don’t speak English. In Norway this is quite the feat as it seems almost everyone is bilingual (or tri or more). The country is known for it’s education system and apparently that includes working knowledge of at least two languages. Regardless, it was worth it to struggle through our poor miming, photographs and gestured explanations for a stunning walk up the side of the fjord to a beautiful lake at the base of Bondhus glacier.
We were out of bed early Monday morning, circling around Losoy (Losoyvag) to view Ole Bull’s house. He was a famous violinist in the 19th century (d. 1890) who lived much of his life abroad, returning to Norway where he built this summer home carrying many influences from contemporary Spanish architecture.
From here we had a 45 mile journey to Sunndal in NE Hardangerfjord. There was hardly any wind so we relaxed and motored all the way there, arriving around 15:00. We saw lots of ferries.
And had a go at fixing the dinghy (it’s working beautifully now)
And gazed at the Scandanavian bridges as we passed beneath them. This was the dramatic short cut through the islands (the others being inner, middle and outer routes). There was a passage only 0.2 miles across, which barely peaked our interest after last night’s mooring.
We tried the infamous Norwegian fish cakes for lunch.
Halfway up the fjord there was a massive waterfall with a bridge passing bravely in front of it.
We absolutely posed for photographs!
Even Captain Haddock gave us a smile (once we were comfortably motoring away again)
Sunndal is a little village on the southern edge of Maurangsfjord (in Hardangerfjord).
The pontoons were located next to the campsite and caravan park so we were comfortably surrounded by other travellers. Although despite N2’s insistence that sailing is like camping on water, our living conditions were much more luxurious. Plus we don’t have sand, dirt or bugs crawling around. And we don’t have to carry our equipment from place to place. And we can hide out when it rains!
We set off for our walk up the hill to the lake below Bondhus Glacier. Early settlers used to move blocks of ice from the glacier to trade with European ships. The area was settled at least 150 years ago. No roads were built up there until early 20th century but they somehow managed to get massive blocks of ice from the glacier to ships coming up the fjord. It was not clear how they managed this, maybe floating across the lake? Maybe the river connecting the lake to the ocean was more substantial so they could float them the whole way? If nothing else, the photographs of the glacier from the 1800s and early 1900s showed it stretching all the way to the lake edge, whereas today it’s a further few km up the valley.
The sun came out towards the end of our walk. The glacier is on the far side of the lake, extending up between the hills.
We passed waterfalls along the way.
And stopped for photos
I definitely wasn’t going to win this…
And took breaks
We saw some lovely trees and shrubbery
And finally made it to the far end of the lake below the glacier. It was well worth it…