Arrival from Reykjavík to Egilsstaðir airport morning flight. One hour drive together to Borgarfjörður to our locally owned Álfheimar Country Hotel where we will stay next 5 nights.
Hike Borgarfjörður valley
Info: Rather easy day, walking about 12 km and traversing 400 m of elevation.
We start the day with 3 hours hike in the village, Old turf house, concert hall, local fish factory, from rock to art, and many interesting stops are on our way. After a light lunch, we hike on unmarked trails in the valley of Borgarfjörður. From the village, we take sheep trails up to Dimmidalur (the Dark Valley) and Jökuldalur (Glacier Valley) to see their rugged, beautiful landscape, right under the Door Mountains. Not only do we walk on our way through the elf community of Lobbuhraun, but come to their home in Dimmidalur valley. When we return to Bakkagerði village, we walk through it, noticing its many interesting aspects and of course also visiting the queen of the elves at Álfaborg (Elf Hill).
Info: walking about 16 km and traversing 700 m of elevation.
We start the day after transport to the environmentally friendly harbor of Borgarfjörður, Hafnarhólmi, to visit the puffins and other birds nesting there. Next, we hike up from the coast through vegetated mountain screes to Brúnavík pass, at 345 m, and down to Brúnavík inlet. There we visit another beach of black sand, with lots of beautiful stones lying on it, and listen to the waves. After taking our shoes off to ford the small stream, we enjoy a relaxing barefooted walk to the other end of the beach. On our way back we hike over Hofstrandarskarð pass, 321 m high, and walk beside Helgárgil colorful canyon towards Bakkagerði village.
East Iceland’s best-kept secret… Stórurð (Boulder Hollow)
Info: A somewhat difficult hike because of gravelly areas and screes on about 15% on the way. Around 16 km. Traverses 500 m of elevation.
From Vatnskarð pass (431 m), we start the day’s hike by going up and crossing the mountain Geldingafjall (640 m), then continuing inland west of Súlur peaks. There are excellent views over Njarðvík, Fljótsdalshérað valley, the black sandy beach of Héraðsflói bay and perhaps even to Vatnajökull glacier and Mt. Snæfell in the eastern part of the central highlands. We then go down into Stórurð, an expanse of enormous rocks intersected by a small river. Calm turquoise-colored basins of icy water lie hidden among the huge boulders, often with flat banks of short, tender, green grass. Returning from this mysterious place, we can opt either for the hike along the Dyrfjöll (Door Mountains) or the easy way down the valley below Rjúpnafell peak.
Beauties of Breiðavík
Info: An easy hike of about 15 km. Traverses 400 m of elevation.
Transport to Afrétt and then an easy hike over moors and gravelly ground, including the light brown rhyolite around Urðarhólavatn, and farther on to Gæsavötn and Víknaheiði, before reaching Breiðavík inlet. The rhyolite mountains along the way display an incredible range of pastel colors. After a nice lunch stop, we hike up to Gagnheiði ridge (479 m), which has a viewpoint indicator and fabulous panorama. Then it is back to Bakkagerði after an eventful day with wide views over many of the area’s amazing mountains.
Stapavík to Njarðvík
Info: Hike around 11 km, traverses 415 m.
We 15 minutes drive from Borgarfjörður and stop at Unaós farm. We hike along Selfljót river to the seashore and to the Stapavík cove, a former unloading place for ships. From Stapavík we take a rather easy hike along Gönguskörð pass largely along an old riding trail. This was the main route between Borgarfjörður and Fljótsdalshérað valley for 1000 years until the road over Vatnskarð pass was finished in 1955. Pick up at Njarðavík farm and drive to Borgarfjörður.