Iceland 2016 Road Trip, Day 1 — Kerlingarfjöll

posted in: Iceland, Iceland 2016 | 0

We came back to Iceland from Faroe Islands in early afternoon. The Reykjavik Domestic Airport was overcrowded, a stark change from the half-empty “one-room schoolhouse” we saw as we departed for the Faroes, and it took us quite a while to find a person from a Reykjavik Rent-a-Car company who was supposed to wait for us with our rental car. We rented a Suzuki D-Max, a pretty huge 4-wheel drive, diesel guzzling monster. After we paid for the car (4 times the amount that we paid for our rental car in Faroe Islands), we went to find a place to buy SIM cards for the Internet. They come cheap in Iceland. We ended up buying 2 kinds and spending considerable amount of time figuring out the Internet thing. Finally, we set out on the road to our destination for the day – Kerlingarfjöll.

Kerlingarfjöll (Woman’s Mountains) is a mountain area in the highlands of Iceland that has a very advantageous feature: it is located on a road that can be driven on by any vehicle (2- or 4-wheel drive cars). Easily accessible, that is. A road from Reykjavik to Kerlingarfjöll also goes right through the attractions of the Iceland’s Golden Circle, but we did not have time for them, so the only stop we made was a cafe near Geysir.

At the cafe, Alex suddenly felt unwell, fever and all. I gave him some Tylenol, and it was decided that I will drive the rest of the way to Kerlingarfjöll. It took me about 2 hours with some photo stops to get to our destination.

Kjölur route
F35 – Kjölur route
Kjölur route
F35 – Kjölur route
Kjölur route
F35 – Kjölur route
On our way to Kerlingarfjöll
On our way to Kerlingarfjöll
Kjölur route
F35 – Kjölur route

The campsite is very nicely situated, with picturesque cottages on the hilltops.

Campsite at Kerlingarfjöll
Campsite at Kerlingarfjöll
Campsite at Kerlingarfjöll
Campsite at Kerlingarfjöll

We settled at a cozy cottage that had a kitchen area, toilet, basin (no shower, though) and a nice double bed. I wished we had more time to spend in the area.

Inside our cottage at Kerlingarfjöll
Inside our cottage at Kerlingarfjöll

We also took advantage of the camp cafe (they served dinner at the time). We had lamb soup with fresh bread, and that made for a tasty and hearty meal. Totally unexpected but fully understandable was the “no shoes inside camp buildings” policy. It is muddy outside, and it would be very hard to keep the buildings clean if everyone were allowed to wear their hiking boots. Floors inside were warm enough to be comfortable walking in just socks, but next time I will be better prepared and bring some slippers.

Lamb soup
Lamb soup

Around 9pm we were ready to go to explore the area around the camp. We drove over a 4×4 track to a parking lot near a geothermal area. The weather was gloomy — rainy, windy, cold, and all. Alex did not feel well, so overall we were not in a mood for hiking or taking pictures. The parking lot was empty except for one other car, a fellow traveler and photographer packing his equipment and leaving. We looked around and decided to take a short stroll, take some pictures (a la “been here, done that”) and go back to the campsite.

Very soon, however, we noticed that the weather was getting better, so much so the rain stopped and clouds parted to let late evening sun shine on the hills and valleys. It was just majestic, unbelievably beautiful. And we had the whole place to ourselves. We could not leave. We stayed until the sun set and then some.

Kerlingarfjöll
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Alex at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Alex at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Me at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Sunset at Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area
Kerlingarfjöll geothermal area

Back at the campsite, Alex was not feeling well at all and had to take more Tylenol to get the fever down. He went to bed almost immediately, shivering and completely exhausted. I still had to finish some daily routine, back up pictures, charge batteries for various devices, clean some clothes, etc.

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Kerlingarfjöll

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Kerlingarfjöll Campsite: 64.683328, -19.300919
Geothermal Area Parking: 64.646379, -19.278216
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Kerlingarfjöll Campsite
Kerlingarfjöll, Iceland
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Geothermal Area Parking
Kerlingarfjöll, Iceland
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