Lysefjord, nearly 2,000 feet below, carved its way through the granite landscape; its smooth waters looked as if they’d been cast in obsidian. The vista was simply jaw-dropping, and hours could be spent absorbing its many nuances. I shared the granite plateau, called Preikestolen or “the Pulpit Rock,” with my shipmates and just half a dozen other hikers who had also made the early morning hike. There were no guardrails, no warning signs, no restrooms or water fountains — it was unadulterated beauty. In fact, although visited by thousands every year, there was nothing to indicate that anyone had ever stood here before. The closer I stood, kneeled and then crawled up to the sheer drop-off, attempting to gain the ideal vantage point for photos, the better it felt. It was spiritual.