Man waiting at bus stop

Bohusleden: Day 5

Route: Stora Hästevatten to Trollhättan (via Lilla Edet)

Morning was bright and calm. We fell into our usual routine of brewing tea and eating breakfast by the lake, dusting the forest off our gear, repacking our bags etc.

Man sitting by lake with stove
Stora Hästevatten
Two cups of tea
Frukost te
Feet standing at clear water
Stora Hästevatten
Reflection of trees in water
Stora Hästevatten
Wooden shelter with rustic benches
Stora Hästevatten

Man walking along road with bag

We began our journey back to civilisation to refuel. There hadn’t been any opportunity to pick up food since day 2, so we were looking forward to it. A lack of refuel points had been factored into our original planning of course, and we also packed a couple of extra meals in case we were delayed for any reason.

Wooden Bohusleden sign

Butterfly balancing on flower
Dark green fritillary

A few people were out picking berries and mushrooms from the forest lining the deserted road. We managed a passing chat in Swedish and the lady proudly showed us her lingonberry haul.

Small pink flowers

We hiked to a bus stop in Broan, which was literally just a pole with a timetable. Other than a long road with two houses nearby, there was nothing!

Bus stop sign

We were early for the bus and figured we’d just sit and wait for a while. Thirty minutes later, heavy rain came. There was no shelter so we had to hide under some trees just off the road. It rained… and rained… and RAINED.

Man jogging on the spot
Jogging on the spot to keep warm

Bags with waterproof covers on

Dark and rainy lanscape

Our t-shirts got soaked because we hadn’t been able to get our waterproof jackets on quickly enough. But we thought it would be okay because the rain would pass (there had been many fleeting showers so far) and the bus would come. Neither of these things happened.

We stood in the rain for 2 hours and got so wet that our fingertips wrinkled. When we’d lost all hope of the bus arriving, Scott tried to book a taxi. However, we couldn’t secure a booking because we were in the middle of nowhere. That left us with three options:

  • A: lay down and die at the side of the road
  • B: walk to Lilla Edet (2.5 hours of road walking in the rain)
  • C: ask one of the nearby houses for help

Option A was tempting because I was really hungry at that point, but we picked option C. I asked if they would help us book a taxi with a local company but he asked his son to drive us to Lilla Edet instead! Such a kind gesture that really saved our day.

Pizzeria sign
Sannegårdens Pizzeria

No rain in Lilla Edet, thank goodness. We called in at a café because we were desperate for lunch and a hot drink at that point.

Tables in a café
Chocolate cake on plate

Then it was time to board a bus to Trollhättan.

Man waiting at bus stop

We stayed at Hotell Bele for a night and were overjoyed to find free tea, coffee and cake downstairs. Just what hungry hikers need! We quickly got to work washing some clothes in the sink, reorganising our bags and taking our first hot shower in a few days. A hot shower with soap was total bliss.

Pillow and blanket on bed

If you know me if real life, you’ll know I LOVE chips (or fries depending on where you’re from). Scott joked about eating chips being one of the first things we could do back in civilisation and it became a done deal. We headed straight to Max. The layers of sound were quite overwhelming after several quiet days in the depths of the forest — people talking loudly, music playing and kitchen machines constantly beeping.

Fries on a tray with dip

Early evening, Scott checked the weather again and noticed warnings had been issued for the last two days at the end of our trip. A yellow warning, followed by a red warning (flooding and wind) in the area we were hiking. We worked out we could safely do one more full day of hiking before taking an alternative route and heading home early. Sitting here now, knowing the chaos that weather bought, I can tell you we absolutely made the right call.

Row of wooden buildings

Names carved into large stone

We walked into town to see Trollhättan sluss and find dinner — an Indian restaurant was the number one choice because we fancied something flavourful and filling.

A trip to ICA was the final to-do of the day. We bought chocolate covered marzipan, Haribo, deodorant (I had an allergic reaction to the one I packed and my armpits were raw) and some spray to hide the damp smell in Scott’s hiking shoes.

I don’t remember falling asleep that night, only making a pleasurable groaning noise when I clambered into bed and pulled the duvet over myself. WHAT A DAY. Read day 6.

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