THE ARCTIC RIDER STORY

"Gordon Stuart (AKA The Arctic Rider) is on a mission to ride his motorbike across the Arctic Circle in every country possible, while raising money and awareness for causes close to his heart."

“It started in 2011 as a charity ride to the Arctic Circle that didn’t really go to plan, and has become a near obsession with the Arctic, an obsession with riding a motorbike, and an obsession helping organisations who help others” - Traverse Magazine, November 2017.

To date, Gordon has raised over £13,000 for charities, ridden over 14,000 miles as part of the challenges.

Gordon is an Ambassador UK-brain injury charity Cerebra and global youth leader forum One Young World, and fundraiser for special care babies charity Tiny Lives. He is keen motorcyclist, writer, and film maker.

Day 12 - Reindeer, rivers, roadworks, and riding

Hey!

Welcome to Day 12 of my Arctic Ride blog. I've been on the road so long now I'm forgetting the week days and the day numbers of my trip!

I arrived in Alta about 7pm and set up camp for the night next to a fjord with some Dutch and German bikers next to me. It's obvious I'm getting close to Nordkapp as the number of tourists is rocketing and campsites are getting full.


This morning, with a heavy heart, I said goodbye to the amazing city of Tromsø (don't worry, I'll be back), and my hosts and new friends.

It was great to get back on the bike after a rest day and I felt fully refreshed. Making use of the local knowledge, Geir suggested I take the scenic route East via the Lyngen Alps, and my it was worth the detour. Geir and Anniken road the first 30 miles with me to my first (quick) ferry, which was great fun.


I then spent the next few hours riding and stoping frequently in awe of the high mountains which were simply stunning.


As I carried onto Alta I passed what seemed like a limitless amount of waterfalls and rivers, created by the melting ice from all the mountains. There were a few times again when I ride so close to these waterfalls that my face got wet! 

However my progress was hampered by 2 of the 'R's in my title. Firstly it seems that the whole of the main E6 route is currently being revamped. I stopped at no fewer that 5 different roadworks, some if which lasted up to 10 minutes waiting. All of which were followed by riding through gravel, puddles, as sometime oil... NOT fun on a bike.

Secondly my progress was slowed by the reindeer. To be fair I'm now riding through Finnmark which is reindeer country but my oh my these little buggers are random. They run into the road on all directions and on the bike I had to slow to almost a crawl to ensure I didn't hit them which would have been bad for both of us. At one point, one ran into the road from nowhere and I'm not sure how I didn't hit it (gopro footage to follow) I think my heart is still in my mouth!


But this is all a learning curve and highlights some of the dangers of this ride!

Tomorrow I head for Nordkapp, the aim of my trip. I'm not sure how I feel to be honest. On one hand I'm SO excited to get there and achieve my aim but at the same time, after 14 months of planning and not making it here 3 years ago... I'm not sure what will fill that gap in my motorcycle brain after I've done it. A lot of my ride today I was feeling down as Nordkapp has been 'my' destination for the best part for 4 years now and, hopefully, tomorrow I'll have achived it.

But I've still got lots more riding to come after that and the small matter of 3,000 miles back home to my wife :)

Hopefully they will have wifi tomorrow at Nordkapp so I can do some social media updates.

Thanks to all for your support!

Ride safe,

Gordon

Comments

  1. Lush to hear you on Skype last night Gordy. Those reindeer sound lethal little devils. Let me know when you reach Nordkap, then I will know your on your way home to us xxxx mum xxx

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  2. Hi Gordon. It's Geir, the one with the K1200LT in Tromsoe. I hope that everything is ok. As I told you, reindeers are all over the North of Norway. And sometimes their colour is similar to the roads. And they are sometimes not visible at all. Just swallow your heart and make sure that it's in it's proper place. I'll keep track on where you are from day to day. Have fun, make friends and keep all this in your memory book. Regards from Geir.

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