Sunday, 3 August 2014

Day 90: Akureyri to Lake Myvatn - Sun 3 Aug

Day 90: Akureyri to Lake Myvatn - Sun 3 Aug
Crikey, a HOT morning - needed air conditioning by time we got underway!! Akureyri is such a pretty town, prettier than Reykjavik. Cruise ships in port certainly make a city look exotic. 

Turned towards Lake Myvatn, only 100 kms drive this morning. Stopped at the pretty, and powerful, Godafoss Falls – and what a nice change, one of the easiest to walk to! It is said the lawspeaker Porgeir Ljosvetningogodi threw all his Norse statues into these falls after converting to Christianity. 


His and Hers - Icelandic style

Darker clouds rolling in (tourist T-shirts say weather changes every 5 minutes). Turned to go around eastern shore of lake (named accurately for its midges!!) to Skutustadir Pseudo-Craters, formed by massive overheated steam eruptions (not lava for a change). The green banks were rich in bird/ duck life around lake with its striking tuff-ring volcano. 


Slavonian Grebe

Stopped at Hofoi lava stacks, some standing in the water. 


Next was Dimmuborgir lava field, with its cave mouths, and grotesque holes in lava stacks.  We laughed to read about 13 Yule lads, local “vicious” trolls who come down from the mountains for their annual bath, one troll a night in the thirteen days before Christmas. Each leaves a gift for the good children in their best shoe, or a raw potato for the not-so-good! 

Mother Grylan eats a stew of naughty children
Lads include Spoon Licker, Sausage Stealer, Door Slammer

Examined impressive Hverfjall tephra (volcanic material) cone/ tuff ring volcano, following rough corrugations on track – apparently part of Kafla fissure swarm. 

Next was Grjotagja caves with hot springs, extensive fissures running throughout. 

Stopped at Hverarond geothermal area - blue lagoons, Namaskard/ Hverir solfataras, mud pools, boiling water pools, heavy with sulphur emissions (people wheezing, coughing and covering mouths and noses). Stopped to feel temperature of a shower standing solitary on side of road (sadly "no camping" in case travelers are tempted!). 


Walked up side of Viti crater, peering into its blue lake, and looked out towards Krafla volcano, getting up close to the lava "road" it produced. 

Pulled off side of ring road east of Lake Myvatn for night, far enough away not to be affected by sulphur fumes. 

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