Towards wild routes: Thórsmörk and Eyjafjallajökull, Iceland
I have already told you that Iceland is amazing, that its landscapes captivated me, which looks like another planet. * They say that Iceland never becomes… And it is that you hook and love-Frank Coronado. Today I want to share with you the most amazing places I could visit in Iceland: Thórsmörk and Eyjafjallajökull. For this we booked a day tour with Midgard Adventure.
Our meeting point was the beautiful waterfall of Seljalandfoss. It is an impressive waterfall, very high and caudalosa and never misses on any itinerary by Iceland. However on this occasion we did not were entertained too much time here: We had a lot to explore and our goal was to discover Iceland's most hidden face.
Our first stop was the black sand beach Landeyjahöfn Beach, next to the port of the Westmann Islands. Our Stefnir guide told us about the formation of these islands: they are very young and rugged. The most recent is Surtsey, which is part of the landscape since the year 1963, after an underwater eruption. A visit to these islands will be mandatory stop on my next trip to Iceland. It is the best way to meet some of the millions of puffins who take refuge there and it is also possible to visit a volcano. To visit the Westmann Islands it is necessary to take a ferry from the port of Landeyjahöfn. The day was cold and breezy and on the shore of the beach came wind-borne fish. After taking the photographs timely we climbed back to the superjeep and headed to our next stop, still not knowing what would bring us this day.
Gígjökull, the glacier that used to be a lake
Going through our big tires the Virgin snow and wading rivers we reach the Gígjökull glacier. Once there we made a simple walk through the snow to get to the cave of the glacier. We were alone, totally surrounded by huge white mountains. We could feel lucky to have come this far. Gígjökull was the Gígjökulslón lake up to the eruption of the volcano Eyjafjallajökull in the year 2010, which changed the landscape completely. At that moment all the water disappeared as if by magic leaving behind a very different place.
Thórsmork, the Valley of Thór
Our next destination was the Thórsmörk nature reserve. It is one of the most beautiful places in all of Iceland: It is a glacial valley between the glaciers of Eyjafjallajökull and Myrdalsjökull. The way to get to Thórsmork in winter is amazing: surrounded by snow, without any clue where the road is, is there really any road? -and again wading through rivers we arrived at one of the most emblematic locations in the series Game of Thrones. The tranquility that you could feel here is absolute: We were the only visitors of the day. As we were near Volcano Huts and could distinguish small footprints in the snow I ask Stefnir if we can find Arctic foxes. He told Me that they are very chiquitines and that they do not usually approach humans, but who knows, that maybe he is lucky. Suddenly Stefnir runs to me saying "you've been lucky!" and points far, just where one of these little Arctic stuffed animals is located. At first I had a hard time seeing it, but I finally got it! Unfortunately I did not have the right objective to be able to photograph it at that distance, but it was one of those moments when it doesn't matter to forget about the camera in order to live the experience.
The Eyjafjallajökull volcano
Stefnir asked us if we were in a hurry: Of course not! None of us wanted this wonderful day to end. Then we begin the ascent to the volcano of the unpronounceable name. Eyjafjallajökull became famous in its eruption in the year 2010, when it threw such a quantity of volcanic ash into the atmosphere that it came to shut down air traffic throughout Europe. During this day we checked the effects that this eruption provoked in the landscape, as in Gígjökull. In order to climb to Eyjafjallajökull it was necessary to deflate the Superjeep's huge wheels a few times. Circling the ice slope was getting harder and more than one grabbed at what he could in the car. When we got to the top we found an unparalleled view: we were suddenly surrounded by an ocean of milk. So we end the day, in the sweetest possible way: With a warm coffee, chocolate biscuits and the most breathtaking views of Iceland. In addition, Stefnir gave us an accordion concert that made the moment worthy of being remembered forever.
Thórsmork for free or on organized tour?
The tour we made with Midgard Adventure is called Midgard Surprise. Depending on the weather conditions and the state of the roads, the expert guides decide what to visit and encourage you to get carried away. Do not ask what you are going to visit: Just let yourself be surprised… It'll be worth it. Fortunately this tour included Thórsmork and Eyjafjallajökull, the places I wanted to discover with them. In addition to getting to the most inaccessible part of Iceland in winter, we learned a lot about geology, flora and fauna and the recent history of Iceland. Visiting Thórsmörk on your own in winter can be very dangerous. A 4×4 is not enough to face the conditions of the terrain and reach all these places is impossible if it is not with a superjeep like those used in Midgard and dangerous if you do not know the place thoroughly. The experience was well worth it. Tell me what you thought of this part of Iceland. Would you be encouraged to visit her?