Saturday, June 4, 2011

Iceland - Waterfall Edition

Waterfalls were everywhere in Iceland!  We joked that most of the tiny waterfalls we saw by the side of the road every km or two would be major tourist attractions in Saskatchewan, but there they were basically NBD (no big deal if you aren't hip and happening enough to catch that).  Here are a few of the waterfall highlights:

This one was in Þingvellir National Park and our first waterfall of the trip!  It was also our introduction to Icelandic safety measures - there basically are none.  Shortly after I took this picture some kids climbed up on those rocks in front of the waterfall.  Awesome!

Goðafoss - waterfall of the gods. The story goes that in around the year 1000 when Iceland was officially converted to Christianity, statues of the Norse gods were thrown into this waterfall.

Icelandic safety measures were also in effect here - you could walk right to the edge of the cliff and look down the waterfall.

We really did get this close!  My camera barely zooms at all.

Next, we hiked to find Dettifoss, the most powerful waterfall in Europe.  We couldn't find the trail (it was buried in snow) so we just followed footprints and waterfall noise and found this one.  However this was just the baby waterfall that feeds Dettifoss (but it was actually a pretty huge waterfall itself).

Ah, there are the trail markers.

We didn't get any good pictures of the whole of Dettifoss - there was a lot of snow and going down to the next level of cliff seemed a little dangerous.  This is what it would look like though from the other side (from Wikipedia):

See that person standing beside it?  We still got the effect of how huge it was from being there, even though the pictures don't really show it.

Icelandic safety measures alive and well at Dettifoss (note the rock fence to prevent you from going over the edge).

Waterfalls like this one were a pretty common sight out the car window!

The bottom of Svartifoss, "The Black Falls."  We thought this was it but then hiked another km to get there:

Amazing basalt formations!  The sign in the background says "This fence is here to protect the vegetation.  If you want to get closer to the waterfall, step on the river rocks."

Worth hiking uphill for 2 km... I GUESS.

A small waterfall we found after hiking to the end of a ridiculously steep canyon!  I was sort of terrified when Brahm did this:


Skogafoss.  I bought a painting of this one.  We did not hike to the top because we were sort of getting sick of uphill hiking that day.

Skogafoss up close and personal.

Saving the best for last?  Seljalandsfoss, the waterfall you can go behind!

All suited up and ready to go behind the waterfall!  Seriously so dangerous, it was so slippery!

The backside of water!

Completely soaked after doing the loop behind the waterfall!  But it was our last stop of the day and totally worth it!  Like going on Splash Mountain but in nature.

Oh I guess Seljalandsfoss wasn't our last one - sadly, Gulfoss was somewhat easy to forget even though it was a gorgeous two-tiered waterfall (and the most popular tourist waterfall in Iceland) because of how horribly windy it was that day!  It was uncomfortable to be anywhere!

Me leaning back into the wind and not falling over.

The new Canon Rebel T3 around my neck was totally worth it - so happy with how my pictures turned out!

We saw many, many more waterfalls but these were some of the most memorable!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Robyn,

    My wife and I and another couple are headed to Iceland and doing the Iceland Express self-drive through Nordic Visitor. Thank you for blogging on your experience there and congrats on your engagement.

    My wife and I are originally from Brantford, Ontario but we moved to the US last September. I've always wanted to see Iceland and we are thrilled to be going. I hope we have as good an experience as you and Brahm did.

    Take care,