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Welcome to Preikestolen Basecamp!

Preikestolen is known as the most iconic natural landmark in Norway. From atop the 604-meter-high cliff, the panoramic views of the Lysefjord are some of the most dramatic scenery Fjord-Norway has to offer. In 2020, approximately 300,000 visitors will hike to the imposing cliffside.

Read More About Preikestolen’s History

At Preikestolen Basecamp, Outdoorlife Norway offers water activities, team-building adventures, and guided day-hikes to the iconic Pulpit Rock. Overnight visitors can also choose between staying in a modern mountain lodge, a dormitory-style hostel, or a historic farmhouse.

Year-Round Guided Hiking Adventures to Preikestolen

As the leading provider of ‘off the beaten track’ outdoor experiences around the Lysefjord, Outdoorlife Norway organizes hundreds of guided tours to Preikestolen (Pulpit Rock) every year. We’ve designed unique, innovative, and premium tours that offer guests authentic wilderness experiences, while avoiding the crowds. Our team of professional, dedicated nature guides has the experience and know-how to ensure you a safe and memorable outdoor adventure. 

PREIKESTOLEN
WINTER-SPRING HIKE

PRICE
| 1,290 NOK

Hike in near-solitude while encountering breathtaking views of Preikestolen and the Lysefjord, which are often blanketed in snow this time of year.

2020 SEASON | Jan. – April
DIFFICULTY | Moderate

Pick-up/Drop-off in Stavanger
Includes Post-Hike Hot Soup!

PREIKESTOLEN WINTER
– SPRING CRUISE & HIKE

PRICE | 1,790 NOK

Enjoy the Lysefjord during the serenity of Norway’s winter/springtime while experiencing Preikestolen from two unique perspectives – from the water & on-foot!

2020 SEASON | Jan. – April
DIFFICULTY | Moderate

Starts at Stavanger’s Harbor
Exclusive viewpoints!

PREIKESTOLEN CLASSIC
SUMMER HIKE

PRICE
| 1,290 NOK

Explore one of the world’s most iconic landmarks on our classic guided summer hike to Pulpit Rock. Get access to hidden views and the best photo opportunities.

2020 SEASON | May – Sept.
DIFFICULTY | Moderate

Pick-up/Drop-off in Stavanger
Includes Post-Hike Hot Soup!

PREIKESTOLEN
SUNRISE HIKE

PRICE
| 1,390 NOK

Experience a unique Preikestolen adventure, guaranteed to be crowd-free! Join us on a twilight hike to Pulpit Rock and catch the sun rising over the Lysefjord.

2020 SEASON | April – Oct.
DIFFICULTY | Moderate

Pick-up/Drop-off in Stavanger
Includes Post-Hike Breakfast
!

PREIKESTOLEN HIKE
“OFF THE BEATEN TRACK”

PRICE
| 1,590 NOK

For the adventurous! Avoid the crowds, paddle in a canoe, and encounter unique views of Preikestolen and the Lysefjord. Includes off-trail hiking and scrambling.

2020 SEASON | May – Sept.
DIFFICULTY | More Difficult

Pick-up/Drop-off in Stavanger
Includes Lake Canoeing!

PREIKESTOLEN
AUTUMN HIKE

PRICE
| 1,290 NOK

Hike with a guide during the stillness of the off-season and experience exclusive viewpoints, stunning light conditions, and autumnal foliage – without the crowds!

2020 SEASON | Oct. – Dec.
DIFFICULTY | Moderate

Pick-up/Drop-off in Stavanger
Includes Post-Hike Hot Soup!

PREIKESTOLEN AUTUMN
CRUISE &
HIKE

PRICE | 1,790 NOK

Enjoy the Lysefjord’s magical, autumnal colors and post-equinox daylight while experiencing Pulpit Rock from two unique perspectives – without the crowds!

2020 SEASON | Oct. – Dec.
DIFFICULTY | Moderate

Starts at Stavanger’s Harbor
Exclusive viewpoints!

PREIKESTOLEN CLASSIC
PRIVATE HIKE

PER GROUP
| 8,990 NOK

Explore one of the world’s most iconic landmarks on our privately-guided classic hike to Pulpit Rock. Get privacy, personal service, and access to exclusive viewpoints.

