Dettifoss, Hverfjall

In the morning we realize that the clouds have completely obstructed the view over volcanoes. It's raining. Good morning!

In the room we have a coffee-set. After the bad coffees we've been drinking on Iceland we finally have a good Nescafe. It's cold outside. We return back the road for some 30 km and than turn on the road to Detifoss. 28 kilometers of a very bad dirt road follow. The landscape is completely gray, we have our lights on (as the law requires, anyway). It's quite difficult to spot the holes in the road.


Suddenly we hit a big rock on the road. There are so many rocks all around that I failed to notice that *this* one was a bit bigger. We check the lower part of the car, there seems to be no damage. It *does* make sense to have a jeep in Iceland. We soon reach Detifoss, the biggest waterfall in Europe, located in the rocky Jokulsargljurfur canyon. The wind is so strong that I decide to wrap my head in a piece of clothing. It looks weird but at least I won't get cold. It feels like we're in Siberia. We approach the waterfall with great care. Rocks near the waterfall are wet and slippery.

The next destination before returning to the lake is Krafla, a volcano that was active for the last time in 1984. The access road to Krafla leads through a large lava field. There's a geothermal station on Krafla. We stop at the edge of the crater Viti, with a green lake inside it. As the wind is strong and it's snowing we don't walk too much around. We get back to Myvatn. It's a 37 km² big lake, with many birds that nest here. Luckily, we were very tired last night - some birds near the hotel were *very* loud in the night. The average depth of the lake is 2 m and the maximal is 4 m. There is luxuriant (for Iceland) vegetation around the lake.

Hverfjall volcano
Hverfjall volcano

We turn off the main road and after having driven a few km through some low vegetation we arrive near volcano Hverfjall. Located in the middle of a plain, made of gray rock and quite impressive - the diameter of the crater is 1400 m, and its internal depth is 300 m. We manage to climb to the top of the crater. It's nice to walk around the crater but the wind was so fierce that we couldn't do it.


Not distant from Hverfjall there is Dimmuborgir, a place where in a past eruption lava reached the surface and built strange formations. We walk for a while among them. Then we say goodbye to the lake and head north. We stop at Godafoss ("Waterfall of Gods"), the waterfall where, the legend says, the chieftain of Icelandic tribes threw the statues of pagan gods after Iceland accepted Christianity.

We reach Eyjafjordur, a beautiful fjord with the city of Akureyri, the second biggest city in Iceland (with 15000 inhabitants), much nicer than Reykjavik. Although located in the north of Iceland, the climate in Akureyri is mild. In Akureyri we find the café Blaa Kannann (in Iceland one can't get a cup of coffee anywhere). The list of drinks is in Icelandic and French, so I see they have espresso on offer (for the first and last time in Iceland) - something we don't miss.

From Akureyri on, the road is mostly made of tarmac. We arrive to Glammbaer, once a settlement and today a museum that witnesses the style of life of old Icelanders. They lived in small houses with roofs covered with soil, until 1936. We're heading west. At 23:00 we stop near one of numerous creeks and sleep a little in the car.

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Iceland: Return home
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