On gravel roads – from Sokna to Golsfjellet

Golsfjellet at its best

My fingers are freezing cold, and I am happy to have finished the transport section on this morning’s route. I have left Rv 7 at Sokna and heading for Strömsoddbygda and the first gravel road taking me to Viddalen over to Hedalen. There are still some kilometres on asphalt before I can enjoy the gravel road. The day is still young and it’s quiet around me as I sit overlooking the river. Compared to the busy life I left behind in Oslo, this is so relaxed. Sokna is only some kilometres down the road, but I have he feeling of being in the middle of nowhere and the stress from the city and the job has vanished.

I have been looking forward to this trip for a long time. Or more rightly; I have been looking forward to a long day on the motorbike. That it turned out to be this trip was just a coincident as I got a KL 250 to my disposition for some days. With an empty Saturday all to my self and a weather forecast promising perfect weather this looks like a perfect day to explore some gravel roads.

October mornings can be quit chilly, but I have prepared my warmest clothes and the alarm was optimistic set to seven o’clock. The latter was not necessary. By half past six I had finished my breakfast and made some sandwiches to bring along. The camera and all the rest I would need for a long day on the road was already prepared.

This morning was chilly and the fields were covered in glittering white frost. Over Sollihögda the frost bite the chins. The KL 250 is easy to live with. The engine has just enough power, but the riding position suits me well and despite the cold I have had a comfortable ride. The tires are better suited to gravel than asphalt, at least I hope so. The tires don’t give the direct contact with the road and so far I have not been inspired to explore their limits in the curves. The rest by the river is welcome, and I am warming now.

I take off the mittens and put on gloves more suitable to the active ride to Viddalen. Mittens are for transport only; on the more demanding road to Strömsoddbygda and the gravel roads onwards I need better contact with the bike.

I pass the last settlement before I reach the toll gate at the start of the gravel road. I put the toll in an envelope and head towards Viddalen. I carefully for the first kilometres, then as confidence raise the speed rise as well and even if I still ride carefully the ride is active enough to keep warm. I get used to the rear wheel drifting out of the corners. At Buvatnet there is a Y-crossing. The left leg would have taken me to Gulsvik and Rv 7.I take to the right to Viddalen and Hedalen.

The clear blue sky and the naked trees are reflected in the black water of Buvatnet. A duck makes rings in the water as it dives and surface some meters further out. The sun is playing with the mist on the other shore. The mist will not be there for long. The sun sits low, but I am surprised by how it warms. I can feel the sun warming through the leather suit. The only sound is from the rivers and now and now and then from a bird. I am close to Vassfaret and feel the sound of the wilderness. I have no hope of seeing the Vassfar-bear though.

The road is narrow and bumpy. On some parts there are just two tracks to follow. I have flow zone now. By now I have worked myself warm. Can’t think of anything I rather do than ride the bike. I have the road by myself over to Hedalen, no traffic no cars, I am alone. It is quiet in Hedalen too, I pass the old stave church, by the local store there is some traffic, and then I have the road all by myself again.

In Gol I just travel through. The climb from Gol to Golsfjellet is

easy and relaxed. The KL hums along and seems to enjoy the relaxed pace. There is no reason to let the little single work on high revs, which force me to use the gearbox diligent. The little Kawasaki which two days ago felt under powered is at home and feels perfect on the gravel roads and the curvy country roads.

Golsfjellet have a network of gravel roads making most parts of the mountain area accessible by bike. I pass the hotel Oset at the end of the lake Tisleifjorden. There are some snow where the sun don’t reach. The road is mostly frozen and solid, but some parts where the sun is warming the road is greasy and slippery. I stop by a barn and enjoy the heat from the sun I eat. Never ever does the sandwich taste as good as now. I take a nap before I continue exploring Golsfjellet.

This is what the Kawasaki is made for. It hums confident as we criss cross our way over Golsfjellet with rear wheel spitting sand and stone out of the bends. I am enjoying myself on my level. My riding is more fluent now and I my riding is more relaxed too. I have crashed on gravel once and got away without injury or any damage to the bike. But it’s still with me like it was recently, not 9 years ago.

The sun is setting and I aim for Gol via Lykkja on the north side of Tisleifjorden. From Gol I take Rv 7 to Gulsvik.

The KL is bored by the asphalt and I take gravel road via Buvatnet and Strömsoddbygda to Sokna. The climb from Gulsvik and the lake Kröderen is fast and the rear wheel leaves wide tracks out of the serpentines. The single cylinder 250 is just perfect for my level. When I enter the Rv 7 at Sokna and start on my way home I feel content. This day became what I had hoped for. I can still recapture the good feeling from this autumn day on Golsfjellet in 1982.

Useful link:

Golsfjell Fjellstue

NB! Google Maps may change a route if it includes a road that is closed (e.g. closed during the winter) at the time you are viewing the route.