2020 SEASON | May – Sept.
DIFFICULTY | Moderate

Customized Pick-up/Drop-off
Includes Post-Hike Hot Soup!

 

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These symbols indicate the tours’ levels of hiking difficulty.

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Preikestolen Basecamp Equipment Rentals 

EQUIPMENT RENTALS & EXTRAS FOR
GUIDED HIKING TOURS

PRICES FROM | 50 NOK

Ensure a safe and comfortable guided hike without packing extra equipment. We offer rental of high-quality hiking boots, outerwear, and other equipment for use during Outdoorlife Norway’s guided hikes – all at a fair price. Photography packages also available!

RENTAL DURATION | tour’s duration
SEASON
| year-round

EQUIPMENT RENTALS FOR SELF-GUIDED
DAY-HIKING

PRICES FROM | 50 NOK

Do you want to spend a day in the mountains, but lack the essentials?  We offer rental of high-quality tour gear, including hiking boots, outerwear, walking sticks, and other equipment for use during your adventure. 

RENTAL DURATION | 8 hours
SEASON
| year-round

Rental items for self-guided guests are available on a first come, first served basis at our Activity Center, which is located at the trailhead. 

EQUIPMENT RENTALS FOR SELF-GUIDED
WATER ACTIVITIES
PRICES FROM
| 300 NOK per boat/board

Rent the equipment necessary for canoeing, kayaking, pedal-boating (pedalo), or standup-paddle boarding (SUP) and enjoy a self-guided tour across the tranquil Revsvatnet lake. Our boats and paddle-boards are of the most stable sort, making them well-suited for beginners and experienced paddlers alike. 

RENTAL DURATION | 3 hours or more
SEASON
| May – October

Group & Team Activities at Preikestolen Basecamp 

Preikestolen Basecamp is situated in the heart of Fjord Norway’s spectacular wilderness, making it the perfect location to come together and enjoy some quality time outside. We’ve designed unique, fun, and exciting outdoor activities, which can be tailored for families, team-building, and groups of school children – among others!  Our group/team activities can accommodate between four and fifty participants, and include relationship-building activities, puzzle-solving, competitions, and/or strenuous physical challenges. All group activities take place outdoors, in the area around Preikestolen Basecamp, where participants will have the added enjoyment of fresh mountain air and beautiful natural scenery. 

PROBLEM-SOLVE TOGETHER
For private / group bookings
PRICE | 3,900 NOK for up to 10 people
(+390 NOK per additional participant)

Problem-Solve Together is a tailored group activity that offers a fun and mentally-challenging way to encourage interpersonal cooperation. It’s suited to most types and sizes of groups, including families and school groups, and is the perfect activity to help increase team spirit by helping people become better acquainted. Following the directions of an experienced activity leader, participants use communication and collaboration to solve a series of mental and/or physical challenges. If desired, Problem-Solve Together can be tailored as a competition. On warmer days from May through October, activities involving water can be included.

GROUP SIZE | 4 – 50 participants
DURATION | 1 – 3 hours
SEASON | January – December

MENTAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
PHYSICAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | customizable 

COMPETE TOGETHER
For private / group bookings
PRICE | 4,900 NOK for up to 10 people
(+490 NOK per additional participant)

Compete Together is designed to be a high-paced, competitive activity that’s both mentally and physically challenging.  Following the directions of an activity leader, teams ‘race’ through a series of tasks, which require cooperation, mental concentration, and a bit of strength and physical endurance. Compete Together takes place on the scenic grounds of Preikestolen Basecamp, and can be executed year-round, including during the darkest of months. It’s an ideal team-building activity, but is suited to most types of groups, including families and school children.

 

 

GROUP SIZE | 4 – 50 participants
DURATION | 2 – 4 hours
SEASON | January – December

MENTAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
PHYSICAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

EXPLORE TOGETHER
For private / group bookings
PRICE | 8,900 NOK for up to 10 people
(+890 NOK per additional participant)

Explore Together is a tailored group/team activity that is both fun and challenging. Following the directions of an experienced activity leader, participants are challenged to various team-building tasks while exploring the environment and terrain and around the lodge. With the use of GPS and other tools, Explore Together leads teams through a series of different challenges and/or tasks, each of which helps the participants advance to the next step of the activity. If desired, Explore Together can be tailored as a competition. From May through October, water activities such as canoeing can be included.

