[Note: At this point we're about halfway through my trip.]
Much of the previous day was spent surround by darkness either on the black beaches of Vik or on the pitch black drive to Skaftafell. When I arrived at my hotel, I was too late for their dinner service and left with a choice. Eat at the gas station across the street or go hungry. Turns out their mushroom soup was delicious.
After a long day I was ready collapse. I headed to my room to find...it was still dirty from the person before me. Gross. Got a new room, this time it was thankfully clean. I proceed to commence with my nightly activities. Charge this, charge that, have cheap Amazon adapters fail, tried to blog, discovered there was no wifi to my room, etc. Smaller than a shoebox, I didn't like this room, not one bit.
Why am I telling you this? I woke up grumpy, still tired and frustrated from the night before. I wanted to leave this cold, dark, grating place. That is until I rolled over and peaked out the window. It hit me all over again. I loved it here.
I made plans with Eiran from LocalGuide.is for a glacier walk. Eiran told me the name of the glacier, but the Icelandic name only sounded like "f*** you". SO I never tried saying it. Both of my guide pals would tell you my Icelandic needs work.
Let's take a walk.
Everyday the glacier loses one meter of depth.
Eiran taught me how to walk with the crampons. He put it like this, "you're American, just walk like John Wayne. " Haha, yes something like that. We went to check out this ice cave, but it was both very dirty and not safe. The caves don't harden until Oct/Nov. Until they are very unsafe. So we moved on.
We spent about four hours on the glacier before making our way down. If you ever have an opportunity to walk on a glacier, take it! It's incredible. And if you're in Iceland, I recommend giving Eiran a call. He's a great guide, and extremely personable guy, and knows what a photographer wants and needs. I can't wait to check out some ice caves the next time I go. Localguide.is
I still had the rest of the day ahead of me, so I continued my trek toward Jökulsárlón.
Driving in Iceland is both exhilarating and relentless.
Like Luke scanning Tatooine's horizon for a lost R2 unit, I used my Fuji in a similar way. Only I found a glacier lagoon.
Seeing this glacier in its shattered fragments on the beach, it hit me. This is where glaciers go to die.
About this time, I heard the first glacier breaking. I'm not sure if it was breaking off from the mothership or settling in the lagoon but the thunderous sounds of glaciers snapping and breaking apart won't leave my memory.
It got crazier. The weather teased me in hopes of a sunset over the lagoon, instead this rich blue haze fell over the main chunk of glacier. Totally weird, totally awesome. I've never seen anything like it.