Day 5 (June 25)
Sleep does not come until late in the evening. Between time zone
shifts, and latitude drifts north, there is no darkness, time is an
improbable measurement. So I get what I can, and try to hold on the
rest of the time to a schedule.
We head north again, to Stykkishólmur, on the north coast of the Snæfellsnes
Peninsula (do ask for pronunciations when I return). This was where I
took my first 360 degree cubic VR of the trip, and was the site of my
I had not realized until this morning, how vast Iceland is in fact. I
wanted to go to the western fjords, but alas this was a trip that would
require another week to accomplish. Stykkishólmur
is where one can take a ferry to the fjords and bypass many rough
roads, a ferry I will take on another trip. We checked in early at our
new inn, but decided to have dinner nearby early as well since lunch
eluded us. Freed of dinner and accommodation issues, we went east and
north to the Vatnsnes peninsula, to circle it before midnight in the
great light of the day.
We passed through Osar on a great alluvial plain on the east side of
the Vatnsnes peninsula. The wind was roaring from the north but we
managed a few shots of the large bay between Blönduós and the Vatnsnes peninsula.
Good fortune was upon us stumbling into the path horseback riders
herding 100 Icelandic horses down a rural road. We followed slowly for
half an hour. Stopping and starting as they did on the road.
Then, after speaking to some of the participants at the rear, we were
informed that they were on day five of their trail ride. We were
allowed to pass, so we could photograph then from in front. It
was all about the light, and that was just about perfect at 4 p.m.
These are beautiful horses. Unlike other horses of the world the
Icelandic breed have another gait that they can execute and it’s as
smooth and fluid as the Icelandic tongue.
We stayed the night at the head of Hrútafjörður fjord on the north
coast of Iceland. Returning late, almost to the hotel, I looked across
the fjord to see the "earth glow" from the late evening sun off the low
Day 4 (June 24)
I’ll get in the swing of things here soon I am sure. Like the first time I heard "Icelandic" spoken on the airplane, it was a shock at first, but then it comes to sound like the flow of a babbling brook, smooth and continuous. I should speak so well, let alone write. I have so many images I am working on simultaneously that it is hard to let go of the fact that I will not get to finish all of them in the space and time I have, I should just close this box and keep shooting.
Which I will do in a moment… but I had to show my girlfriend of yesterday (I type this on the beginning of day 5). She was somewhat short, but lovely, and had an eye for me, as I did for her.
We headed further west out the Snaefellsnes Peninsula towards the entrance to the center of the earth in the Snaefellsjoekull volcano (see: Jules Verne, JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH).
We stopped at a black church in Búðir. N64° 49′ 18.92", W23° 23′ 5.89" exactly, all of these images are "geotagged". First constructed on this site in 1703, and again in 1850. This apparently is a modern day replica of the 1850 church.
Few churches on Iceland have such a stunning location. The photo of Steve (upper left) in the car, is the parking lot of the church. A group of "birders" were there in the parking lot too, on tour with multiple spotting scopes. One showed me a Ptarmigan which was nesting on a chunk of lava.
There were several farms/homes that appeared to be built next to other entrances to the underworld as well.
The rumbling earth must give them pause for a whole new appreciation of life in their home! The one on the right looked like they had built next to the entrance to hell.
Along the way we stopped at Anarstapi for a dramatic walk along the cliffs of extruded volcanic rock now graced with black sand beaches… then on to Hellnar for lunch in a spectacular setting above the sea and below Snæfellsjökull volcano. The Fjöruhúsið Café on the water (right image) is highly recommended. I wish that we’d had the time to hike along the coastal trail back to Búðir.
Some of the cliffs seem to form a strange face, frozen in geologic time. We circled the volcano along a rough dirt & gravel road, passing a bicyclist, who walking with her panier-laden conveyance, had written all over her face, "what have I gotten myself into now."