It was still snowing when we woke up the next day. The husband planned our schedule based on the weather forecast. We wanted to minimise the chances of being caught in heavy snow and rain outdoors. After experiencing the drastic fluctuations in the weather conditions first-hand, we had newfound respect for Mother Nature.
After breakfast, a brief bout of sunshine appeared suddenly, and the husband quickly dashed out onto a vehicular bridge opposite our cabin to snap some pictures of the beautiful rorbu where we stayed.
What the pictures do not show is how windy it actually was. There was a gale warning that day, and the husband (along with fellow photographers) was hit by the strong winds when he attempted to take the photos on the bridge. The wind came in waves, and he alternated between holding onto the railings for dear life while shielding himself from the elements, and quickly snapping pictures during the short window where the winds became weaker. Such dedication and perseverance, just to capture the pictures. Glad they turned out so spectacular, it’s worth the arduous climb up the bridge.
We headed out towards Fredvang next, as we planned to go to Ytresand beach located about 5 minutes away from the town. The beach front is shaped like a bowl, and from the elevated parking area, we can see the turquoise waters and the distant peaks of Flakstadøy in the background. The view was breathtaking. I’ve never seen water of such magnificent hue.
We only spent about 15 minutes here as the snow soon caught up with us. As we drove back towards the main island of Flakstadøya, we stopped by a parking area after driving across the Fredvang bridges to take some pictures. Due to the bout of heavy snow the night before, the background was covered with snow, a completely new set of look from yesterday’s. This was also why we kept going back to the same places on different days as we got to witness how Mother Nature brought about changes to the landscape.
We stopped by Flakstad church just outside the small town of Ramberg. It is a beautiful timber church with a characteristic onion dome built around 1780. As heavy snow started to fall again, we decided to head back to our cabin for lunch.
After filling our stomachs, we set off for the town of Reine, a quaint little town located on the island of Moskenesøya, less than 10 minutes drive away from our Rorbu. It is probably one of the most photographed town on the Lofoten islands, largely due to the beautiful combination of red and white fishermen’s huts lined along the shoreline and the steep granite mountain – Reinefjorden.
One of the best photo spot in Reine is at a parking area right as you turn off the E10 onto the small road towards Reine. We saw many photographers there whenever we passed by. The husband said that the best photo spot is actually atop Reinebringen (you have to climb up a really steep and slippery track to get to the summit – it’s dangerous!), which rewards you with a fantastic aerial view of Reine. Unfortunately, the windy and snowy weather conditions meant that inexperienced hikers / climbers like us wouldn’t survive the climb up the mountain without breaking our bones. This also gives us more reasons to plan for a visit (hopefully not so far in the future) back to the Lofoten Islands!
We headed to the neighbouring town of Sørvågen, another small fishing village but with a relatively large Sørvågvannet Lake in the town centre. The lake was still frozen when we arrived (at the end of March – isn’t it supposed to be spring already?!), and we stopped by to revel in the wondrous sights of this winter wonderland.
We moved on towards the village of Å (actually pronounced as “Oh”), which is the southernmost town on the island of Moskenesøya. The name means “river” or “stream”, and the town is actually the starting point of the main road, E10, which goes all the way from Å to Luleå in Sweden (with a total distance of 850km!).
We reached Eliassen Rorbuer just in time to witness the beautiful sunset in the comfort of our cabin. The dying embers of the sun peeked through the narrow slits of the thick rain clouds, lighting up the landscape in rays of yellow and gold.
We thought that we had already seen all the beautiful sights on the islands. We were wrong. The green lady decided to put up a fleeting show just as we were about to retire to bed. Kudos to the husband who switched off all the lights in the living room to search for signs of aurora activity. How lucky we were to be able to see the northern lights again, without having to step out of the cabin to look for them, thereby exposing ourselves to the elements!
To be continued…