Day 4: Trolltunga
When we woke up this morning, there were periods of rain predicted throughout the day. Instead of letting that stop us, we followed the old Norwegian saying, “Det finnes ikke dÃƒÂ¥rlig vÃƒÂ¦r, bare dÃƒÂ¥rlig klÃƒÂ¦r!” which translates to, “There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothes!”
Packing layers and rain coats, we made sure we had clothes for all the weather could throw at us. We fueled up with eggs and bacon, as well as coffee of unknown strength (because I can’t read the Norwegian serving sizes on the jar).
When we arrived to the Trolltunga parking lot at 8am, it was nearly full. Trolltunga (or Troll’s Tongue) is a rock formation that juts out from the cliff and is a popular destination for hikers. It takes about 10 hours round trip, so people tend to start early. The first 4km is an 8% grade gravel/dirt road with switchbacks. After that, the trail mixes it up with steep stone steps, bald-faced rock sections, giant boulders, mud, water, snow, you name it!
The weather was nice to us, with only a few passing showers as we went up. As expected, the views were spectacular.
We made good time and arrived at Trolltunga after four and a half hours. Because it is so popular, and because the ledge is fairly small, only one group of people are allowed on at a time, resulting in a line. After waiting for our turn, we asked our line mate to take our picture for us, but she couldn’t get the camera to work. Instead, she took some on her own phone and I gave her my email, but she spoke very little English, sooooo…. check back to find out if those ever arrive! 🙂 In the meantime, here’s what the place looked like:
Even without going out on Trolltunga, the area provides incredible views overlooking the Fjord and cliffs. Plus, you are still up really freaking high, so if you want the same adrenaline rush that going on Trolltunga might provide, uh, just look over the edge.
It was pretty windy and chilly at the top, so we hiked back down a few kilometers before stopping for lunch. It was lovely for a few minutes, then some real rain came in. We finished up, put on our rain coats, and got back on the trail for our long journey down.
Again, the rain passed fairly quickly, and the sun came out for the majority of the remaining hike. The strenuous uphill hike was still hard on the way down for our weak American legs. Judging by the looks and speed of fellow hikers, every day is leg day in Norway. When we finally made it back to the switchback road, a few cars drove by, seemingly taunting us. We successfully finished the 28km (17 miles!) hike in 10 hours and 10 minutes. Hopefully I will be able to walk tomorrow.
Back at the house, we made a quick dinner and moved as little as possible.
Tomorrow is mostly a rest day. Our only plan is to drive to Bergen and explore the town.