25 Aug 2016 – Troll Tongue
Tue: great to catch up with Leng and even managed to squeeze in some time for an exhibition at the Oslo Rådhuset
Wed: lunched with Mette@Ullevål Stadion in Baker Hansen****one my favourite bakeries. Bought a soft light-weight water bottle NOK190 S$32, preparing for 6+hrs on the bus from OSL to get to the beginning of the trail to hike up Trolltunga over the weekend. Bringing tent, etc. Hoping and praying for dry weather. NO will NOT be anywhere near that edge.
Thu: tkx for the visit TorilA and nice to catch up, yes it is a small world that my grandson is now the proud owner of her grandson’s bike 🙂
Fri: 0945hrs bus and after 6+hrs bus-ride in mixed-weather conditions with
one change of bus@Seljestad vekstasjon and one overnight at Odda was just the beginning of this adventure. Round-trip of 676km fare on the bus for senior NOK768 S$127.
Was helped by a gracious and lovely young lady also named Amy at the Tourist Info who even drove me to my accommodations and tried to pick me back into town to catch the bus – but I started with an early walk.
Odda where life centers around a tongue! Pop 5,022, largest urban area in Hardanger. Norway’s hydro power sites and pioneer for the chemicals for cyanamide & carbide.
Amy found a room sharing bathroom and a tiny cooking area, clean and nicely located for NOK400 S$66, well-worth the price, considering what I had to pay for my hotel room later!! Owned by a couple who has this as their supplement income and 2km from Odda.
Sat: took an early walk 2km back to Odda to catch the 0915bus NOK18 S$3 for seniors to Tyssedal, 7k from Odda. Will be staying in Tyssedal Hotel after the hike NOK1,400 S$232!!! Having second thoughts about it, but too late, already paid for. Dropped off my city-stuff at the hotel and caught the hotel shuttle to the trail-head NOK100 S$16, daylight robbery, but that was the only way by 1030hrs, unless walk 7k with a full-pack on heavy traffic narrow curvy mountain roads – not my choice to start this hike.
By the time I hit the trail, it was nearly 1100hrs and looking at what was ahead of me was rather intimidating. Had these words from Bjørn – there is nothing to it, just put one foot ahead. Easier said than done with a full pack and these steps seem like a never-ending 4.5k climb from 500m to 1,250m.
Managed less than 4k by 1600hrs and decided to pitched camp. Glad I did so as the rains and winds picked up after everything were in place.
Sun: nice view to wake up to, packed up by 0700hrs to continue. Better to hike in daylight as the trolls all turn into rocks when daylight hits 🙂
Spectacular views of the area, Folgefonna Glacier, Ringedalsvatner made all the hard work worth the while.
Managed to find an angle to avoid the crowds, and while no one was trying to pose on that poor tongue. Sadly some people have little or no respect for Mother Nature. See the people in the pix, I consider this crowded and it is no wonder that crowds takes its toll on the mental being.
Arr at the tongue area about 1400hrs, 8k in 7hrs with many many rest-stops. Blessed with lovely weather. Stayed an hour to admire the views and had lunch. Being there in person and experiencing the real place is not quite the same as just looking at the pix.
Headed back to pitch camp for another night as the downhill will kill me if I do not take it SLOW! Had an eye on a site earlier and it turned out good, in-spite of more rains and winds, found some moss-bed – AT buddies will remember how I feel with moss-bed 🙂
Mon: started 0700hrs and did not get to the trail-head until 1500hrs. The downhill on those stone-steps were quite a killer and nearly fell, fortunately it was a rope-sectioned and I felt a friend in a rope! Glad to have had the chance to experience this very unforgettable adventure in good weather! Have certainly passed the stage for this kind of challenging-demanding hikes. This number in the bucket-list nearly put me in the bucket 🙂
Have only been away for a few days and sad news about the earthquakes in Italy and Myanmar in addition to the death of Sellapan Ramanathan/S R Nathan (91) Ex-President of Singapore. May he RIP. Condolences, prayers and thoughts to all family and friends effected.
Edited – 31Aug 2016
Yesterday’s Aftenposten Nyheter pp9 – to translate and summarize as best as I can: on Sunday people waited for over an hour to get on the tongue… Tourist traffic starts seriously to take its toll on the energy with the Red Cross volunteers in Odda
In this article Rune wrote about how unknowledgeable and unprepared many of these tourists are about the trail and conditions to Trolltunga. Still wondering if the 3guys from India who left with me in the hotel shuttle after 1030hrs Sat 20Aug made it there and back to the hotel the same day as they intended?? By the time my tent was pitched, app 1800hrs, there was still no sign of them.
I personally saw a tourist with city attire and no day pack or any signs of any pack, people who were wandering away from the red-T (marking for the trail), etc etc. Unable to understand anyone who tempt and play games with Mother Nature and the elements.
Stayed away from the tongue, not because of the long line, but I do not want to be a part eroding away this piece of natural beauty. Saw the new hair-pin-bend road under construction on my way up and down the beginning of this trail, thus more accessible to get to and on the tongue in future – the consequences…