 


GROUP SIZE
| 4 – 50 participants
DURATION | 3 – 5 hours
SEASON
| January – December

MENTAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦
PHYSICAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | customizable

MENTAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
PHYSICAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | customizable 

MENTAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
PHYSICAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

MENTAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦
PHYSICAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | customizable

SWEAT TOGETHER
For private / group bookings
PRICE | 5,900 NOK for up to 10 people
(+590 NOK per additional participant)

Sweat Together is a group/team activity that’s designed as a ‘no pain, no gain’ physical challenge. It’s perfect for groups who enjoy strenuous outdoor activities. Following the directions of an experienced activity leader, Sweat Together steers participants through a series of obstacles that include using tools such as ropes and tires. From May through October, weather permitting, water activities can also be included. Sweat Together can be structured as a challenge for either teams or individuals, and can be tailored as a competition, if desired.

 

GROUP SIZE | 4 – 50 participants
DURATION | 2 – 5 hours
SEASON
| January – December

MENTAL DEMAND |
PHYSICAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | customizable

GET COOKING TOGETHER
For private / group bookings
PRICE | 6,500 NOK for up to 10 people
(+650 NOK per additional participant)

Get Cooking Together is a group activity that promotes relationship-building in a fun and delicious way. With the assistance of an experienced activity leader, participants prepare a traditional 3-course meal over an open fire. Get Cooking Together is perfect for groups that are looking for an easy-going, low-intensity activity, but it’s also a great compliment to Preikestolen Basecamp’s other group and team challenges. This activity is suited to all types of groups, including families and school groups, and can be combined with accommodation at our lakeside water camp.


GROUP SIZE
| 4 – 20 participants
DURATION | 3 – 4 hours
SEASON
| May – October

MENTAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦
PHYSICAL DEMAND |
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | not applicable

ON THE WATER TOGETHER
For private / group bookings
PRICE | 3,500 NOK for up to 10 people
(+350 NOK per additional participant)

Our On the Water Together activity, which is designed to encourage team/relationship-building, can be tailored to include activities in the form of treasure hunts, competitions, and/or strenuous physical challenges. Following the directions of an experienced activity leader, participants will utilize kayaks, canoes, and/or standup paddle-boards to work through a series of tasks. On the Water Together is an ideal team-building activity, but is suited to all types of groups, including families and school children. It a great day-trip activity, but can also be combined with accommodation at our lakeside water camp.

GROUP SIZE | 4 – 30 participants
DURATION | 2 – 3 hours
SEASON | May – October

MENTAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦
PHYSICAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ 
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | customizable

MENTAL DEMAND |
PHYSICAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | customizable

MENTAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦
PHYSICAL DEMAND |
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | not applicable

MENTAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦
PHYSICAL DEMAND | ♦ ♦ 
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING | ♦ ♦ ♦
COMPETITIVENESS | customizable

Water Activities & Camping Near Preikestolen

At Preikestolen Basecamp, we offer a variety of water-based activities that are both fun and safe. Rent vessels and equipment for self-guided lake tours, book one of our guided water activities, or rent our unique lakeside Water Camp. Our lake activities allow guests to enjoy spending time on the lake without the risks and distraction of sharing the water with larger/motorized boats. They are ideal for day-trips into the mountains but also perfect compliments to hiking and/or team-building adventures at the lodge. All activities are well suited to any type of group, including families, school children, bachelor parties, and work-related outings. 

RENTALS | WATER ACTIVITIES
PRICE
| from 300 NOK per boat/board


Explore one of our region’s pristine aquatic environments on your own terms! Rent vessels and equipment for canoeing, kayaking, paddle-boating (pedalo), or standup-paddle boarding (SUP) and enjoy a self-guided tour across the tranquil Revsvatnet lake, without the distractions and obstacles created by larger boat traffic. 

Our boats and paddle-boards are of the more stable variety, making them well-suited for beginners and experienced paddlers alike. Please note minimum age requirements.

All boat and SUP board rentals include life vests. 

