Senja. The word itself has an exotic kind of magic. It creates pictures in my mind of surreal peaks, green seas, a wild and exposed island, a playground for the brave. And here we are, four kayakers and skiers, on our way to brave the seas. Our plan was to camp the first night by Djevelens tanngard – the Devils Row of Teeth, the mountain range seen in the picture above. However, the ferry to Senja was cancelled, so we ended up camping on the beach in Sommarøya – the Summer Island – instead.
After a lovely dinner of reindeer and vegetable soup, we got the champagne out and withdrew to Justine and Hege’s suitably glamorous tent.
The next morning we hit the ferry to Senja and lunched at the beach overlooking The Devil’s Teeth, and then we got our kayaks out and warmed up by doing handstands and selfies on the beach.
Monica wanted to fish on the way out, so we could have fresh fish for dinner, but unfortunately she didn´t have any luck. Monica and Hege had to turn around, but Justine and I wanted to have a peak around the corner, and continued on. On the way out we met some nice fishermen, that were hauling up halibut, cod and monkfish, and we decided to try to charm some fish off them. We asked them politely if we could buy some of their fish, and they told us to come by their boathouse in an hour or so and they would give us some. Our mission completed, we kayaked on towards the lighthouse.
We kayaked quickly back to shore, and drove to the next village to look for the fishermen, and they were easy enough to find. They had been worried about us, two fragile women alone in small vessels on the dangerous open seas, and had made sure that we had turned back before they went home.
We thanked them for their concern, and assured them that we had kayaked before, and that we knew what we were doing. They cut some cod cheeks and tongues for us, and gave us some fillets of haddock and cod, and I thanked them warmly. Justine was a bit worried, as she thought they had given us the pieces they did not want themselves, and although I assured her that these were the best parts, she was not impressed. Being a national holiday, the stores were closed, so we drove by the hotel i Hamn in Senja, and asked politely if we could buy some flour, salt and pepper to fry our freshly caught fish. It worked, and happily we drove to our campsite in Ballesvika to put up our tents and fry our fish.
We served the cheeks and tongues as an appetizer, and Justine was brave enough to try – and then instantly asked for more. I guess that’s a measure of success.