Very long and straining was the march up and in the end I did not even get the photo I was longing for. However, the reason for this was clear. The weather! It has stormed and was raining buckets and in addition to that, the fog has made it almost impossible to see more than 50 meters. But of course we did not know that when we were starting our way up. The guard of the 🅿 parking lot – which costs 200 NOK per car – told us that we probably would not see anything above and that the way would be very cumbersome because of the heavy rain.
But what should we do? Our schedule did not allow a change of plan. This meant either to run up today or not at all!
In a short dry moment, we set off and the weather was still very bearable. As we had only briefly researched the exact way, we thought it was a short and easy hike. So we climbed the first hill with the thought that Kjeragbolten was expecting us at the very top. But when we arrived at the top we went downhill again, then through a small valley and again uphill. So it was clear to us that Kjergabolten would be expecting us after the second climb.
But unfortunately we were wrong again. The path went downhill again and again uphill to a high plateau. When we reached this the weather changed fundamentally. Drizzle changed to storm and the clear view became dense fog. When our rain clothing was slowly giving up on the conditions and our shoes were already completely soaked, we pulled over our rain ponchos, which was not that simple while facing that strong storm.
And so we continued fighting our way up to the summit. Not only once we were thinking about giving up.
Through the dense fog, the path markings were becoming less and less visible, and since there were hardly other people, we did get off course more than once.
The last part of the trail ran through a small canyon, where the water was already quite high thanks to the heavy rain. And so we had to jump from stone to stone to keep our feet dry. If I had not known that at the far end of this canyon the famous Kjeragbolten was waiting for us, I wouldn’t have believed it.
It’s just one step away…
When we finally arrived I climbed the narrow path around a big rock to get to our final destination: The Kjeragbolten!
And there I was standing. Just a short hop away. Something I had done hundreds of times. Jumping from one rock to another. Only this time it would be a drop of 1000 meters if I tripped. Additionaly, everything was dripping wet and I was really exhausted. So, a slightly different situation here.
So for several minutes, I stood before this rock… one meter away … bouncing from one leg to the other, ready to jump. Or nor. For a moment I thought I could just crawl over. But at some point I realized I won’t have the courage to do it. So, relieved, but frustrated, I left.
…but I don’t dare to jump
So we started our way down – without a photo.. The descent was not really easier than the way up. because the weather did not get any better. Furthermore, there are many iron chains, on which you have to abseil on the very steep and slippery passages, which a very demanding.
However, as we had left the plateau behind us, the weather improved significantly, and we were able to walk the last part of the hike in almost dry conditions.
Being back in the car we immediately turned on the seat heater and changed our clothes.
And we made a mental note: You should’t risk your life just for a photo. And don’t climb a unknown mountain when the rain is blowing in your face.