Montana, Wyoming and Colorado Day 5 of Our Road Trip

We got an early start today. We headed out at 7am. We said good bye to Montana at 10:04 as we crossed the border of Wyoming.

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Day 5 in Iceland

This was going to be our last road trip of our vacation.  I decided we needed to go to another geothermal bath.  I knew I had read about one so I located it and marked our route on the map.  This time I didn’t have to find back roads because that is what you had to take to get there.  I packed us a lunch and had in may mind this nice private place to enjoy our last soak.

we took about a two hour drive down gravel roads some of which are called F roads, which weren’t as bad as some we have driven down in Alaska, not sure what the F stands for.  You can imagine though we did have fun with it.  We were saying things like I will drive down any F-ing road I want.  We finally reached Fjallabak Nature Reserve where the hot bath is supposed to be that we are going to.  Off we go to drive down another F-ing road.

Fjallabak Nature Reserve was established in 1979. The Nature reserve is 47.000 hectares and is over 500 meters above sea level. The land is mountainous, sculptured by volcanoes and geothermal activity, covered by lavas, sands, rivers and lakes.

https://www.nat.is/travelguideeng/fjallabak_nature_reserve.htm

 

 

I have to say that on our road trip so far we had only a couple of cars that passed us.  Then we hit the top of a hill and around the corner there were several other cars stopped to take photos.  We did the same and while we were there even more cars came and stopped.  I am starting to thing these people had the same idea I had about getting away from the people and having a nice soak.

 

We made it too Landmannalaugar in the Highland.  I was in for a big surprise when we got there.  The place was packed.  There were cars and buses all over the place.  I was thinking it was a whole river that you could use but it was just a small spot where the hot water mixes with the cold.

Landmannalaugar (the people’s pools) is a geothermal paradise, replete with rainbow-colored rhyolite mountains and bubbling hot springs, where wispy plumes of steam rise off the volcanically heated waters. It has been a resting place for travelers for many centuries and Icelandic people have traditionally used it as a stop off point when they cross the highlands, which is where its name originates from.

https://www.extremeiceland.is/en/destinations/landmannalaugar

This makes it sound so romantic.  I wouldn’t call it that because to get the warm water you have to be in the area where the river runs into the small pond. This is the point that everyone gathers.  It was a beautiful setting though.

When we got there the first thing I had to do was hit the toilet.  It was becoming urgent.  We got to the bathroom and we saw a sign that you have to get a day pass to use it.  After paying our 500 Krona or $4.68 and getting our wrist bands I could have some relief.  We enjoyed our picnic lunch outside at a picnic table, a first for us because we had been eating on the road.  You could eat inside a clear plastic, covered area.  We then noticed that if you wanted to shower after your soak you had to get a ticket to scan which was another 500 Krona.  We decided we were going to go for that too, so our free soak cost us a total of 1000 Krona or $9.36.  We changed and headed for the bath down the wooden walkway.

At the end of the walkway was a platform where you can leave your things while in the pool. Some of the people were changing out there, so if you want to save the 1000Krona you can do without the toilet and shower.  We climbed down the few stairs to the water which was very clear, cold and had a gravel bottom. If you have tender feet like David you may want to wear water shoes.  The water was about thigh deep.  it is just a short walk to the where the warm water flows into the cold pool.   We sat amongst the people who were from many different countries.  We enjoyed listening to the many languages.  As people leave you move closer to where the hot water pours into the cold.  You can feel when the heat comes up from the ground because the stream will get hotter.  I have to admit that the scenery is beautiful.  This is not one of our favorite hot baths but it was unique and well worth going to.

Landmannalaugar (the people’s pools) is a geothermal paradise, replete with rainbow-colored rhyolite mountains and bubbling hot springs, where wispy plumes of steam rise off the volcanically heated waters. It has been a resting place for travelers for many centuries and Icelandic people have traditionally used it as a stop off point when they cross the highlands, which is where its name originates from.nt countries.  It was fun listening to all the different languages. As people leave you move closer to the hot stream.  We enjoyed it but we would not call it the best one we had ever been too.  It was the cheapest though.

 

There were  some beautiful flowers and some cute little birds in the creeks.

After our shower we headed home a different way.  The way we came home was quicker but I could see why they recommend a 4X4.  There were a couple of water crossings but nothing bad.  I do imagine that in the spring it can get really bad.  I now see why there are so many trucks with the big tires on them now.  They must spend time in the highlands.

 

It started raining on us again on the way home.  We got up in the clouds as we climbed over the mountains back to civilization.  We stopped in Selfoss to get to get some supper and headed back to the apartment to call it a night.

 

Flat Ole Hippies Day 3 in Iceland

We took off with our friends today and they said we were really going to have a great time.  I guess they knew where they were going this time.

We did have a great day! We saw some great rivers and waterfalls, played in the snow, went down a long gravel road, checked out some tomatoes and stopped at a brewery for a couple.

Can’t wait to see what adventure they come up with tomorrow.

