Landmannalaugar – Thórsmörk Hike (Day 4)

From Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley

In terms of views, this was not the best day. The landscape continued to be bare but overall more boring than on the previous day.

We left the Botnar camp well after 9AM, when most of the groups and travelers left already.

Showers and bathrooms at Botnar hut
Showers and bathrooms at Botnar hut

Botnar hut
Botnar hut
First part of the hike had some hills and valleys
First part of the hike had some hills and valleys

The first part of the hike that day was kind of interesting and even a little challenging. For example, we had to go down a slippery slope supporting ourselves with a rope.

On a slippery slope
On a slippery slope

But for the most of the day the hiking trail was pretty easy.

A little marsh along the road
A little marsh along the road
This road can be considered an easy walking path, not a hike
This road can be considered an easy walking path, not a hike

As usual, our guide entertained us with stories of people who died along this trek. Most of the stories were about people doing stupid things and ending up dead because of that. Here is the story he told us at this dramatic canyon.

A canyon where some people died
A canyon where this sad story took place

The canyon is deep with a very fast river and a pretty big and scary waterfall. A group of travelers from Russia came to this place to cross the river on jeeps. Among them was a young couple that just got engaged. They had 2 jeeps that they roped together and started crossing the river. The river turned out to be mightier than the couple’s jeep and started to carry it forward, the rope broke, their jeep started to roll and carried them down the waterfall. They died. The people in the other jeep survived because they did not get a chance to start crossing the river. Oh those Russians.

The guide tells a sad story about love and stupidity
The guide tells a sad story about love and stupidity (which typically go hand in hand)

Overall, a sad story, but we had to continue our journey, which thankfully did not entail crazy river crossings.

Done with the story, time to resume hiking
Done with the story, time to resume hiking

However, we were not done with the canyons and rivers that day. Here are just some of the highlights.

Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike From Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley

Gradually, the volcanic desert started to acquire more and more colors. At the beginning, there were just patches of green moss or some resilient grass, but the further we went the more we saw various types of vegetation.

Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley
Hike from Emstrur to Thórsmörk Valley

At some point we noticed that small bushes or trees started popping up here and there along the trek. We figured that Thórsmörk must be near.

We are getting close to Thórsmörk
We are getting close to Thórsmörk

And we were right: Thórsmörk was near. We entered a small forest and in no time got to our hut.

Thórsmörk
Thórsmörk

We spent a lovely evening in Thórsmörk. Our group had a whole room reserved for us. I helped our guide cook a mushroom soup, our Irish companions grilled salmon, everyone felt a satisfaction of completing the trek without a major accident but with a lot of excitement. And we all discussed how we were going to complete yet another day of hiking — up to craters Magni & Modi.

Thórsmörk
Thórsmörk
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Finnich Glen

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This is one of those types of places that serious tourists must visit on their road trip, since it is astonishingly beautiful and discouragingly hard to find. There are, however, several online bloggers... READ MORE