Trousers on, trousers off


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Europe » Iceland » South » Höfn
June 25th 2022
Published: June 25th 2022
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Trousers on, trousers off


We have woken to a bright clear day…and dare I say it even quite warm!

We have a couple of things to see near to our campsite. The first is a small waterfall with a pool below that is safe to swim in. It’s just across the road to our camp site. If only I had realised this yesterday I’d have been in there! Not only did last nights camp site have no showers, but it had no hot water either. :-( Apparently we could have gone to the swimming pool in town to get a shower…but as the pool closed at 8pm and we didn’t find out till 7.45pm that was useless too!

We wander back to the van and drive a mile back down the road to see ‘the church floor’. This is a set of hexagonal basalt stones, created naturally by volcanic action, sitting in the middle of a field. It’s similar to the giants causeway but on a much smaller scale.

Now we’re off to see another waterfall. It requires a two mile hike in each direction and it would have been very easy to give it a miss as the back of my heel is still raw from the rubbed blister on day one. I decide that I will try thin socks in my boots rather than my thick walking ones and this makes it a little more bearable.

The hike to Svartifloss is an uphill slog. The upside if this is that we don’t see as many people as we have done elsewhere. And, of course, once we get there we are very glad we didn’t miss it! The waterfall is surrounded by rows and rows of basalt columns - never seen anything like this before. And the return trip is a doddle because it’s all downhill!

The information boards at the visitor centre display photographs of the glacier year by year as the ice retreats. It’s a solemn warning on how much has been lost in the last twenty years due to global warming.

Back at the van we have our lunch and decide that it’s really too hot for our thick trousers and have a quick change into some cooler clothing.

We now have a scenic drive across the moraine valley downhill from the glacier. The wind is blowing very hard and Ian is complaining that it’s hard to keep the van driving straight!

We have reached Fjallsarlon where there is a glacial lake. We get of the van and the wind nearly knocks us over. Thin trousers off and thick ones back on, as well as fleeces, hats, gloves and waterproofs!

The lake has lots of floating icebergs in various shapes and sizes…one looks like a polar bear to me. Some of them are blue in color. It’s an amazing sight but there is more to come just down the road at Jokulsarlon, the main event.

We can take our pick of parking spots at Jokularson as it’s a much bigger lake and also not so far to walk in the biting wind. Another expanse of floating delights await our pleasure. Across the road is Diamond Beach, so named for the floating icebergs.

Now it’s on to our camp with just a brief stop at Hali to see porbergssetur - a building that looks like a bookshelf!

It’s coming up 5pm and we have arrived at our campsite. Ian comments that all he can see is a portacabin…yes but it’s a portacabin with a shower in it! Hoorah. The shower is lovely too. They charge us an extra six quid for the privilege but never mind, it was just what we needed.

Tonight we are trying out some Icelandic fish burgers for our evening meal. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect but actually they are very tasty.

We decide on an early night and make up the bed. But where are our phones…both have gone missing! We search every part of the van and conclude they must be in the bed somewhere…I look on my iPad and find a way of sending a tone to my phone…we can hear it faintly but still can’t work out where…finally we work it out…it’s in the under seat storage…along with Ian’s phone…how on earth did they end up there!

And now for another panic. I check on our credit card and see multiple purchases that we don’t recognise from the fuel station this morning. Forty minutes of music on hold and I finally get through to the ‘emergency’ helpline! Turns out that it’s just the way the petrol pumps work here…they charge you for a full tank on your credit card but it just sits in pending fir a few days and they only charge for fuel you actually take. Plus we gave a rejected charge because we didn’t work out how to use the self service quickly enough! It’s all very complicated but apparently nothing to worry about!

So it’s now 10pm and our early night is down the pan…and I have to summon up the courage to dash across to the loos in the howling wind outside!


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