Hiking St.Olavsleden : Sundsvall/Selanger to Matfors 

This morning (19/08) we left our accommodation and made our way to Selanger to begin our hike to Trondheim. We were to start at the church, where we had been invited to meet the priest beforehand who told us about the history of the trail and helped us take our first steps and get the first stamp in our pilgrim passport.

We walked for about 2 kilometres in the pouring rain before we came to a large farm house which had a sign for coffee. We took the opportunity to have a break under a gazebo but we learned that the outdoor cafè was closed today. A girl came out of the farmhouse to come and see us and said we could stay at the cafè for a while and she would give us coffee and cake anyway. We sat with Selena for a while and helped her mend the leaking gazebo. She introduced us to her goats and her little dog.

We said goodbye to walked on towards Matfors, but it was not long before we were stopped by a car driving past who turned out to be Tommy, a man who regularly offers free Fika (a Swedish cake and tea break) to passing pilgrims. He said he had cake for us when we reached his house along the way. We eventually reached a house with a sign outside and knew we’d arrived at his house.

He invited us in to meet him and his wife, where we had tea and sandwiches. A little while later, two Norwegian sisters arrived, one of which would be Pilgrim 100 to pass this year (I am number 99! 3rd from the UK). We sat together for a while before making our way to Matfors.

We eventually reached Matfors, where we would be staying with Rania from Rowantree.se, her partner and tiny 8 day old kittens. We chatted over a homemade dinner about our plans for the next day where Rania would begin walking with us for a couple of days.

We have had such a warm welcome from everyone we have met along the trail, everyone is so kind and helpful. It is so nice to feel that you have this kind of support along the way.

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