Tonight we’re enjoying a rare bit of shelter in a little hut at a campsite a few kilometres short of Oppdal. We’ve found some wonderful wild spots to pitch our tents across the mountain stretch, but as we dropped back into the valleys again, it seemed like a good time for a shower and a general recharge. Apart from anything else, it was a thirty-kilometre day to get here, which with the amount of weight we’re carrying feels like a long way.
The day provided yet another illustration of the outrageously good luck we’ve had with the weather over the past few days. Before we hit Dovrefjell, a whole string of people had warned us about the harsh conditions up there (especially concerning since Norwegians, in my experience, seem rather more prone to understating the risks of the outdoors than overstating them), but for the most part we’ve been walking with the hot sun on our backs and a cool breeze on our face. The nights have been dry and calm, and we’ve watched rainstorms drift down the next valley or dissipate just as we reach them.
This afternoon, inevitably, a storm finally caught us, with hail hooning it down and lightning hitting far too close for comfort, but as the storm reached its peak, we came across a tiny wooden chapel built up on the hillside overlooking the distant ski runs of Oppdal, and we sheltered, dripping, on its stepped wooden seats until the weather blew over.
This evening, as we look out from our cabin after a heavy meal of tinned pasta and meatballs that look a little like severed testicles (verging on gourmet in the context of the sachet meals that general grace our bowls, though I have lately found myself pining for a lamb roast at Glebe Cottage) the evening sky is a luminous red colour. Does this bode more good luck for tomorrow, do we think?