The Update #15 – Eat, Sleep, Hike and Repeat

by Jasper and Lonneke
25 July 2021
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When typing this update, it feels incredible that we’ve only been in Norway for 1.5 weeks. We’ve done so much and seen so many beautiful things that it feels like we’ve been here for at least a month. And this week is off to a good start. With the Trolltunga as a big fat highlight.

To get here we drove to the next stop, Odda. On the way we made a pit stop at a very beautiful waterfall that was really close to the road. The reason we went to Odda was that this is the starting point for going to the Trolltunga. Together with Florine and Thijs we had found a place to stay in a parking lot very close to the center. As soon as we got here we went straight to the info center to get information about walking to the Trolltunga. We wanted to try again to do a multi-day hike. Not necessarily because it is really necessary, there are a lot of people who walk the 24 km long and heavy walk in one day, but because we like to stay up there in our tent. We also hoped to avoid the crowds. We had that already figured out, but what we mainly wanted was some information about the best way to get to the start of the hike. The parking costs were 70 euro+ and 26 euros only for the shuttle that takes you to the start of the walk. This shuttle prevents you from having to walk up/down 3.5 kilometers of hairpin bends on the highway. We are of course Dutch and have a budget as you know so we wanted to see if we couldn’t solve this in another way, for example by taking the bus. But unfortunately this turned out not to be significantly cheaper. Thijs and Florine had offered to drive us, but that wasn’t that much cheaper either because you had to pay 20 euros toll for this road. So long story short, in the end we just drove ourselves. We spent the rest of the afternoon putting the blog online and we had a drink in a nice tent and made use of the WiFi. In the evening we tried to make pasta without eggs which was not really a success, it had become more like a porridge. And as icing on the cake, Florine made chocolate pudding for dessert. We spent the rest of the evening packing our bags and playing fun games with Flo and Thijs as we do every night.

But the next day it was time, we went for a multi-day walk and there were no mosquitoes and the weather was fantastic, all ingredients for a fantastic experience, and it was. We took it easy in the morning and still had to do some shopping for our breakfast and lunch. We didn’t have to start early because we really wanted to see the sunset and we stayed the night at the top. Around 10 o’clock we said goodbye to Florine and Thijs, they did not join us on this adventure and that was the start of our own adventure. The road to the parking lot was a little scary but around 10.30 am we were all ready to go. We put our bags on our backs, and got going. We took the shuttle for the way up, but we probably will walk it down. We had 10 km planned for today and we had all day to get there. The first part was immediately the toughest part, it was a 3.5 km steep climb. So steep that you almost always had to walk on your toes. Slowly we went upstairs with our heavy bags. The weather was fantastic, the sun was shining but it wasn’t too hot because of the cold wind. When we finished the steep part, we thought we deserved a nice cup of tea and lunch, we took the time here to enjoy the view over the mountains and some lakes. You always underestimate how such a large backpack makes hiking extra tough and how the backpack quickly becomes heavy with all your camping gear in it, so it was great to be able to put the backpacks down for a while. After resting we continued. We met a lot of people along the way who were already on the way back, we liked this because for us it meant that there are fewer people at the tongue. Most people all start at 6:00 am as soon as the parking lot opens, hoping to avoid the crowds, but since everyone has this good idea it doesn’t work. We finally arrived at 3:30 pm after taking it really slow and having made many beautiful stops. At that time it was wonderfully quiet.

