We’ve been taking our time to travel down along the coastal route 44 after Pulpit Rock, rather than the shorter and quicker E39. We are very happy to have done so as it is a completely different landscape, and well worth the time. The road has been unexpectedly good – wide, little traffic, excellent viewing points, which has made traveling in torrential rain a little easier. We are currently enjoying a free carpark right next to the sea, and in the coastal centre of the Norwegian Magma Geopark. Along the way we’ve passed through Norway’s agricultural heartland, before the Anorthosite intrusions noted below.
The area is characterized by Anorthosite outcrops, which give the area its very distinctive topography. Forming the base of a Himalaya like range and formed as a huge magma chamber some 930 million years ago and 20km below the earth’s surface (tough luck to any ‘young earth’ nuts). This has now been exposed, and recently glaciated, so the landscape has all the characteristics one would expect. The rock itself is exceptionally poor in minerals, and therefore is only minimally vegetated – and that leaves fantastic views of a myriad of lakes (hello Minnesota) and countless high outcrops. We’ve had a great day cycling through the area around Egersund, making great use of a break in the rain – and well-timed too as it pelted down again after our return.
Our parking spot is also unique. This precise area is the contact zone between the tidal waves from the English Channel and from north of Scotland, resulting in no tidal range – an ‘amphidromic point’. Live and learn. And apart from all the science, it’s just a really pretty place to be.
With a bit of luck with the weather we’ll follow up with a different cycle route heading out from Hauge and Sokndal – looking forward to this!!