Sacred Earth Travel - Sustainable Nature and Adventure Travel

ICELAND QUICKLINKS



TFN_TrekHell (2K)

Exploring Mt. Hekla territory, Icelands most renown volcano

A 6 day trek from hut to hut with 4x4 support and English speaking guide. Daily hikes are 6 - 8 hours, though the walking itself is non-technical and does not demand any special skill. Good fitness level and stamina are a prerequisite to this kind of trip.

Maximum number of participants: 12
Minimum number of participants: 6-7

heklamap (117K)In ancient times volcanoes were thought to be the gates of Hell. Stromboli, in southern Italy and Mt. Hekla in Iceland were particularly feared. Mt Hekla is a very young and highly spirited volcano at only 5000 - 7000 years of age. The average 'life-expectancy' of such volcanoes is thought to be approximately 100000 years, so we can expect a lot more spectacular activity for some centuries to come.

Mt. Hekla is about 3 miles long and 5000ft high forming a perfect cone. Yet, no-one dared to venture up to its summit until 1750, when to explorers finally took up the challenge to see for themselves whether the crater really offered an access point to hell. They did not find anything of the sort and since then climbing this active volcano has become a popular pursuit among all sorts of modern day adventurers.

This trek goes around the entire base of the volcano at a safe distance. Via radio we will be able to stay informed with regards to the volcano's activity and weather conditions, which will determine whether we can attempt to climb the summit.

This trek is supported by a 4x4 vehicle which will transport all our gear from one hut to the next and provide emergency support if needed. Participants only have to carry a day pack.

itinerary (1K)

Day 1: Reykjavik - Hella - Rangá River

Farm near HeklaEarly morning rendezvous with your guide at your accommodation. Hiking clothes and daypack ready for trekking (A bag with clean clothes for the end of your trip can be stored in your Reykjavik accommodation or in our store in the village of Hella). The trip begins. Approx. 2 hours road transfer to the trailhead. The majestic Hekla volcano rises above a grassy plain and marks the entrance to the high volcanic lands. Probably It is Iceland’s most famous (or infamous!) and active volcano. Hike starts by late morning n the direction of the farms cowering under Hekla's south face. These farms have had to move many times over the centuries as eruptions have engulfed them. However, much of the countryside is now verdant with some former lava flows covered in green moss and arctic birch. Green moss, « bonsai » arctic birch grove along with the pure water springs, creates the feeling, perhaps, of a real Japanese garden. In August on this day, we can take a little longer as the berry and mushroom picking gets in the way of our passage..
Drive: 130km/ 2 hours
Elevation: +/- 100m
Walking: 4 - 5 hours
Overnight: Hut
Meals: L, D

Day 2: West side of Mt. Hekla

We cross the river Western Rangá, then we hike the last series of hills made from palagonite rock (sub-glacially formed) that protects the last fragments of burned countryside. On the far side, we arrive onto a moon-like surface at the foot of Mount Hekla and cross a stretch of perfectly flat volcanic slag. The black surroundings, so dark they resemble the blue colour of a crow’s feathers.
Elevation: -300m
Walking: 7 hours
Overnight:Hut
Meals: B, L, D

fjallabaksleid, Iceland

Day 3: Valagjá´ – Pass of the lambs

We walk away from 'the Gateway to Hell' (as Hekla was known in the middle ages) and the landscape begins to soften; the green colours of the mosses slowly covering lava fields and the pumices that rain on the land with each eruption. Crossing the 'pass of the lambs' we walk in the direction of the majestic monolithic crown of Mount Loðmundur, surrounded by marshland and rich pasture, reflecting in the beautiful lake Loðmundarvatn reflecting Mount Loðmundur a flat-topped volcanic monolith that erupted through glacial ice during the Ice Age.
Elevation: -300m
Walking: 6 hours
Overnight:Hut
Meals: B, L, D