We enjoyed the walk very much. After the steep climb there were still 3 hills left, so 3 times climbing and descending but less steep and especially less long as the first climb. At one point we could have a really nice view over a glacial lake that had really very clear blue water and the beautiful weather made this extra visible. Overlooking this beautiful lake we went for a second round of tea and rested for a while. The very last part of the hike felt a bit long to us, not so much because we were very tired, but because many oncoming traffic kept saying: ‘You’re almost there, just a few more minutes.’ And of course we wanted to see the tongue, set up our tent and especially take off our bags. Around every bend or at every ridge we thought would this be it? But after 4.30 hours of walking we really came to the Trolltunga. And wow was that impressive. Such a magnificent  view on a rock above a large cliff with a beautiful view of mountains and clear blue water, really cool. First Jap went looking for a nice place for the tent and found a nice spot behind a rock. We quickly set up the tent, luckily we didn’t forget how to and walked back for the first photos. To get to the tongue you had to climb down a staircase in the rock and then you could walk up onto the tongue. It was very wide so when you stood on it, you didn’t really realize how high you were floating above a cliff. And despite the fact that I found it somewhat scary, I walked on it. After this we sat for a long time watching the people who also took a picture, which was really quite a show. Some people lay on their stomach to look over the edge or sat on the edge with their legs dangling over the edge and then Jap and I really couldn’t look at all, that’s how scary we thought it was. After a while we went to make up our beds in the tent and we went to chill inside the tent for a while. The sun had not yet set, so we could relax from the walk. For dinner we had freeze dried pasta arrabiata with us, which was delicious. After we had our dinner, we went back to have another look, around 8 pm. We had some pictures taken again and flew the drone. What a special place this is. For the rest we enjoyed the weird posses people did on the tongue and the sunset in our tent. It is wonderful to be in our old trusty tent again, which has been our home for two months in New Zealand. We pulled our sleeping bags up high against the cold and the wind and fell asleep like a log. Wonderful!

We woke up the next morning in our tent high on the mountain near the Trolltunga. In the course of the night the clouds came rolling in, although tt didn’t really rain it was quite humid. After a (granola bars) breakfast in bed it was time to get ready for the way back, but not before enjoying the view and the Trolltunga one more time. Because of the low hanging clouds it all looked completely different today, which was really icing on the cake for our trip. The fact that the sun shone a little less was a good thing for me because I suffered from burnt shoulders and arms yesterday. The sun is always treacherous in the mountains. The return trip started very well, we both walked with a lot lighter backpacks because of all the water we had used. We were already ‘quickly’ at the last big descent. Today we had to walk 7 km straight down. We had decided not to take the shuttle back, but to actually walk the 3.5 km by road, and that was quite tough. Especially the last part was tough because our legs were already tired from all the kilometers before. We were very happy to be down again, back with Bob. After driving back to Odda and reuniting with VanVerhalen, we played games for the rest of the day, showered in the tourist center and especially rested our legs. Florine made us a delicious curry and it was very nice not to have to cook anymore. And of course, go to bed early at night. We really enjoyed this mini adventure.

The next morning we woke up wonderfully with muscle pain, hahah. After our two-day hike, we felt we deserved a quiet morning. So we did all the necessary bus chores, washing, emptying and replenishing everything and doing groceries. Our gas bottle has also been empty for a few days and we have been looking for gas, but that is going to be difficult here. It looks like we can only arrange this in Bergen. Fortunately, we are still with Florine and Thijs and we can occasionally borrow their gas ?. So we had a quiet morning with our ‘tasks’. But for the afternoon another nice hike was planned, hahah of course! We wanted to walk to the glacier that is nearby. We rode together with VanVerhalen again to share the parking costs. Because here you can hardly park anywhere for free at these kinds touristy places. We started the hike around 2 PM and it was really a nice walk or actually more of a survival course. It was more scrambling than walking, very often we had to pull ourselves up on ropes which was really fun. Once at the top we had a nice view of the glacier and Jap also flew the drone for a while. Then we climbed back down. Our legs held up pretty well even though we were quite tired once we got back to Bob. Because we were out of gas and because we were really looking forward to it, we went for a pizza in the evening. Unfortunately, it was difficult to find an affordable pizza and almost even more difficult to ensure that it was also vegetarian. In the end we succeeded with 1 pizza, despite the fact that we had ordered two of the same pizza’s. They probably couldn’t imagine that two morons wouldn’t want meat, so they had put meat on the other one. In the end we enjoyed both of them by the water and afterwards we crawled into our beds.

