Iceland Map
Site Index
Contact
Random
Our Travel Books
Advertising / Press

The Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur

Add to Flipboard Magazine.

Not far from the Viti Crater on the northeastern side of Mývatn, we encountered the lavafield of Leirhnjúkur, which is part of the Krafla volcanic region. Nearly thirty years after the last eruptions, the ground here is still smoking and hot to the touch.

Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur

There’s a five-kilometer path leading through Leirhnjúkur, which took us a couple hours to complete. It should have been faster, but we were slowed significantly by both the snow and the scenery. Many of the trail markers were completely buried and, for safety’s sake, we took our time. With hot pools, steam vents, craggy lava rocks and sections of super-heated dirt pockmarking the ground, Leirhnjúkur is not the kind of place you’d want to accidentally veer off the path.

The lavafield provided a study in contrasts. It was bizarre to be standing ankle-deep in snow, while touching a scorched-black patch of earth that was still painfully hot. The latest volcanic activity here occurred between 1975 and 1984, a period during which there were nine eruptions. These “Krafla Fires” gained fame across the world for their curtains of lava.

Another amazing sight in a region simply full of them, Leirhnjúkur was the most exciting hike we did while at Mývatn.

Location on our Iceland Map

Book Your Mývatn Cabin Here

Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Lavafield of Leirhnjúkur
Vacation Rentals Iceland

<!– div.centerimg { margin-top:10px; } –>

, , , , , , ,
October 24, 2013 at 6:10 pm Comment (1)

Fimmvörðuháls – Fimmvörðuskáli to Þórsmörk

Add to Flipboard Magazine.

The first half of our 25-kilometer hike from Skógar to Þórsmörk had been dominated by waterfalls, barren mountain vistas, and an unending uphill climb. But after passing between the two glaciers of Eyjafjallajökull and Mýrdalsjökull, our path would start its descent, and the clouds which had been plaguing us all day would clear up, revealing the valley of Þórsmörk below us: one of the most stunning landscapes we’ve ever seen.

Travel Blogger Iceland

After passing the Fimmvörðuskáli hut, we emerged into serious glacier land, and were forced to trudge across huge banks of snow. The terrain was surreal. Between the snowbanks were fields of lava, strange tiny cones of ash and sinister black craters. At one point, we noticed that the land was smoking. The ground here was still super-heated from the 2010 explosion of Eyjafjallajökull. I reached down to touch the soil, digging down before yanking my fingers back. It was a little much for my mind to process… was I supposed to freezing here, or burning?

Once we had the smoking landscape of snow and lava behind us, the sky cleared up and Þórsmörk came into view. This valley is one of the most beautiful areas in Iceland. In fact, when we asked locals about their favorite places, Þórsmörk was the most common answer. And I can see why. Having it laid out before us from the mountain heights was absolutely magical.

With the valley visible below, we figured the final few hours of our hike would be easy. Nope… nothing like it. This was by far the most challenging stretch of the day, requiring extremely steep descents on tricky terrain, at a point when we were already physically and mentally fatigued. Some sections even forced us into scooching along the ground on our butts, terrified about kicking loose a stone and tumbling down.

But slowly, slowly we made it. Our tent was waiting for us at the campsite of Básar, and we had just enough energy left to set it up before collapsing into our sleeping bags. It had been quite a day… we’ve done a lot of hiking in different places around the world, but I don’t think for sheer, majestic nature, anything holds a candle to the Fimmvórðuhals.

Locations on our Map: Fimmvörðuskáli Hut | Básar

Lava Cave Tour And Blue Lagoon Visit

Ice Fimmvörðuskáli
Mini Volcanoes Iceland
Fimmvörðuskáli
Between Glacier Hike
Best Hike In Iceland
Fimmvörðuskáli Wanderung
Snow Volcano Iceland
Fimmvörðuskáli Hike
Fimmvörðuskáli Iceland
Strange Weather In Iceland
Bizarre Iceland
Metling Water Iceland
Amazing Iceland
Iceland Blog
Eyjafjallajökull
Eyjafjallajökull Lava
Lava Field Eyjafjallajökull
Eyjafjallajökull Hike
Snow In The Middle Of Nowhere
Hiking Iceland
Amazing Hikes In Iceland
Þórsmörk Hikes
Þórsmörk
On Top Of Þórsmörk
Iceland Dude
Hiking In Iceland
Þórsmörk Iceland
Þórsmörk Waterfalls
Iceland Þórsmörk
Glacier Near Þórsmörk
WOW
Iceland
Beautiful Iceland
Sunset Iceland
Iceland Rolling Hills
Sunset hike Iceland
, , , , , , , , ,
September 17, 2013 at 8:32 am Comments (8)

A Day in the Hornstrandir

Add to Flipboard Magazine.