Day 4: Landmannalaugar

Hike to Landmannalaugar. The area consists of more geological elements than you can count, but most obvious are the famous rhyolite mountains coming in all shades and colours. This place is quite famous and the access is now fairly easy by 4wd vehicle. It is the only place where we will meet other people in any numbers during the course of our journey. (This trek is 5 days, from Wednesday morning to Sunday afternoon, but may be shortened by returning to Reykjavik on Saturday evening and will then cost 150 € less. Notify us when you register your wish to interrupt the trek on Saturday)
Elevation: - 400m
Walking: 5-6 hours
Overnight: Hut
Meals: B, L, D

Day 5: Landmannahellir to Reykjavik

Free morning for resting and wandering in a beautiful surrounding of Landmannahellir. Before departure by jeep or bus to civilization in early afternoon. Arrive at your Reykjavik accommodation in the late afternoon
Driving Distance: 230km/ 3 hours
Elevation: -200m
Walking: 2-3 hours
Meals: B, L

Note: The itinerary may be reversed or modified, especially in the middle of July or in September. The actual hours spent hiking is only a rough indication and will depend on weather conditions and average fitness level of the group.

Departures in 2015

TDH 624: Jun 24 - 28
TDH 701: Jul 01 - 05 Full
TDH 708: Jul 08 - 12  
TDH 715: Jul 15 - 19  
TDH 722: Jul 22 - 26  
TDH 729: Jul 29 - Aug 02  
TDH 805: Aug 05 - 09  
TDH 812: Aug 12 - 16 Full
TDH 819: Aug 19 - 23
TDH 902: Sep 02 - 06
TDH 909: Sep 09 - 13
TDH 916: Sep 16 - 20

Price upon request

Start and finish in Reykjavik (accommodation and transfer from/to airport is not included in the package rate, but can be arranged on request).

Included:

  • English speaking guide,
  • Bus transfer to and from the mountains,
  • Luggage transportation from hut to hut by 4x4 support vehicle,
  • Accommodation at mountain hut or camp,
  • All meals from lunch on day 1 to lunch on day 6,

Not Included:

  • International flights
  • Transfer from/to airport in Reykjavik,
  • Accommodations in Reykjavik,
  • Entrance fees for museums, swimming pools and optional excursions,
  • Drinks and other personal expenses,
  • Personal travel insurance

Accommodation during the trip: Sleeping bag accommodation in mountain huts (usually one, comfortable, mixed bunkhouse) and depending on route and conditions, at the peak of the season 1 or 2 nights may be spent in spacious double tents equipped with comfortable mattress. Showers are available in most of the huts.

Trip preparation and notes: Walking level - Moderate. 6-day assisted trek, carrying a light daypack. This should present no serious difficulty for persons with at least some mountain walking experience, plus a good level of personal fitness. An experienced Icelandic guide assisted by a driver leads the trek. The group is expected to assist with all aspects of making and breaking camp, including meal preparation. Once in the mountains, each group becomes an independent entity. The camaraderie, teamwork and friendships forged, add much to the richness of each person's experience. This trek passes through some areas of complete wilderness. Most of the trekking is off-track, with underfoot conditions constantly changing. Therefore, sturdy, well worn-in hiking boots are a must. Most days involve river crossings, so it is essential that all trekkers carry suitable footwear to change into. See our kit list for more information. We trek for 6-7 hours per day, on average, but this may be longer, dependant on weather conditions and group speed. Maximum altitude no more than 1300m. Elevation change for most days should be no more than 600m, rising to 1000m if ascent Mount Hekla.

Predeparture Notes and Kit List

Important: Iceland is an extremely geoactive island. Earthquakes and volcanic activity can occur at any time, which may impact your travel plans. We can not take responsibility for the way in which the forces of nature interfere with travel plans. It is therefore of utmost importance that you purchase adequate travel insurance and trip cancellation insurance. It is important to make sure your travel insurance covers 'adventurous activities'.

For further information and booking inquiries please send us and e-mail.