06-Sep-2001 -- Here goes our story:
During our summer 2001 Iceland bike trip we were eager to see the highlands
of this beautiful country. We rented a 4x4
offroad car during our stay in Reykjahlid, also having in mind to visit
the 65°N 18°W confluence, which is situated in the interior of
Iceland along the Sprengisandur route. We started our confluence trip in
the morning of September 6, 2001 with a quick jump into Viti
- the warm sulphuric volcano crater-lake at Askja. The surroundings were
looking very unreal with the black lava desert covered by a slim snow layer.
With icy toes and fingers we headed back to our car and needed quite some
time to warm up. Excellent recommendations to anyone heading for that experience
- it was a bit crazy but great!
Originally we had planned to drive route F910 from Askja westwards to
get this confluence but locals smashed our enthusiasm when we listened
to their scary stories about naive tourists getting stuck on this very
bad track along the big Vatnajökull glacier. People use to drive such
roads in a car convoy (there are many rivers to cross and snow- and sandstorms
can happen any time ...). The probability to be rescued at this time of
the year on the F910 track is low, since no car is expected to drive there
during the winter. So we decided to take the better known F26 Sprenisandur
route. This one starts at the very nice Godafoss (God's waterfall) and
crosses the highlands along the Skjalfandfljot - river, which has an impressive
canyon with a very beautiful waterfall "Aldejarfoss"). Driving through
endless stone and sand deserts the road was getting close the confluence
point at sunset. When the direction to the site was perpendicular to the
road we switched to 4x4 and continued our rallye offroad "öber Stock
o Stei im volle Garacho" westwards until we got to the point at around
1.5km distance from the road. We celebrated
the confluence just when snowfall was starting. We felt a bit like the
first people landing on the moon.
Lava stones are projecting out of a surface consisting of very fine gravel
and sand and there's no vegetation growing anywhere. The place represents
a typical highland sand desert found in that area of Iceland and is situated
around 1000m above sea level. The surroundings are hilly, but no big mountains
were visible, probably also because of the heavy clouds and fog that came
up at the time we were making this confluence. We managed to get to the
and took a panoramic picture of the surroundings.
It was getting dark
with snowfall starting when we drove to the mountaineering hut at Nydalur
- first crossing two rivers in the beginning snowstorm. We were happy to
stay in the weather-save hut for the night and to prepare our pasta inside.
The hut was used by funny
Icelandic guys who were enjoying their weekend smoking, telling crazy
stories and drinking a lot. Their freetime activity was to cross the interior
with their huge jeeps, driving only offroad. Although offered, we were
not up to taste their main dinner plate: a smoked sheep-face. They told
us all sorts of Icelandic sagas and we enjoyed the evening very much. Scowl!