I just got back from a two week long trip to Norway and I got to see some really amazing sights! One of them was Pulpit Rock. This is doable at the end of April without a guide (at least this year, 2022), there was snow about 1/3 of the hike (the last stretch) but we didn’t need crampons, just good hiking boots. It’s good to check ahead at the visitor center to see if you’ll need to rent crampons if you’re going this early in the season.
We had a lot of issues figuring out how to get there, and even after purchasing our bus tickets, ran into some issues. I wanted to make a post on how I got there, and my experience on the hike, especially for those of you who might use the same bus service. Hopefully it can save you the headache it caused me!
I booked my bus ticket through Pulpit Rock Tours. I chose the Klubbgata pick up point and would like to explicitly mention that it picks you up across the street and slightly up the block. The bus has their purple Pulpit Rock Tours logo on it in the front window, it’s not a regular city bus. Knowing to look for that would have been incredibly helpful! So I hope it helps you, too.
I selected a roundtrip option and the good thing about the ride back is you don’t need to set a specific time. Just know the time tables for returning (listed on website) and you can use any of them to return to your pick up point. Later in the season, you can take the Tau ferry to the Jorepland Pier, and take a city bus the rest of the way. But since we weren’t in high season, this wasn’t an option for me (at least that we could figure out with the limited information available). You can still book through Pulpit Rock Tours even in high season, but it will probably be a bit more expensive than the ferry/city bus combo.
This hike is listed as Moderate, for Norwegians. I’ll tell you what, Norwegians are great hikers because it was not moderate for me 🤣 But I also have asthma, so that presents challenges. I think I should’ve puffed my inhaler a bit earlier, since it seemed like it didn’t kick in until about halfway up the mountain!
There are some steep portions with rocky stairs, and my lungs hate stairs, so just know that there are a lot of stairs for the elevation climb. As long as you’re good with that, I think that’s the hardest part of the hike for me. There are some rocky pathways, but nothing too extreme. There were a lot of kids on this hike, even with the snow for the last third of it, and they all seemed to do alright. There are plenty of places to step off and rest along the way, if you need to. I had to do this several times going up, but it was a pretty quick trip back down.
It’s a very beautiful hike with a lot of pretty scenery along the way.
You’ll see waterfalls off in the distance, beautiful trees, beautiful cliffs, just… beautiful. All around.
Fortunately for me, April is not high season, so I got to experience Pulpit Rock without a huge crowd. People were being quite generous, taking turns to step out to the ledge to get their shot, then switching places with the next person. It was really nice!
I’m not the most talented photographer, but I got one of my favorite shots ever here, of my friend and travel partner.
She got a really cool one of me, too.
Take in those beautiful views and have yourself a well earned rest at the top. Some people were eating little picnics, too. Wish I would’ve thought to do this and pack a lunch ahead of time!
Be careful on the way back down because it’s quite steep and lots of bumpy terrain to potentially lose your footing. Overall, we did this hike up and back in about 4 hours time. Some people can do it quicker, others might need to allow for more time. I would take an earlier trip up, in case it takes you a while, don’t want to be stuck hiking back down in the dark or without a ride if you’re relying on a bus.
This was such an epic hike with epic views, I understand why it’s so popular. If you’re in Stavanger for a few days and able to hike (with the weather on your side), I wouldn’t miss this one! I know it can get crowded, but the breathtaking views really are magical.