Amazing Norway, Amazing Views
Lysefjord, Norway, 2011-06-08 12:00 by Martin
Unfortunately the weather proved too cold to hike to Trolltungan – partly because we hadn’t brought the right gear and partly because the snow hadn’t melted on the high altitude path as we had hoped. So instead we headed south on some magnificent roads, passing more splendid waterfalls and beautiful mountain views than we could count – after a long detour thanks to the crappy lonely planet maps, we arrived at Preikestolen (Pulpit Rock) visitor center, near Lysefjord. It would seem most the tourists in Norway had found their way here as well, on this perfect sunny day, but as we had taken a while coming and it had gotten afternoon already, most seemed to be heading down from the trail.

The first part of the path was really crowded and we hurried past many not so fit people, simply because it wasn’t that fun to walk in the crowds. Half way through we got to the hardest part of the trail; a ravine with big rocks that one must climb – it was somewhat fun to watch all the cruise ship tourists descending, huffing and puffing their way. The trail should take around 3 hours (we did it in 2h15m) to complete and is a mix of easy walking and some harder parts, with a few pretty steep parts. Everyone should be able to manage, if they stick to their own pace. As we got longer into the trail, the amount of people started to diminish and soon the crowds had thinned out to a more enjoyable number. The last third of the trail was very beautiful, crossing some granite plains with incredible vistas.

Finally we rounded a corner and Preikestolen unfolded itself before us; jutting out into the void it looks amazingly precarious. A fair amount of people were enjoying the views, and they were right to do so. From Preikestolen it is a vertical drop of several hundred meters, directly into Lysefjord, with the Lysefjord stretching far inland to one side, and all the way to the North Sea to the other. As with many natural sights in Norway there are no fences to stop you from doing stupid things - a really nice change to many other sights around the world. Creeping close to the edge, I couldn’t help but feeling vertigo and peering directly out over the edge was a thrilling experience. One old man, didn’t suffer from the same freights as others, as he gingerly sad right on the edge, with legs dangling in thin air and a big smile on his face.

Walking up further, one could get a great view down on Preikestolen and Lysefjorden far below. Boats were sailing on the blue waters, illuminated by the golden evening light – what a sight!

Around 6 o’clock most people had returned down and because of the long days, the sun was still high in the sky, so peace descended upon the magical place. Once again we enjoyed every bit of the atmosphere, sitting close to the edge in the warm summer evening and seeing the sun slowly set on the return hike. We took in every moment and raveled in the beauty and serenity of it all.

This was out last stop on our mini trip to Norway, but we could definitely have spent lots and lots of more time in this amazing country. We can’t recommend a trip to the western fjords of Norway more; and I believe we can say only one thing: Go now!


Fjords of Norway
Western Fjords, Norway