it’s been a while, almost two years since Topher and I started our transafrican tour, oh man how time is running! A lot has happened for the both of us, but another longtime motorbike trip was not part of that, unfortunatly. That needs to change!
Last year I thought since we’ve been to the Cape of Good Hope and the Cape Agulhas (the most southern part of Africa) it would be a nice thing to take the Twin again for a journey to the North Cape in Norway, Europe’s most northern point (that’s not really true but very close :p).
This time Topher and also David didn’t find the time, what a pity. I scheduled three weeks for that trip, one week to get to the cape crossing Finland and two weeks to travel Norway on the way back. When I told our good friend Benny about it (you may remember him as our first and very generous host on the transafrican trip), he was very keen to join with his Kawasaki ER-5 and we teamed up :).
After a bit of planning, preparation and some repairs and upgrades of the bikes in the last six month, we finally started on the 02.07.16. Departing from Heidelberg, with a farewell in Frankfurt I met Benny in Hamburg from where we drove to Travemünde to take a ferry to Helsinki (Finland). Check-in was 21:00. Same time as the kick off of quarter finals of the European Championship, Germany vs Italy. We arrived early and got the check-in done in no time. After a short but intense run to the restaurant seeking a tv, we found out that the only one was broken… oh man, its eurochip… what the… how can this… what is wrong with those people…
Luckly Bennys mobile contract just got upgraded so we were able to stream the game and also found new friends 🙂
The ferry took of at 03:00 in morning, but we were already sleeping on our camping mattresses. We didn’t book a cabin, this is adventure 😛
Two nights and 30 hours later we arrived in Helsinki and were welcomed by the finnish summer. Heavy rain for the whole day. Our first destination was Lahti, where we wanted to visit the Hiihto museum, a skiing museum. It was closed, but we had a good look at ski jumpes and a coffee.
Back in the rain we were heading north and stopped for a burger in Jyväskylä. Our destination for the day was the camp site Hännilänsalmi next to Ilmolahti. After showering for the last 360 km we decided to take a room and skip the first night in the tents ;).
We had a good rest and started with just a gentle rain. Our first stop was Oulu. Here we parked the bikes in the middle of the town and walked to the daily market. For lunch we had awesome salmon with some kind of tiny fried fish, garlic potatoes and grilled veggies. There is also a small market hall that is somehow similar to the world famous Kleinmarkthalle in Frankfurt, only kleiner ;). We got our first reindeer, in slices, cold smoked, nice.
On the road again we had sunshine for the first time. Oh what a joy riding in Finland can be, without the rain stopper. We had a really good run today and reached Rovaniemi after 477 km. Here is the official residence of Santa Clause and we will cross the Arctic Circle, but this has to wait till tomorrow.
P.S.: After setting up the tents we finished the day with a glass of whisky, mosquitos and pouring rain for hours 🙂