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But it is far enough away that early explorers had difficulty/difficulties finding it.

What should I choose completing the exam task? Are both plural and singular correct?

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Both are grammatically correct. Both plural and singular can be used.

The better way to say it would be:

But it is far enough away that early explorers had difficulties finding it.

This shows all the explorers faced different difficulties.

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    Although both are grammatical, I would prefer the plural, 'difficulties'. That suggests that different explorers had different difficulties, while the singular, 'difficulty', suggests (I guess less realistically) that all explorers had the same difficulty. – Ross Murray Dec 23 '18 at 12:09

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