I had wanted to go to Norway for several years. Although it’s expensive AS FUCK, it’s also home to some of the most naturally beautiful landscapes in the world. I love hiking and had my sights set on completing the three most famous Norwegian hikes: Trolltunga, Preikestolen, and Kjeragbolten. Moreover, I wanted to hike all three in just three days. I knew this would be a challenge, not just because bagels are my life, but because finding logistical information online proved a bit tough in itself, but I was hell bent.
Before getting into logistics, let’s discuss the three hikes:
Trolltunga, also known as the Troll’s Tongue, is a roughly 10 hour long, somewhat technical hike. The first kilometer is a bitch, up super steep and slippery rocks, but from there it is quite a bit easier. This is the magic that all the pain is worth:
Kjeragbolten is a roughly 6 hour round trip hike that also gets a bit technical. You’ll probably want gloves for it, as it does involve scaling some rocks and using chains to boost yourself up. At the end of your troubles, you’ll be able to stand on a boulder, suspended between two cliffs 4,000 feet in the air.
Preikestolen is the easiest and quickest hike of the three - I legit saw 4-year-olds and blind people walking it. It’s only about 2 ½ hours round trip and basically consists of walking up steps. A heads up that this hike gets super crowded.
So here’s how I attempted to do the three hikes in three days:
I wanted to do Preikestolen in between the two more difficult hikes to give my body a break. This was very smart.
I figured why not get the longest and toughest one over with first, right? FUCKING WRONG, YOU GUYS, DON’T FUCKING DO WHAT I DID. Hiking Trolltunga on day one was a BITCH.
I flew in to Bergen (beautiful town, btw), rented a car (really, for jamming in so much in such a short period of time there is no way around this) and drove 3 hours to my Air BnB in Jondal. On the way I crashed into a woman’s garden, #mybad.
I got to my Air BnB and being the irresponsible social butterfly I am, I stayed up chatting with the host all night.
So it’s now 3am, I’m jetlagged as fuck, have slept 45 minutes in two days, and have to get in my car and drive an hour to Trolltunga to begin a 10 hour schlep. I started the hike at 4am because I wanted a head start. I had heard that there gets to be a really long line for pictures at the Troll’s Tongue when people start later, around 7 or 8am, and I wanted to just enjoy the fjord alone, to kumbaya and shit. This proved to be very clever planning. I would highly recommend you bring trekking poles and a headlamp if you’re keen on following suit.
So I schlep schlep schlep it up, following the red T’s scribbled on rocks as my guiding path (PS I had a broken foot at the time, so it was a slow schlep).
6 hours later I was at Trolltunga! Fucking exhausted, but made it!
Fuck me sideways, then I had to get back down. Norway had the coldest summer on record this year and being so high in the mountains was pretty rough. There was a lot of snow, ice, and fog that at times wouldn’t allow me to see more than a foot or two in front of me. As I approached the last few kilometers, all the rocks were slippery and covered in mud from the rainfall. I watched a woman sprain her ankle right in front of me and have to literally crawl 2km down. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt theme song dedicated to this bae.
I eventually made it back and treated myself to a fancy hotel, the Ullensvang, but really only because it’s the closest accommodation to Trolltunga (30 mins drive) and I couldn’t fucking move.
The next day, I slept in, drank hella coffee, and drove 4 hours through GORGEOUS Norway to my next Air BnB in Jorpeland.
I settled in, and went for a sunset hike to Preikestolen, which was only a 10 minute car ride away.
This was fucking brilliant. If you’re trying to do all three hikes in three days, give yourself this quick 2 hour hike/walk to recover in between the other two.
Day three, with an inexplicable giant bruise on my thigh and my foot swollen twice it’s size, I decided to conquer the motherfucking boulder, Kjeragbolten.
So okay, I fucked up.
If you stay in Jorpeland, which I highly recommend because it’s cute AF, DO NOT LISTEN TO YOUR FUCKING GPS GOOGLE MAPS WILL MURDER FUCK YOU AND MAKE YOU WEEP.
You have two options: You can drive a long ways, take the Songesand Ferry and then drive a short ways to Kjeragbolten
You can drive a short ways, take the Oanes-Lauvvik ferry and then drive a long ways to Kjeragbolten.
TAKE THE OANES-LAUVVIK FERRY.
I made the mistake of driving to the Songesand Ferry only to discover that it requires reservations and there are only two a day. I had to drive two hours all the way back to Jorpeland to get the Oanes-Lauvvik Ferry which departs every half hour and does not require a reservation.
So I get on the ferry.
And I drive another 3 hours to Kjeragbolten.
Running short on daylight but it’s okay, I’ve got a headlamp.
But the motherfucking hike is closed because of the motherfucking weather.
Now, I can’t be too mad about this because I really didn’t want to hike in those conditions. It was rainy and icy and incredibly foggy.
But I was ticked because I wanted to do all three in three days.
I wanted to get on that boulder.
BUT DON'T CRY FOR ME, ARGENTINA! Nothing gets my stubborn ass down. I have plans to hike Kjeragbolten in August 2016.