Four people, one guitar, four days to hitchhike (and return) several hundred miles in search of Trolltunga (troll’s tongue), seemingly the edge of the world. Would it be possible? Of course it would. Anything is possible.
We started our journey from a small farm north of Oslo where we had been building a sailing boat. It’s pretty rural and we had to hike out of the forest under the scorching Norwegian sun. Rarely has Norway seen such high temperatures, but supposedly this was one of the hottest summers for many years.
Between the four of us, we had four bags, some water, some homebrew, three sleeping bags, a single guitar – which only one of us could play – and a no tent.
We were not particularly well prepared.
Within minutes of reaching the main road – after an hour of walking – the four of us were picked up by a pretty, young Norwegian girl who turned out to be a European paintball champion as part of the Norwegian national team. We had worried about hitchhiking as a four before we started, but this showed us that it was very possible and we were elated.
Sadly, our joy was short lived. For six hours we waited for our second ride, getting tired, getting irritated, our group nearly splitting. Soon darkness fell.
Under dark, we got our second ride. Then a third. Soon we were in a lake, bouncing on a water trampoline, and being invited to the home of two friendly Norwegians. We were back on track, but had travelled less than a hundred kilometres in a whole day of hitchhiking. Having a warm place to stay for the night was rather lovely, especially considering that we had only two sleeping bags between the three of us and although the day was warm, the night was not.
We begun the next day with river swims, eager to get going, to reach our goal.
Little by little, tunnel by tunnel, we edged our way through beautiful Norwegian scenery, swimming in cool rivers every time we were dropped off. What I learnt during this day, was that Norway is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. Truly.
As darkness fell, we were still on the side of the road, just 30km from our target. This time, there was no salvation and we slept outside through the cold night.
On the third day, we were desperate to reach our destination and being so close to our target, we decided to split up on a snap decision and hitch in pairs. As we had no phones, confusion ensued and we weren’t able to meet up as we intended. But we had made it to the trail that goes to Trolltunga. From here, we were informed that it was a mere 10 hour hike up to the top and back down again – something we had not anticipated. [If you want to visit Trolltunga, this is the closest you can get in a car, so you have to hike to get to it – think of it as a reward for your hard work]
Norway is beautiful. I love it. I had no idea how much more beautiful it was about to come. It wasn’t until I actually saw Trolltunga that I felt I was hitchhiking to the edge of the world.
Click here to read part 2, hiking to the edge of the world, concerning hiking (for six hours) in jeans, food poisoning from old bananas, swimming in mountain lakes, and getting to the top of a mountain with nothing but an iPad. You can also read part three, sleeping at the edge of the world. A cold, cold night and a moral dilemma or take a look at my Trolltunga image gallery. Eye candy!