One of the most spectacular scenic cliffs in Norway, Trolltunga is situated about 1,100 meters above sea level, overhanging some 700 meters above lake Ringedalsvatnet. However, the magnificent views are preceded by a long and hard hike of 20-odd kilometers with a 900-meter ascent, taking some 10-12 hours. The hike is available from mid-June to mid-September, depending on the snow conditions. There is no mobile phone coverage along the route, which does not allow tourists to post selfies immediately after the ascent and, more importantly, complicates salvage operations.
"So far, it has been a great challenge to deal with the tourist inflow, both in terms of hikers' safety and the preservation of the landscape, advisor Rolf Bøen at Odda municipality, told NRK, citing tourists' poor preparation and noncompliance.
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In 2015, an Australian hiker lost her balance and fell from a rock on her way back from the top. Thomas Ruud, the owner of Trolltunga Adventures, commented that an accident was waiting to happen.
The public's access to the Norwegian nature is ensured by the freedom to roam, which is also known as "every man's right."
"Without it, mountain life in Norway would have been completely different. But when it gets to places like Trolltunga, it is not an open mountain area anymore, but something resembling a large amusement park," Bjørn Arild Fjeldsbø of Red Cross Norway told NRK, calling for some kind of regulations.
Local politician Terje Kollbotn suggested charging all tourists an entrance fee, which with 100,000 visitors will provide the local budget with an extra 50 million NOK ($8mln) for equipping the vicinity with all necessary amenities such as a base camp with 100 beds, Norwegian newspaper Bergens Tidende reported.
So far, the municipality has provided secured trails and built an emergency shelter in case of abrupt weather changes.