RENTAL DURATION | 3 hours or more
SEASON
| May – October

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak)

PRIVATE LAKESIDE CAMPING | SELF-SERVICE
PRICE | 3,000 NOK per night (up to 5 guests)
PRICE
| 5,000 NOK per night (up to 10 guests)

Rent our private lakeside Water Camp and sleep under the stars in hammocks hung from the covered-dock. While you’re there, take a dip in Revsvatnet lake’s pristine waters, fish for freshwater trout, and enjoy paddling across the lake. Cook your own food over an open fire, or upgrade your stay and enjoy meals in the comfort of Preikestolen Mountain Lodge’s cozy restaurant. Rental includes hammocks, wood/charcoal, breakfast kits, and the use of up to 5 water vessels (kayak, canoe, rowboat, and/or standup paddle-boards). Accommodation at the Water Camp may be combined with our other outdoor activities.

SEASON | May – October
GROUP SIZE 
| 1 – 10 guests

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak) 

PRIVATE LAKESIDE CAMPING | STAFFED
PRICE
| Please send inquiry via button


Book a private, staffed overnight stay at our lakeside Water Camp and enjoy a touch of luxury while sleeping under the stars. Rent our lakeside
Water Camp and sleep under the stars in hammocks hung from the covered-dock. Bring your own food and cook over an open fire, or upgrade your rental and enjoy meals in the comfort of Preikestolen Mountain Lodge’s cozy restaurant. Rental includes the use of up to 5 water vessels (kayak, canoe, rowboat, and/or standup paddle-boards) and may be combined with other outdoor activities.

SEASON | May – October
GROUP SIZE 
| 1 – 10 guests

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak) 

RENTAL DURATION | 3 hours or more
SEASON
| May – October

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak)

SEASON | May – October
GROUP SIZE 
| 1 – 10 guests

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak) 

SEASON | May – October
GROUP SIZE 
| 1 – 10 guests

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak) 

PADDLING LESSONS – 101
PRICE | 2,400 NOK for up to 4 people
(+600 NOK per additional participant)

Join an experienced instructor on Refsvatnet lake for a 2-3 hour beginners’ course in lake paddling, and learn how to safely maneuver a canoe, kayak, or standup paddle-board (SUP) without the distractions and obstacles created by larger boat traffic. Includes an instructor with lifeguard certification, paddling equipment, and life vests. Rental wet suits available at an additional charge.

DURATION | 2 – 3 hours
SEASON
| May – October

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak) 

PADDLING WITH A GUIDE
PRICE
| 2,400 NOK for up to 4 people
(+600 NOK per additional participant)

Choose between paddling in a canoe, kayak, or on a standup paddle-board (SUP). Join a guide on Refsvatnet lake and enjoy the peace and tranquility of Norway’s beautiful mountain scenery. Learn about the area’s flora, fauna, and cultural history. Includes an experienced guide, paddling equipment, and life vests. Rental wet suits available at an additional charge.

DURATION | 2 – 3 hours
SEASON
| May – October

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak) 

PADDLING + LAKESIDE COOKING
PRICE | 5,700 NOK for up to 6 people
(+950 NOK per additional participant)

Combine a paddling tour or lesson with a lakeside cooking experience. First, paddle across Refsvatnet lake and enjoy the peace and tranquility of Norway’s beautiful mountain scenery. Once ashore at our lakeside camp, help prepare traditional 3-course meal over a campfire. Includes an experienced activity leader, 3-course lunch/dinner, paddling equipment, and life vests. Rental wet suits available at an additional charge.

DURATION | 3 – 5 hours
SEASON
| May – October

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak) 

DURATION | 2 – 3 hours
SEASON
| May – October

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak) 

DURATION | 2 – 3 hours
SEASON
| May – October

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak) 

DURATION | 3 – 5 hours
SEASON
| May – October

MINIMUM AGE FOR USE OF VESSELS
4 yrs. (canoe) | 8 yrs. (SUP) | 10 yrs. (kayak) 

Outdoor & Wilderness Courses at Preikestolen Basecamp

Preikestolen Basecamp offers a variety of unique wilderness courses, which help guests sharpen their skills and feel more confident spending time in the great outdoors. Learn to cook over an open fire, how and what to pack for day-hikes, how to read maps and compasses, or about the different types of overnight wilderness shelters. All courses are customizable and can also be combined into a full-day or 2-day course. Send us an enquiry!

