Trolltunga is the now famous rock formation hanging 700 meters above Ringedalsvannet in Tyssedal, Norway. As the hike is quite challenging, this article will let you know how to do the hike and what to expect.
This summer I finally made it to Trolltunga myself. The weather was perfect; sunny and dry. And as I’d like to share my own experience, this article will contain some recommendations and suggestions for how to plan your trip beforehand.
First of all: hiking in the high mountains of Norway is nothing like a “walk in the park”. It can be strenuous, it can be cold and you might overestimate your own physical condition. This particular hike is rated “black” and is only recommended for experienced hikers.
Therefore I recommend you to get acquainted with the guidelines as written by the local tourist information and the Norwegian official tourism board, Visit Norway. Stop to read the information offered on the signs along the path towards Trolltunga. Please also take time to see the short informational video at the bottom of this article before you go.
How to get to Trolltunga
The starting point of the hike is the parking lot in Skjeggedal, near Odda. You can get to Odda by bus or car from Oslo, Bergen or Stavanger, for instance.
From Odda by bus: Trolltunga Shuttle to Tyssedal takes you to the starting point of the hike. The prize is 250,- Nkr return ticket if you buy the tickets on board. You may also buy online here, for a slightly bigger fee. See more about schedules etc. here
From Odda by car: Drive the narrow roads from Odda to Skjeggedal parking lot. Parking is Nkr. 500,- (per July 2018). The upper parking lot was already full at 7 in the morning when I arrived by bus.
Most people stay in and around Odda, which is a little village at the end of the Sørfjorden, a part of Hardangerfjorden. You may choose to stay in a camp site, at hostels / guest houses and hotels.
For those who would like a different experience, it is also possible to do the hike carrying a tent and stay close to the path for the night. This way you can do the hike in two days, and it will give you a different experience.
ad for booking.com
Suggested hotels in and near Odda
This hotel is located by Lake Sandvevatnet in the village of Odda, close to the Hardangervidda National Park and Folgefonna Glacier Park.
Tyssedal Hotel is by the Hardangerfjorden at the foot of the Hardangervidda Mountains, 6 km north of central Odda.
Dating back to the 1880s, Hardanger Hotel is situated in central Odda and overlooks the beautiful Sørfjord.
How hard is it to hike?
Doing the hike in one day, will take you approximately 10 – 12 hours. As the hike is about 28 km long return, and the elevation is 700 meters, with steep parts, the trail has been marked as “black”. But since elevation is quite steep at the beginning, the hike will get somewhat easier after about the first hour or so.
When to do the hike
It is only possible to do the hike from the middle of March to the middle of October. If you wish to do the hike without a guide, you may do so from the middle of June to the middle of September. Between October and March it is not possible to do the hike due to danger.
Remember: Do not start the hike later than 10 in the morning, due to the time and length of the hike.
Trolltunga Active offer various ways to explore the surrounding nature, and they also do guided tours to Trolltunga. Check out their website here.
Can you stay in the mountains?
You can carry a tent and sleep in the mountains on dedicated areas. Follow the information on the signs along the trail for where not to camp. If you do choose to carry a tent, you are able to stay closer to the Trolltunga, and should be able to get a picture of yourself at the tip without a too long line ahead.
What to wear
Wear water proof hiking boots, wind- and waterproof hiking clothes and warm clothes. If sunny, wear a cap and sun glasses, as well as sun protection. But if it is cold, on the other hand, wear a scarf, a hat and gloves. Do also wear an extra layer of warm clothes depending on temperature.
What to bring – food/drink
As this is a strenuous hike, you will need more food than any regular day. Therefore you should make sure to bring enough food and drink for the full day. You are also advised to drink about three liters of water, depending on the weather conditions. As you may refill your bottles in the rivers in the mountains, you may carry 1,5 to 2 liters of water with you.
What to bring – clothes
To prepare for changing weather conditions, bring an extra layer of wool, extra socks, a hat, scarf and gloves. Remember to check the weather forecast and know that weather conditions can change quickly in the mountains.
What to bring – gear
As you will see spectacular nature along the hike, remeber your camera. I also recommend to bring a power bank for your cellphone. (Note that there is no / limited cell phone reception along the hike). Band aid, hiking sticks, flash lights, map and compass can be handy, depending on the weather conditions. You should also bring a water proof container for your cell phone.
DO NOT TAKE THE HIKE IN BAD WEATHER CONDITIONS.
Best of luck with the trip. I hope you have a wonderful day!
Please also take the time to see this film made by Visit Norway