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
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.
Early in the morning your guide will meet you at your accommodations in Reykjavik. Have your daypack and hiking clothes ready for the trip. (You can store some clean clothes at your hotel for the end of your trip, if you wish). We start driving along the southern ringroad towards Hekla volcano, which we will reach after about 2 hours. Here our trek begins by late morning. The majestic Hekla volcano rises above a grassy plain and marks the entrance to the high volcanic lands. It is probably Iceland's most famous (or infamous!) and active volcano. Beginning on foot by late morning crossing grassland along the bank of river Eastern Rangá.
Drive: 130km/ 2 hours
Elevation: +/- 100m
Walking: 3 - 4 hours
Meals: L, D
In 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.
Elevation: +/- 150m
Walking: 6 hours
Overnight: Hut or camp
Meals: B, L, D
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.
Walking: 5 - 6 hours
Meals: B, L, D
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
Meals: B, L, D
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. Until early August If weather and time permit your guide may propose the easy ascension of Mount Loðmundur after dinner, a flat-topped volcanic table mountain that erupted through glacial ice during the Ice Age. From the top of this monolith in good weather conditions nearly all central Iceland stretches before our eyes.
Walking: 6 hours
Melas: B, L, D
Hike on Domadalur 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. From Landmannalaugar we drive to Reykjavik where we arrive in late afternoon or early evening.
Driving Distance: 230km/ 4-4 hours Elevation: +300m
Walking: 5 - 6 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.
|Departure||Dates||Season's Special Attraction|
|TFN 617:||June 17 - 22|
|TFN 624:||July 24 - 29|
|TFN 701:||July 01 - 06|
|TFN 708:||July 08 - 13|
|TFN 715:||July 15 - 20|
|TFN 722:||July 22 - 27|
|TFN 729:||July 29 - Aug 03|
|TFN 805:||Aug 05 - 10|
|TFN 812:||Aug 12 - 17|
|TFN 819:||Aug 19 - 24|
|TFN 826:||Aug 26 - 31|
|TFN 902:||Sep 02 - 07|
|TFN 909:||Sep 09 - 14|
|TFN 916:||Sep 16 - 21|
- Berries and Mushrooms
- Clear Nights
- Autumn Colours
- Northern Lights
- First Snow on the Mountaintops
Start and finish in Reykjavik (accommodation and transfer from/to airport is not included in the package rate, but can be arranged on request).
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.
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.