BASIC WILDERNESS COURSE
For Private / Group Bookings
PRICES FROM
300 NOK
Per Person / Min. 4 People

Join an instructor for a basic course in outdoor life. Learn about safety, backpack essentials, Norway’s land-use laws and trail etiquette, and get recommendations for outdoor clothing/gear. Choose between our standard course our let us tailor a course to your personal needs.

DURATION | 3 hrs (customizable)
2020 SEASON | May – Oct.
DIFFICULTY | Easy

COMPASS & MAP APTITUDE
For Private / Group Bookings
PRICES FROM 
300 NOK
Per Person / Min. 4 People

Book this course and let our instructor teach you how to properly use and read maps and compasses. Learn how to safely and confidently navigate the wilderness when hiking off-trail, and never get lost again  =)

DURATION | 3 hrs (customizable)
2020 SEASON | May – Oct.

DIFFICULTY | Easy

SLEEPING UNDER THE STARS
For Private / Group Bookings
PRICES FROM 
300 NOK
Per Person / Min. 4 People

During this course, our instructor will teach you about the different types of accommodation used in the Norwegian wilderness. You’ll learn how to choose the best accommodation for specific landscapes, how to build small shelters, and the basics of planning an overnight trip.

DURATION | 3 hrs (customizable)
2020 SEASON | May – Oct.

DIFFICULTY | Easy

WILDERNESS COOKING
For Private / Group Bookings
PRICES FROM 
| 450 NOK
Per Person / Min. 4 People

Learn how to prepare food over an open fire. Complement other basecamp activities or combine with overnight accommodation at our lakeside water camp. A low intensity activity that’s well suited for team building, school/class tours, and families.

DURATION | 4 hrs (customizable)
2020 SEASON | May – Oct.

DIFFICULTY | Easy

DURATION | 3 hrs +/-
DIFFICULTY | Easy
SEASON
| May – Oct.

DURATION | 3 hrs +/-
DIFFICULTY | Easy
SEASON
| May – Oct.

DURATION | 3 hrs +/-
DIFFICULTY | Easy
SEASON
| May – Oct.

DURATION | 4 hrs +/-
DIFFICULTY | Easy
SEASON
| May – Oct.

The History of Norway’s Most Sought-after Natural Icon

Preikestolen (Pulpit Rock), which is located just 1.5-hours outside of Stavanger, is a 25×25-meter (82×82-feet) granite monolith that protrudes 604 meters (1,982 feet) above the majestic Lysefjord. From atop its surface, visitors enjoy panoramic views of some of the most dramatic landscapes in all of Fjord Norway. It’s for these reasons that the location has become the most iconic natural landmark in Norway. Annually, approximately 300,000 visitors, hailing from all corners of the world, hike the 4-kilometer-long trail up to Preikestolen. In recent years, it has also garnered the attention of international media. In 2017, Preikestolen topped CNN’s list of the most “awe-inspiring natural wonders for your bucket list”.

How was Preikestolen Formed?

According to geologists, Preikestolen was most likely formed around 10,000 years ago, during the last Ice Age. As the glaciers melted away, and the Lysefjord was formed, the now-famous cliffside was exposed.

Before the start of the Ice Ages, the area around the Lysefjord was a shallow mountain valley that had been created as rivers and creeks eroded the landscape. Through the many Ice Ages, which spanned a period of 1-2 million years, moving glaciers carved into the landscape, reforming it along the way. Toward the end of the last Ice Age (10,000 years ago), as the glaciers retreated, debris was pushed downward and outward along the valley while the sea-level simultaneously began to rise. Over time, the debris accumulated into massive piles and walls, known as moraines. The seawater eventually broke over/through the valley’s end moraine, causing it to flood, at which point the fjord was formed. Though the floor of the Lysefjord is 457 meters (1,500 feet) below sea-level at its deepest point, the end moraine at the mouth of the fjord resulted in a depth of just 13 meters (43 feet).

Without the glaciers, which had served as a stabilizing force, the Lysefjord’s surrounding mountains became unstable. Successive cold winters caused frost damage to the granite bedrock, which eventually cracked. Once loose, whole sections of the mountainsides broke away, causing vast quantities of rock to tumble into the fjord below. The Preikestolen cliffside was formed when three massive cracks gave way, leaving it in its current form.