The Hornstrandir Nature Reserve, in the northwestern corner of Iceland, has been almost completely spared from the corrupting fingertips of mankind. No roads scar the landscape and there are no permanent residents, unless you count the arctic foxes which abound in its hills. We spent a long day exploring a small section of the reserve.

Red House Valley

Hornstrandir is a major destination for hikers seeking to get away from civilization, and most stay for four or five days, walking from one end of the peninsula to the other. The experience must be incredible. Unfortunately, our schedule didn’t allow for such a long excursion, so we had to be satisfied with a cursory peek into Iceland’s wildest corner.

The ferry let us out at Hesteyri, where there’s a café/guesthouse catering to hikers passing through. A number of ports around the peninsula are irregularly served by tour companies based in Ísafjörður, but Hesteyri is the easiest to reach. By the way, the process of booking tickets to Hornstrandir was the most frustrating and expensive part of our trip. If you’re planning a journey, try to arrange tickets as early as possible.

With seven hours to kill, we decided on a hike to Aðalvík Bay, just over a hill to the west of Hesteyri. This was a simple hike, with a clearly-defined trail and moderate incline. The lack of challenge was initially disappointing, as I had been expecting, and perhaps unconsciously hoping for, a “vicious clash with nature” in the lonely reaches of the Hornstrandir. But since we didn’t have to waste time searching for the trail or battling the elements, we were better able to appreciate the amazing nature surrounding us.

Flower hike Iceland

Our path went through a gorgeous field of purple and yellow flowers, over patches of snow and through a massive field of stones, and we needed two hours to arrive at an overlook from where we could see Aðalvík Bay. There was a lonely red farm house below us and a beach of white sand, but we didn’t descend. We wanted to make it back to Hesteyri with time to spare, since there was something else which warranted our attention.

A couple kilometers from the guesthouse are the remains of a decommissioned Norwegian whaling station, called Stekkeyri. Following the station’s founding in 1894, Hesteyri grew into a functioning community with a few families residing there full-time. But when the factory closed up in 1940, the settlement was abandoned. The skeletal remains of Stekkeyri are easy to reach from the guesthouse, and fun to poke around.

Locations on our Map: Hesteyri | Aðalvík

Buy Your Travel Insurance For Iceland Here

Bolungarvik
Boat Window
Rough Boat Ride
Portaits
Bolungarvik Coast
Hornstrandir Fjords
Hesteyri Iceland
Hesteyri Kayaking
Hesteyri Iceland
Laundry In iceland
Viking Colors
Hesteyri Mountain
Hornstrandir Blog
Fresh Waterh Hesteyri
Small River Hornstrandir
Snow And Moss
Moss Iceland
Moss Landscapes Iceland
Snow Walk Iceland
Snow Cliffs Hornstrandir
Hiking In Iceland
Rock Tree Iceland
Berry Iceland
Hikers Iceland
Hornstrandir Flowers
Aðalvík Bay
Aðalvík Valley
Outdoor Gear Iceland
House Hornstrandir
Hiker In Iceland
Cloud Heart Iceland
Creepy Icealnd
Whaling Station Hornstrandir
Whaling Station
Whaling Station Oven
Walstatotion Island
Island Travel
Heating Whaling Station
Whaling Station Tank
Flowers Iceland
Landscapes Hornstrandir
Icelandic Mountain Guides
Splash
Iceland Dramatic Photos
Hills Of Iceland
Iceland Blog
Ísafjörður Boat
Iceland Photos Framed

<!– div.centerimg { margin-top:10px; } –>

, , , , , , ,
August 29, 2013 at 4:07 pm Comments (2)
The Lavafield of Leirhnjkur Not far from the Viti Crater on the northeastern side of Mývatn, we encountered the lavafield of Leirhnjúkur, which is part of the Krafla volcanic region. Nearly thirty years after the last eruptions, the ground here is still smoking and hot to the touch.
For 91 Days