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Travel Diaries And More by Samloka
Aug
23.

23.08.08 – Landmannalaugar - Hrafntinnusker [day 1]
By Garik and Lena

  • We woke up for a rainy day. At some point when we were still in our sleeping bags, Lena heard some noises and thought that it’s snow… well this time it was mud. It was very difficult to pack our stuff today because of the rain, wind and mud. We had to separate our stuff between two bags, the one I’m taking on me with sleeping bags and the second one that we were going to send to Þórsmörk. Also we had to pack all the food and water with Lena’s clothes in her smaller 26L bag that she will carry during the trek. We finished packing around 09:00AM and we thought it would be nice to start the trek early. We looked for the local warden to leave him our bag, but we couldn’t find him. So we sat and waited. As time passed, Lena decided to stay till the bus to Reykjavik will arrive, so we can be sure our bag is on the right bus. And so we waited with two French girls who wanted to send their bags as well. At 12:00 AM we went to the green old bus that stands in the camping area, the bus is there for all the summer, selling coffee, sandwiches etc…. We bought two milk chocolate drinks for 400 ISK; we sat in the bus and warmed. When it was over 12:45 we got worried about our bus. At 13:15 we asked the warden whether she know something about the delay of the bus… Right after that, we saw a bus coming, but it was not our bus… This is a bus from Skaftafell to Landmannalaugar and back… we still had to wait. Some people from this bus are heading to Reykjavik, so they stayed waiting with us for the next bus to arrive. We were lucky though, the driver of the bus that just came agreed to take care of our bags, so we can go on to start the trek. We were really concerned about when we start the trek, we knew that the first day is a short one, but we didn’t want to be off schedule… As for the payment – the bus driver told that we will pay at the pickup point. So we started our trek at 13:50, with rain on us and not wearing waterproof pants… bad idea!
  • As we climbed, rain and wind got stronger hitting us in the face, the slope was slippery making it difficult to climb, we were afraid that we were walking too slow and might not find the hut as a fog came down on us. So we stopped only few times to take a picture or two. We didn’t eat during the walk.
  • On our way, we passed some geothermic areas, few small creeks, walked a bit on snow, passed the memorial for Ido Keinan, Israeli guy who died here on June 2004 few km. away from the hut. He didn’t find the hut because of lack of visibility so he stayed out for the night and froze to death. When we passed the memorial, we knew we were close! We kept climbing up into the fog, each time we could see only one post (yellow posts shows the way to the hut). At some point we started to descend and suddenly a hut appears in front of us! It was 17:20 yea! We made it! :) We did it in less than 4 hours! We got inside the hut all wet, we took all our wet clothes off and hang them in the entrance of the hut with lot of other people wet clothes.
  • In the hut we got a bed for two (actually 1 1/2…), we were so happy to be in the hut and not in a tent, that I told the warden that this is the best buy I have ever done! I think he didn’t understand but I didn’t care, all I could care about is poor travelers who had to build their tent outside the hut in the rain, wind and cold weather. For 3000ISK per person per night there is no shower in the hut, the toilets are not the best I’ve ever seen but the kitchen is quite big with lot of dishes and food, that we didn’t had to buy and bring food with us.
  • We sat and rested for a while, Lena made couscous with hot dogs, later we had tea with cookies and blueberries jam. When I went outside to the toilets, I met a couple that just came in the hut, the guy told me that they started the trek at 15:00 after their bus from Reykjavik had some problems on the way and also that they lost their way right at the beginning of the trek… When I came back from the toilets I met another guy that already signed in the hut but disappeared after that, so the warden wanted to go out search for him. Apparently the guy went to see some ice caves near the hut. We decided to ask the warden tomorrow morning about those caves, mean time – goda nott!
Landmannalaugar view

Landmannalaugar view

Geothermic activity

Geothermic activity

On our way up to the hut

On our way up to the hut

Me...

Me...

Ido Keinans' memorial

Ido Keinans' memorial

The HUT!!!

The HUT!!!




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