Then it was time to leave Odda. We had a really nice time here and it really was the perfect base for all the walks we did. But we were ready for something new. There was one walk nearby that we wanted to do and then we slowly headed towards the city of Bergen. The first hike was to a glacial lake, half an hour from Odda. To get there we had to go through an 11 km long tunnel, well that is really long! It turned out to be very busy in the parking lot of the hike and we started to doubt whether we should go. However, it was only a short walk and on an easy road so off we went. We took it really slow and soon arrived at the beautiful lake. And it was not very busy here. We took some pictures, enjoyed the surroundings and went back like a rocket, because we were hungry. After satisfying this hunger at the camper, we headed for the next stop. A place where you could see 4 waterfalls. It was an hour drive and then we started walking again. It will really becoming a theme, we really don’t have to think about what we are going to do here anymore. The only thing is that we have to think about where we are going to walk. The beginning was lovely on an easy road and soon we were at the first waterfall. A beautiful wide waterfall with a hydroelectric power station next to it. Which is really very common here in Norway. When we wanted to continue to the next waterfalls, we saw that the next part would be very steep. We started to doubt whether we should not just build in a quieter day for ourselves after 3 days of a lot of hiking. In the end we decided to just go back to the car and head for our sleeping place. We thought this was a very brave decision. The drive to the sleeping place was not very smooth and we had to wait a long time for a number of occasions because they had made the road one-way with a traffic light or a traffic controller. And our arrival time also continued to fluctuate for a long time with a 1.30 hour time difference. We couldn’t quite understand why so we stopped at a nice place to re-evaluate our plan and because we were hungry. We still had no gas, so we wanted to get some Thai but unfortunately this one had probably sold so much that it closed earlier. We settled for an ice cream. We looked out over the water for a while and then went back to see if we would continue driving, everything seemed solved now and we drove on to the sleeping place. This turned out to be a really fantastic parking spot with magical views over the mountains, a lake and a glacier. The sunset was also really fantastic and a whole herd of goats came to visit. It couldn’t be better. We also played games with VanVerhalen who joined us again later in the evening.

Today was a quiet day, we mainly drove a bit towards Bergen where we want to arrive tomorrow. The first stop on the way was at a waterfall close to the camper place. It was a nice big waterfall and you could walk from one side of the gorge to the other with a somewhat scary bridge high above the water. It was a beautiful waterfall with a beautiful view into the valley. After enjoying this it was off to the next place, the Thai takeout tent which was closed yesterday. We were all really looking forward to Thai and luckily it was open on time today. We ate a delicious Thai lunch here after which we drove on to the next spot. Our original plan was to drive straight to the next hike, however the weather was beautiful and we came across nice beaches along the way. And when there are plans they change, so we changed our plan and first went to relax on the beach. Here we enjoyed the views and read in our books for a while. Then we drove to the waterfall which would also be our sleeping place. The waterfall was nothing special but it was a nice place to sleep. Here we had a nice meal together with VanVerhalen and played a game.

The next day was all about the city of Bergen and of course filling up our gas bottle! After a lot of research we found a place that could fill our gas bottle. In general it is only possible to exchange your bottles, which they do not do with foreign bottles. But it worked, we can finally cook again. Then we drove to the camper place, a free parking lot, in Bergen. Here we waited for VanVerhalen, after which we explored the city together. Bergen is not very special, it is for a large part an average city, but a few places were very nice. Especially because you could see how old the city was. For the rest we mainly ate tasty things, cinnamon bulle and pizza, and we strolled through the city. By the end of the afternoon we had enough and went back to the campers. Here we mainly focused on the next part of Norway and the route we wanted to take. It also turned out that we will travel together with VanVerhalen for a while longer. We really like it, we have a lot of fun with the four of us!

Much love from us,

Jap and Lon.

Menu of the week

SundayHome made vegan pasta with vegan Alfredo sauce
MondayFreeze-dried pasta arrabiata
TuesdayCurry ramen a la VanVerhalen
ThursdayChili sin carne
FridayCurry a la VanVerhalen

Spendings of the Week

Budget per day €54 and per week €378 and per month €1700

What/WhereCost (€)
Eating out135,28
* In Norway we will use a lot of ferries and therefore included this sections here


Driven kilometers: 480

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