Blue Lagoon Limited
The snow-covered Blue Lagoon
Everywhere you looked the landscape was white, even the
lake – which was frozen over – with a backdrop of mountains.
Because of the volcanic eruptions, there is a moonscape feel to
the place with several pseudo-craters, and fields of lava. In the
summer, apparently, this is one of the places to come to see
wildlife, with 15 species of duck.
We managed to see a few on the water where it wasn’t
frozen over. At this time of the year the animals, except the
horses, which are apparently great to go trekking on, are kept
warm, under cover.
Although there are roads, during the winter you are
allowed to drive cross country. Our visit to reputedly the
country’s most impressive waterfall, Dettifoss, which is
150ft high, was taken in this way.
There is a marker indication to point you in the right
direction, but unless you have navigation in your car, I am
sure it would be impossible to find. The Icelandic people are
very superstitious, and have many legends about the trolls.
On the way, we passed 13 lava statues, and were told that
these were trolls. Apparently, they only live at night, but
these had partied into the dawn, and had therefore been
turned into stone.
There are lots of activities that can be organised. Several
of our party went hiking and visited Víti, meaning hell, the
volcanic crater near our hotel. I tried cross-country ski-ing,
my first-time ever, which resulted in several falls as the ground
was icy. However, as the hotel rents you all the equipment,
it afforded me the opportunity of trying the sport.
For proficient skiers, the area has not yet developed downhill
ski-ing, although apparently there are slopes near
Reykjavik and Akureyri. They have, however, recently
opened their own geothermal baths. Different to the Blue
Lagoon, the water doesn’t have salt in it, but rather has properties
that leave your body lovely and silky.
For me, the highlight of the trip was a snow scooter ride
in the Krafla volcanic area, north of Lake Myvatn. We started
our ride at the tiny airfield where, during the summer, you
can take sightseeing flights in a light aircraft. I must admit that
when I first saw the large scooter, I was too apprehensive to
try it. Pétur, the owner of the hotel, who was also our lead
scooter and guide on the trip, fortunately persuaded me to
have a go.
My only regret was not having a camera with me as the
areas we drove through were just breathtaking, and although
wearing a helmet, still the exhilaration of the wind on your
face was just wonderful. We – there were a group of us – also
had an experienced rider bringing up the rear.
When we came to a particularly steep hill, he very kindly
took me up on the back of his scooter, and then brought mine
up for me so that I could continue on my own. For most of
the time, you appear to be riding totally alone, with miles
of snow-covered countryside around you and not a soul in
sight, the others either being in front, around a corner or
out of sight behind you.
Web site created by Mark Griffin