Journey to the Langjokull Glacier
On our way to take the Into the Glacier tour of Langjokull, we stopped by another famous waterfall and a couple of spots with beautiful scenery.
This waterfall is made up of a series of springs coming out of the Hallmundarhaun, about 900 metres away.
Hallmundarhaun is a lava field resulting from an eruption of one of the volcanoes under the Langjokull glacier.
The waterfall falls into the Hvita river from ledges of less porous rock in the lava.
Not far from Hraunfossar is also another beautiful waterfall called the Barnafoss. Continuing our journey to the glacier, we stopped twice to take advantage of the beautiful scenery surrounding the area.
Breath taking scenery of the Icelandic mountains facing the cold northern Atlantic Ocean:
A house by Skorradalur Lake
The Langjokull Glacier:
After Vatnajokull, Langjokull glacier is the second largest glacier in Iceland and is located about 153km northeast of Reykjavik. The journey to the glacier was beautiful, as we passed several mountains and lakes, and the north Atlantic Ocean.
We joined the Into the Glacier tour, which I highly recommend. Since it was winter time, they had to make sure that we were warmly dressed.
The entire tour lasted about 3 hours (depending on the weather), where 2 hours was spent going and returning from the glacier.
The scenery was magnificent. We spent about one hour touring inside the glacier.
The volume of the Langjokull glacier is 195km3, and the ice is up to 580 metres thick. It is about 50 km long and 15-20 km wide, and the highest point of the ice cap is about 1,450 metres.
The area of the glacier includes some mountains, including: Jarlhettur, Skroufell (above the Hvitarvatn river), Fjakkkirkja, Pursaborg, and Peturhorn.
The Into the Glacier project took over four years to prepare, and fourteen months to excavate 5,500m3 of ice. The entire glacier measures 200 million m3, and the tunnel only makes up about 0.00275% of the entire glacier.
The tunnel is about 500 meters long, and where we were standing was about 25 meters below the surface of the glacier, with 200 meters of solid ice beneath us.
You encounter quite a few crevasses, which is a deep crack, or fracture, resulting from the movement and stress of the glacier.
The crevasse above is about 40 metres deep and a few hundred meters long. It is absolutely stunning!
I find this tour very interesting and worthwhile. However, I was quite sad to learn that Langjokull is shrinking quite fast, and researchers believe that if climate change continues at its current pace, the glacier will disappear in 150 years.
As I mentioned in the beginning, I think Iceland is one of the most beautiful countries in the world, with many of its untouched natural beauty. I do recommend that you visit this country as soon as possible, especially those who are interested in catching a glimpse of the northern lights. More and more tourists are flocking into this beautiful Nordic country. For example: the number of tourists coming in has almost tripled in the past two years.
I highly recommend that you carefully plan your itinerary as the size of the country is quite large, and many of the attractions are located outside Reykjavik. And finally: choose your travel guide or tour wisely. We did, and we had a fantastic time. But we were also very lucky to be able to see the northern lights. Three evenings in a row!
A special thanks to my travelling companions: Shinta, Bonita, Nana, Anggia, Metta, and Feby, as well as to our guide Alli.