Day 8 : From Landmannalaugar to Eldgja
We did about 40 km today that couldn't have been worse; it was cold and rainy, but it was also a lot of fun. The most interesting parts were the river crossings that we had to do barefoot – so as not to get our socks wet, of course. At the first river we didn’t really know what to do, so it took us a very long time to cross. After a few rivers we realized that we would be better off cycling while wearing our flip-flops and just crossing right away, rather than wasting too much time taking off our shoes.
It was *hella* cold for those 40 km, seeing as the water in the rivers came from the glaciers on top of the mountains (as you can see in the pictures). What I saw along this route was amazing but, unfortunately, I couldn't stop to take pictures as much as I would have liked due to the weather conditions. We also met a group of three Swiss, which gave us a bit of company and energy for the rest of that hard day.
Day 9 : Going to Kirkjubæjarklaustur
We woke up with the sunshine so we took some time to dry our wet clothes from the day before. It was truly a nice day so we started to cycle away from Landmannalaugar and the mountains. It was so beautiful that we stopped often to take pictures.
After about 60 km, we arrived in Kirkjubæjarklaustur. We put up our tents, then got talking to this Icelandic family camped right next to us. They had lived in Winnipeg for two years and in Ottawa for five years and their son was a Senators fan, so we talked about hockey and Canada for a while. They told us about some Icelandic stuff like their 13 Santas and the tradition of putting shoes next to the window 13 days before Christmas Day – each morning, the shoes should have a little present inside. It's kind of like our tradition of hanging Christmas stockings by the fireplace, but there are no fireplaces in Iceland since there is no wood to burn. They also gave us an Icelandic alcoholic drink that had the taste and texture of cold syrup. After all of this we finally got to bed.
Day 10 : From Kirkjubæjarklaustur to Skaftafell
It was a very hard day! It was cold and rainy, plus we had to do about 70 km with lots of wind coming from every direction. I'm really proud of myself today. I visited a little museum about the glacier and volcano to dry off and rest from my long, hard day. I learned a lot of cool stuff, too. After some nice hot soup, I am going to sleep with a little bit of music. The battery in my ipod is almost dead.
Day 11 : Chillin' in Skaftafell national park
I woke up to a beautiful day with the Sun shining. It was a perfect day to sleep in and then go out to enjoy the sights. I went to see a beautiful waterfall; as you can see in the pictures, it’s in a volcanic mountain so the shapes of the rocks are very interesting. I also walked closer to the “tongue” of the glacier. The ice has black dust on it because of the volcanic activity underneath the glacier. Basically, it was a very nice day to just rest my legs and restore my energy for the next day.
Day 12 : From Skafttafell to Jökulsárlón
I woke up with an icy mountain in front of me, which made me really happy. It wasn't sunny, but at least there wasn't any rain or wind. I started on my way to Jökulsárlón; after about 60 km (of nothing, really) I arrived at this magnificent place. “WOW!” again and again!!! There’s a lake at the bottom of the glacier, and chunks of ice fall off the glacier to create icebergs in the lake.
As I was going to stay here for the night, I put up my tent in front of this beautiful, unique landscape and cooked a little something to eat before going to bed. As I was eating, I heard this loud noise, kind of like a busy construction site in the city: it was an iceberg breaking in half. It was fun to see the iceberg spinning around in the water after it broke apart – very impressive.
Day 13 : On my way to Höfn
I woke up this morning with those beautiful icebergs, so I walked around the lake a little more. I left for Höfn in the afternoon, arriving in time for supper. It's a town of about 600 people, which is a lot for Iceland. I'll stay here for two nights to rest and see what it has to offer.
Day 14 : In Höfn just relaxing
I took the day in Höfn to relax, shower and visit the area. I visited two little museums; one was about boats and how the Icelanders used to fish. The second one was an old house and it showed how Icelanders used to live, basically inside the house and on the farm. As I understand it, while the men were fishing, the women were taking care of the house and doing the farm work.
It was a relaxing day with a bit of sunshine.