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The Highlands at Snćfell —
The Wondrous World of River Jökla
and Kringilsárrani “Peninsula”

8 days backpacking + provisions by car.  Departure: 13th July 2006 (A1)


Jökulsá á Dal – Eyjabakkar – Snćfell – Lindur – Jökla – Rauđaflúđ – Sauđafellsalda – Kringilsá – Brúarjökull – Kringilsárrani – Hraukar – Töfrafoss – Stuđlagátt – Laugavalladalur
Hafrahvammar – Kárahnjúkar

-- Itinerary--

DAY 1:
Departure by car from Egilsstađir village at 9:15 am. En route to Kárahnjúkar area via Fljótsdalur valley. Hike up by a series of waterfalls on glacial river Jökla, altogether 15 falls and numerous magnificent rapids. Visibility allowing, the King of Icelandic mountains, Snćfell, our destination, is in magnificent view. Extra shoes for wading may come in handy as the wetlands, brooks, and streams feeding Jökla are liable to grow during the summer. Rendezvous with Sibbi, our driver, is planned before marching on to our camp at the roots of Snćfell where we will stay for two nights in the bosom of glaciers and mountains after a long day’s journey.

DAY 2: (daypack)
This day is dedicated to the unique Eyjabakkar wetlands, formed by the fine silt deposited by glacial river Jökulsá á Fljótsdal. An unparalleled oasis of vegetation, 650m above sea level, habitat of most of the known species of highland vegetation, some of them very rare. We will head in the direction of Eyjabakka glacier and will inspect Hraukar, magnificent examples of terminal moraines, and the neighbouring tarns, in an area where reindeer and pink-footed geese feed and roam. We will trek to our camp in the neighbourhood of the planned site of the Eyjabakkar dam. This is where a group of artists and other lovers of nature enacted a performance to protest against the destruction of the site.

DAY 3: (daypack)
Weather allowing, we will climb Snćfell mountain as it affords a magnificent view in all directions. On the west side, over Brúarjökull glacier, the Western highlands and Brúardalur valley are in view along with the mountains Kverkfjöll, Dyngjufjöll, and Herđubreiđ. To the east, we’ll see Eyjabakkajökull and Ţrándarjökull glaciers, Dyngjufjöll mountain, and the Austfirđir mountain range. If visibility is limited, we will inspect the extraordinary oases of Vesturörćfi heath. In this area one finds, quite uniquely, continuous vegetation from the roots of the glacier down to the coast. Our journey goes on from here, by bus to Sauđahnjúkar mounts, on foot through the wetlands with its colourful birdlife. The direction is set for Kárahnjúkar and our camp in the vicinity of Lindur, a natural spring.

DAY 4: (daypack)
Our driver Sibbi, will take us to Sauđá river. We will follow Sauđá downstream to Jökla river. From there we will head south, following Jökla upstream, by its canyons and verdant banks, to look at the impressive columnar basalt formations and nests of pink-footed geese. We will see the “red“ rapids in Jökla, called „Rauđuflúđir“. Our route will take us through a grown area to our camp for the night in Sauđafellsalda hill.

DAY 5 (full backpack)
We will march to the terminal moraines to the west of Kringilsá river up to Brúarjökull glacier. We will have lunch before scaling the glacier. If the sun is out, it is advisable to use sunscreen lotion and a have a pair of sunglasses handy. From the glacier we will continue to the preserved area of Kringilsárrani peninsula. We will camp for two nights in the vicinity of tarns on Kringilsárrani.

DAY 6: (daypack)
We will get to know the unique sanctuary of Kringilsárrani. We will spend the day enjoying serenity, natural beauty and a surprisingly varied fauna. We will take a look at the geology of Brúarjökull glacier the sediments and moraines of which probably offer the most visible, best-known history of any outlet-glacier in the world. We will inspect the feeding area of reindeer and the pink-footed geese, rare highland vegetation, canyons, rapids, waterfalls, sediment terraces, terminal moraines and other glacial vestiges.

DAY 7: (full backpack)
We will march due north on Kringilsárrani by Hraukar moraines to Töfrafoss waterfall, which we will be able to admire from its east bank. We will take our lunch break before continuing up to where Jökla river and Kringilsá river meet. Awaiting us there will be the tow-ferry made by farmer Guđmundur á Vađi. After crossing the river, we will march on to meet Sibbi by Sauđafell. He will take us up to Laugavalladalur valley where we will camp for the last night. In the valley one can take a mountain bath. We will put up a party tent and prepare for BBQ and fun, red wine and a leg of lamb.

DAY 8: (daypack)
We will enjoy the unique Laugavalladalur valley. We will see the greatest river canyons in Iceland, Hafrahvammagljúfur. We will make a short stop by the site of the planned Kárahnjúkavirkjunar dam (protest stand for those who feel like it). From there the car will take us to Egilsstađir village in time for our late-afternoon flight.


Our journey starts at Egilsstađir village, where passengers will be picked up at 9:00 am. At the end of the journey they will be dropped off at the same place in time for the late afternoon flight.

The journey is a blend of backpacking and travel by car with provisions carried by car.
a) the provisions, tents and such will be transported by car or left at campsite. During 6 days it is therefore only necessary to carry light daypacks, with food and protective clothing.
b) 2 days backpacking will be with a full load.

Some of the day-journeys are short while others are longer. Our pace however will be comfortable and rather slow. The elevation is not great except when we walk upstream by glacial river, Jökulsá in Fljótsldalur, on the first day, during which we cover the greatest distance.

NB! Food is not provided by Augnablik in this treck, hikers bring their own food.

NB: the last evening’s BBQ is included, as well as breakfast and nourishment on the last day.

Price: IKR 40.000

Included in the package: guided tour, provisions and travel by car. Last evening’s BBQ in Grágćsadalur valley, breakfast and camping food the day after. Yoga sessions in the mornings and evenings.

Guides: Ásta Arnardóttir og Ósk Vilhjálmsdóttir
Driver: Sigurbjörn Árnason
Yoga teacher: Ásta Arnardóttir

Note that the outlined itinerary is subject to change at the discretion of the guides.

Bookings: Ţuríđur Einarsdóttir:
Tel: (354) 8644012

Confirmation fee IKR 5.000 payable to the Augnablik account 0306-26-883 SSN. 670793-2499. Please remember to state full name. Confirmation fee non-refundable.
Introductory meeting to be announced.

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