North Cape 71°10 21

Trip Start May 07, 2005
Trip End Ongoing

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Friday, September 16, 2005

Fishing (Kim)

Honningsvåg is a small town in Finnmark near the famous North Cape or Nordkapp. North Cape is both a place and the name of the region in Finnmark. It is the furthest North you can travel by road in Norway. If you are willing to hike an additional 18 kilometers you can reach the actual furthest North point of Norway.

We came to the region and stopped off 24 kilometers away from this spot for a little 3 day fishing venture. We needed to test the merits of our new telescoping pole. We are very pleased with how small the pole reduces in size to fit in our packs but we wanted to be sure it could really catch fish.

Dave found these quaint little cabins to rent for a few days. The owner was this tourist weary (grumpy) guy called Frodo who was none to happy to pick us up from the port and drive us out to the cabins. I could take it all in stride especially after I saw the cabins. They were much nicer than I imagined a fishing cabin would be. The original rustic cabins had been redone. The interiors were a nice piney looking wood for ceiling and walls. Frodo had photographs of the area on the walls and small fishing art deco. Everything we needed from linens to cooking supplies was fully provided. My biggest worry was heating. The temperatures were colder than any winter in Texas. That area of concern was ill founded. The little propane heater was deceptive just by appearance. We had to turn it off nightly or suffer through a stuffy, hot night. The cabin was situated at the entrance to the private pier on a Fjord. Outside was a picnic table and all the necessary equipment for cleaning fish from dasterdly looking knives to a sink station. We had all we needed for the perfect fishing adventure. No license was necessary as fishing in Fjords in Norway is free to all.

We had fished with Anne but we were not totally sure we could do this alone. That thought quickly left as Dave caught the first fish within the hour. I caught my own share of mostly cod. Cleaning was another story. I tried one but when the headless body started to wiggle...icky poo! There is a reason I am not a meat eater so I find no shame in this repulsion to this aspect of fishing. Dave and I struck a deal and he became our official cleaner of fish, we both caught, and I mostly cooked them. We had the 'Forrest Gump' kitchen of fish cooking open for business. One day we even had fish tacos! There were 3 varities of fish we caught - cod, perch, and haddock. The haddock tasted best by far. All in all we caught and ate 8 fish. We threw the small ones back and kept those big enough to fillet. At one point Frodo dropped by and taught Dave how to fillet and gave us pointers on casting and cooking. I hooked several large cod but the line broke with these heavy guys.

We almost opted out of finishing the journey up to North Cape. Even with only 24 kilometers left to go the expense was outrageous. By bus or by rental car it did not matter. Luckily we overheard another tourist complaining about this very thing. We teamed up with him and rented a car together to get the overall cost down. This was a much better thing for all of us as it allowed us to take some side trips to some of the scenic fishing villages. We kept stopping the car to get closer to the Reindeer. This was Lappland afterall and these beasts ruled it. I had never seen one before except in pictures at Christmas. North Cape was nicely developed with a large visitor center and museums and a great IMAX of the region. In days before the road led up to this far Northern cliff people had to sail and then climb the cliff to get to it. Even some famous people undertook such a crazy journey just for the honor of saying they had made it. I was quite happy to reach it by car. I was even happier when we returned to port caught our next Hurtigruten ship and sailed on to Kirkenes. The thermometer readings hovered around 5 degrees centigrade. From Kirkenes we got to catch our plane to sunny Oslo...whoohoo! I am glad I made it so far North but I am not sure I want to go much above 71°10`21 anytime soon.
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