The Preikestolen plateau near Stavanger attracts thousands of visitors every year for the amazing views and dramatic nature, but to get to the top takes some serious effort. Here is the definitive checklist for your trip, so you can pack like a local.
Once you have packed your backpack and set out on the four-to-five hour return hike, prepare to be wow-ed at the top of the plateau. 600 metres below the sharp-edged rock formation, the deep Lysefjord stretches as far as the eye can see.
You rely on your feet to take you through forest, rocky terrain, and safely past the narrow passage to the plateau, so take good care of them on the way. The best option is hiking boots that support your ankle, especially if you are not an experienced hiker, although some choose regular hiking shoes or trainers. Make sure your shoes have a good grip, as the rocks can be slippery if it has been raining.
This one goes without saying. From the climb through the forest, the birds you may spot along the way, to the rock formation itself, you will have some incredible pictures and videos from this trip.
Food and water
While there are no places to buy food on the hike, there are plenty of spots to rest and enjoy your packed lunch with a great view. One tip is to bring a bag for your trash, so you can easily take it all back with you and recycle at the hostel. Norwegians have a tradition of bringing the delicious chocolate bar Kvikklunsj to hiking and skiing trips, it can be found in any supermarket and comes in four perfect-to-share pieces.
Layers, layers, layers
Norwegians have a saying: “Bad weather does not exist, only bad clothing”. The weather can change very rapidly, and temperatures and wind conditions vary a lot from the hiking base to the top, so always check the weather forecast and listen to the advice of the locals. While you will get warm when hiking, an extra sweater or jacket means you can spend your well-earned break at the top without getting cold. If you are hiking outside of the summer months, it is extra important to bring rain- and windproof outerwear, a hat and gloves.
This one is for after the hike 🙂 Near HI Preikestolen Hostel there is a beautiful lake where you can cool down and relax, go fishing, rent a stand-up-paddleboard, rowing boat, kayak or canoe.
photo top: Paul Edmundson / fjordnorway.com