68 Photos - Aug 6, 2012
Photo: Whale watching!Photo: Puffin island in the backgroundPhoto: Supposedly the best hot dogs in IcelandPhoto: Hallgrímskirkja in ReykjavikPhoto: We started hiking at about 12:40, soon after our bus arrived at  LandmannalaugarPhoto: Colorful rhyolite mountains at the start of the trailPhoto: We avoided walking on the snow as much as possiblePhoto: The views got better the higher we got on the ridgePhoto: Rhyolite mountains on the LaugavegurPhoto: The trail arcs to the rightPhoto: The good weather would only last for another hour or twoPhoto: The landscape changed soon after we hit this plateauPhoto: The trail became quite snow covered soon after this pointPhoto: Stórihver overlookPhoto: StórihverPhoto: Despite the forbidding landscape, there was plenty of green moss and lichen growingPhoto: The hut at Hrafntinnusker, about 7.5 mi and +1500 ft from the starting point at LandmannalaugarPhoto: Serene hurriedly packing up after the weather broke during our coffee break at the hutPhoto: Shortly after leaving HrafntinnuskerPhoto: The landscape was still pretty despite the bad weatherPhoto: There was more elevation change than expected because the trail bisected these ravinesPhoto: We got to enjoy another hour of good weather before a large storm hitPhoto: Hrafntinnusker is at the base of the last ridge in the backgroundPhoto: Photo: Leaving the rhyolite mountains with views of Mýrdalsjökull.Photo: Dark palagonite mountains framing Álftavatn (lake in the back)Photo: Bad weather arriving while descending the JökultungurPhoto: We crossed the river Grashagakvísl here after being hailed on for the last half an hourPhoto: The huts at Álftavatn, about 7.5 mi and -1600 ft from HrafntinnuskerPhoto: Leaving Álftavatn the next morningPhoto: Rickety looking bridge over KaldaklofskvíslPhoto: Not as bad as it looked from farPhoto: Finished with the second river crossing of the day, this one across Blafjallakvisl, which was slightly over knee deepPhoto: The trail follows a road for a bit before branching off to the left towards the mountainsPhoto: The sun occasionally peeked outPhoto: Storkonufell on the way to BotnarPhoto: Photo: The Botnar huts, about 9.3 mi and 2 river crossings from Álftavatn, where we took a pita and nutella lunch stop. Another 9.3 mi and some amount of elevation change to the next stop!Photo: Descending to the canyon of Syðri – EmstruáPhoto: The river Syðri – Emstruá is at the bottom of the gorgePhoto: The river is fed from one of the snouts of the Mýrdalsjökull on the top leftPhoto: Syðri – EmstruáPhoto: Bridge over the Syðri – Emstruá riverPhoto: Hiking past basalt columnsPhoto: The Almenningar areaPhoto: The third and last river (Þröngá) crossing of the day. We did not pick a good spot and it was knee rather than mid calf deepPhoto: Serene looks pleased because she thinks we're almost done for the day. It turned out that we had another hour to the Basar hutPhoto: Climbing out of the Þórsmörk valley on our way to SkogarPhoto: This section and the ridge behind were a little loose and narrow with steep dropsPhoto: Enjoying views of the amazing Þórsmörk valleyPhoto: Two snouts of the Mýrdalsjökull, Tungnakvislarjökull on the left and Hrunajökull on the rightPhoto: The path arcs to the right up to the Morinsheiði plateauPhoto: Útigönguhöfði in the backPhoto: Serene climbing up to the Morinsheiði plateauPhoto: A view of the Mýrdalsjökull before the weather moved inPhoto: Photo: Short gaiters, a pack cover and good rain gear were pretty nice to have on this hikePhoto: The Morinsheiði plateau is the flat area behind SerenePhoto: Photo: Serene poking at the volcanic pumice at the base of Magni that erupted in 2010 before the main Eyjafjallajökull eruptionPhoto: Magni in the foggy background. Eyjafjallajökull is somewhere behind MagniPhoto: Low clouds moved in soon after and we located the trail on the snow covered ground by looking out for the yellow postsPhoto: Fimmvörðuháls passPhoto: The fog got really thick around the emergency hut and we couldn't see the next post. Fortunately, a party of 4 European backpackers were just leaving the hut holding a GPS device so we tagged along till we got out of the fog around the Skógaá riverPhoto: We emerged from the fog after reaching the Skógaá river, and we followed it to Skogar, stopping at many waterfalls along the wayPhoto: Finally at Skógafoss after 15 mi and +3000 ftPhoto: Looking much cleaner the next day before catching our bus back to Reykjavik. The bus also made a brief stop at Seljalandsfoss where we ran behind the waterfallPhoto: Serene running through the mist behind Seljalandsfoss