The Discovery of Preikestolen

According to historians, the first known person to visit Preikestolen was Thomas Peter Randulff, a bank manager from Stavanger. One day, as he cruised through the Lysefjord as a passenger aboard the steam boat Oscar II., Randulff noticed a striking rock formation that was jutting out from the granite cliffside high above the fjord’s northern shore. The captain of the vessel, who was familiar with the rock formation, explained that, because the locals thought it resembled the blade of a wood planer, it was known as Hyvlatånnå, or the planning tooth. Randulff, already an active member of the Norwegian Hiking Association, was very curious to see what it was like to stand atop Hyvlatånnå. Soon after he first set his eyes on it, Randdulff decided he wanted to try to become the first person to hike to the location.

In 1896, there were no roads in the area around Preikestolen, so Randdulff and his travel companion, Ole Hausken, started their hike at sea-level, on the shores of the Lysefjord. After hiking some time, the pair encountered Vatne Farm, which was located at what is now the modern-day trailhead. Neither the widow, who managed the farm, nor her children had ever heard of the rock formation known as Hyvlatånnå. Her two sons however, Elling and Guttom, were eager to help the gentlemen find it. Because he had a lot of knowledge of the area, they also enlisted their neighbour, Fredrik Bratteli, to join the expedition.

Tourist Traffic to Preikestolen

Once word got out about Hyvlatånnå, people from all over the region wanted to experience standing atop the massive plateau. The first tourists who visited what is now Preikestolen did so in the early 1900s. At the time, prior to roads being built to the area, it was not easily accessible, and therefore a long and difficult hike for those who wanted to visit. In the early 1920s, a marked trail to Preikestolen was established and two farms (Vatne and Torsnes) began offering overnight accommodation to visitors. Around that time, there were about 100 guests annually between the two farms. It wasn’t until 1961, four decades later, that a road was finally constructed between Jørpeland and Vatne farm. This development made it possible for people to visit Preikestolen in just one day, and the number of tourists to Preikestolen steadily increased with each passing year. By the 1990s, there were 50,000 visitors annually.

In 2004, the numbers had jumped to 75,000. After 2010, there has been an exponential increase in media attention, digital word-of-mouth, and visitors sharing their experiences on social media. This has resulted in Preikestolen becoming a year-round tourist attraction as well as the most visited natural attraction in Norway. In 2019, more than 300,000 people are expected to make their way to the iconic landmark. Preikestolen has not only become the number one hiking destination in Norway – it truly is an international icon, attracting visitors from all over the world. Preikestolen is frequently the subject of countless PR and media activities. Most recently, it was the filming site for the final action scenes in Mission: Impossible – Fallout (MI6).

What Does Preikestolen Mean?

The Norwegian name Preikestolen consists of two words: Preike and stolen. Preike means ‘to preach’, and stolen means ‘the chair’. Literally translated, Preikestolen means ‘the preacher’s chair’. The most common English name for Preikestolen, Pulpit Rock, stems from the Latin work pulpitim, which means platform. In English, a slightly altered version of the word, pulpit, is used to describe a raised church platform from which preacher’s preach.

Preikestolen (Pulpit Rock) got its current name based on its appearance, when viewed from sea-level. The cliffside, which seems to hang high above the fjord, resembles the shape and height of a church’s pulpit.

When Will Preikestolen Fall Down?

While visiting Preikestolen, most people notice the wide, long crack that crosses the plateau’s surface. Some may wonder if the crack means that Preikestolen is unstable and worry that it may detach from the mountainside and fall into the fjord below. Since the 1990s, Geologists have taken regular measurements of the crack to check for signs that the mountain is shifting. Preikestolen consists of two very solid rock types, granite and gneiss, and measurements of the crack have shown that it doesn’t traverse deep into the plateau. In addition, the crack has not increased in width. A recent report titled ‘Stability Analysis of Preikestolen’ by Katrine Mo (2018, The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU)), concluded that, for the foreseeable future, Preikestolen is not going to fall down. We can therefore assure visitors that it’s safe to walk atop Preikestolen – bearing in mind that everybody should take safety precautions when approaching the edge of the plateau.

That being said – nothing lasts forever. In the distant future, mighty Preikestolen will eventually surrender to erosion and the forces of gravity. Legend says that Preikestolen will fall into the sea on the day that seven brothers marry seven sisters, just as the wedding party rows through the fjord on their way to church.

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