Although Turgon was originally against the departure of the Noldor from Aman, but having started, he was determined to continue, even though he lost his wife Elenwë in the crossing of the icy Helcaraxë. He settled at Vinyamar in Nevrast.
Journeying with his friend Finrod Felagund along Sirion, Ulmo sent both of them a dream to look for a hidden place where they could be safe from the power of Morgoth. Then in the following year Ulmo appeared directly to Turgon and guided him to the vale of Tumladen in the Encircling Mountains, to which Turgon later secretly moved with many of the Noldor, deserting Nevrast, and built Gondolin.
He led a host to the battle called Nirnaeth Arnoediad, and did great deeds before disappearing again into Gondolin.