Day 3 Brewery, Geitland Nature Reserve and Pringvellir

Another rainy day but that won’t stop us.  We are off on another road trip.  First stop is to find the brewery, but first we had to take pictures of this cool car, an Opel.  It has been parked on the road that we park on and thought some of our friends, Fred and Dan, might like to see it.

 

We went through the tunnel once again.  We stopped at this beautiful river by Fossatun. Fossatún is a settlement located on the banks of the river Grímsá in Borgarfjörður along route 50, just 90 km from Reykjavík. The area is known for its beautiful surroundings and there are many marked hiking paths to enjoy the sites.  There is supposed to be a beautiful waterfall a short hike but the bugs were terrible, so we didn’t go. You can’t miss the place because of the huge troll face along side the entrance.

 

As we were standing on the bridge taking photos of the river a tractor came by pulling a trailer full of sheep.  I hope they were moving them to another field but I think they may have been going to the slaughter house.  I think they knew what was going on because of all the baaing.

 

We found the brewery but it didn’t open for another hour so we found a small road that looped around. We decided to take that and found Deildartunguhver Hot Springs.  This was well worth the side trip.

Situated on a beautiful farm, Deildartunguhver is the largest and most powerful hot spring in Europe with a flow rate of 180 litres (50 gallons) of water per second at a piping hot 97°C (200°F). The scalding water bubbles out of an algae covered rocky outcrop creating a steamy source of power.

Most of the water heating homes and businesses in the towns of Borgarnes and Akranes comes from Deildartunguhver. It travels through a 64 kilometre (40 mi) pipeline, the longest of its kind in Iceland. So, if you take a shower anywhere within a 65 km radius of Deildartunguhver, you have already bathed in the hot water from this powerful spring!

They have a hot tub and huge greenhouse.  It cost about $40 to go to the very fancy hot pool.  They sell tomatoes for 300 Krona or $2.84 that were grown in their greenhouse.

 

Now it was time to head back to the brewery.  On the way we crossed this very narrow bridge.  It was really cool to drive across.

 

We made it back to Stedji Brewery which is not hard to find due to the big beer bottle at the entrance.  We went in the tap-room  and there was only one other couple in there.  They were from Kentucky and they had rented a camper to travel around in for 2 weeks.  They were coming to an end of their trip.  Then another couple came in from Dallas, Texas of all places.  They were leaving when we were on July 4th.  They both got good deals with WOW airlines, so it might be worth checking into.

Anyway back to the brewery.  The are located on a farm named Stedji, Anvil, this is where the name came from for the brewery.  We had a flight of 5 beers which were all very nice.  Then one of the owners came out and said you have to try this one.  We brew it with whale testicles which are smoked in sheep dung.  David and I, of course, said bring it on.  We loved it.  He brought out another one which was not smoked, though good we preferred the first one.  Don’t worry we are bringing back a couple of bottles of the first one to share with the Midnight Sun Beer Tasting Society.  I think my 50 pounds of beer is growing.

 

Here are a couple more tractors for Fred and Dan to check out.  Fred maybe you can get Sam to pull the one.  The other one looks like you should race it.

 

 

We decided to take some back roads on the way back to Reydjavik, so we headed to Geitland Nature Reserve.  I am not sure why they call it a nature reserve because it is really barren, but the glacier is there.  We did take a wrong turn but it did look like the main road. I found out where the huge buses go now, to the glacier.  We drove to where they start but couldn’t go any farther.  If you look close at the one photo that just looks like snow go uphill you will see one of the buses stopped.  David went in the shop to check where we were.  He pointed on the map to the road we were on the guy says, “Your not lost, you know exactly where you are.”

I decided to let the Flat Ole Hippies go play in the snow.  I figure it is all rocks so it will be easy going.  Then I stepped off a larger rock on the gravel and my toes went into the mud.  No big deal I will wash them off in the small puddle over there.  Then the whole top of my foot was covered in mud.  I decide that was not a good idea and just kept my foot muddy.

 

Our next stop was Pringvellir, where we walked up to Öxarárfoss waterfall along the fault lines.  The waterfall was stunning.  You could see this wonderful green color in part of it.

I did get my feed washed at the waterfall because I found a place I could get in.  I wanted David to join me for a footy picture but he said no, so we found another place.  Of course, his idea did make for a better photo.

https://guidetoiceland.is/connect-with-locals/jorunnsg/ingvellir-national-park

 

Now it was time to head back home.  We could see it looked like it was trying to break up over Reykjavik.

Next stop was downtown to find some food.  Driving in circles trying to find a place to park we realized it is Saturday night.  We drove past this huge screen outside where people were watching the World Cup.  We actually drove past it several times as we were making our circle.  I guess it wasn’t actually a circle because we kept hitting one ways that were going the wrong way.  We finally found a spot by the harbor.

Not far from where we parked we could see a place that looked more our style than the fancy ones around.  It was call Reykjavik Fish Restaurant.  The fish was great.

 

With our bellies full we headed back to the apartment and to bed thinking about our next adventure.