Heading to Svartifoss

DverghamrarDverghamrarAfter our stint at Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon, we continued 21 kilometers down the road to a little pull off for Dverghamrar.  This is a tiny stop, but one worth the time out of the car.  Just below the parking area (its obscured from view of the car park) is an area in the middle of two hills comprised of large hexagonal columns.  Another product of Iceland’s volcanic history.  If you line up the view correctly, your picture will have the hills on either side, with a distant, tall, magical waterfall in between them…

DverghamrarRiver near DverghamrarSvartifossAfterwards, back in the car, and back on the road, it wasn’t even a mile before I insisted we pull over!  There was a beautiful rushing river along the north side of the road, and with the mountain side beyond that, the tops obscured in clouds…  It was a magical sight that I just had to get a picture of!!!

Back in the car again, we actually managed to cover some ground this time, eventually arriving at the visitor center for the Skaftafell area.  This was where we would be returning to in the morning for our glacier hike…  Which, by the way, was one of my favorite parts of the whole trip to Iceland…  But, that’s another post!  This evening we were heading to see the waterfall Svartifoss, which was a 2km hike from the visitor center, in the opposite direction of the glacier.

SvartifossOne of the falls below SvartifossAs I said, it was a 2km hike from the visitor’s center.  OR, you could drive a little further down the road to a closer parking lot.  OR, you could continue driving that road, up the hillside, and park at the top of what would have been a decently steep and tall hill to have to climb.  Can you guess which we did?  I was thankful we continued driving…  It was still a bit of a walk to Svartifoss, but overall, not too steep.  We did, however, miss several smaller waterfalls that were along that hillside climb.  Snapped some pictures and video of those as well, as we drove back down the hill (we stopped and got out for those).

Some of the falls below SvartifossHonestly, after all of the waterfalls we had seen thus far, Svartifoss just didn’t feel that impressive to me.  The rock columns that surround this fall, just like Dverghamrar were relatively unique to it, but you couldn’t get very close to the falls.  The path led up to a fencing to keep you back from approaching.  I’m not sure if this was a safety reason, there were large pieces of the column rocks everywhere, so maybe they do break off occasionally.  Even so, crammed on a little bridge and a few rocks with lots of other tourists greatly diminished my appreciation for this waterfall.  Considering the time it takes to walk back to it, if you find yourself short pressed for time, this might be an option worthy for skipping.  At least I can say I’ve seen it…  After returning to the car, we anxiously headed off towards Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, hoping to catch a boat tour of the lagoon!

Not the greatest of video, but you can briefly see this area:

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