We walk walk walk along fall colored paths with short stubby native trees. Tall evergreen or birch trees in Iceland are planted anomalies designed to create a forest illusion, and in some cases in this rather exposed volcanic land, the illusion works. Upstream of Hraunfossar, the Children’s waterfalls, the river water flows and churns into a frothy turquoise with a whipped cream top, bashing and smashing its way against jagged lava sides and probably a kayaker’s dream. We stand over bridges, we take pictures, we do the things you do in the Icelandic fall, and the air is crisp and clear and smells like hot dogs. Oh wait, that’s the nearby cafe. Nevermind.
Goðafoss, waterfall of the Gods. Typically don’t include tourists in my shots but there was no shaking these dudes they stood in front of everyone taking pics, oblivious, but hey, it’s their trip, too. Moreover, I’m not inclined to try and Photoshop out their turista bright colors against such a craggy outpost.
One 3 kilometer hike in Northeast Iceland up,up,up. Check. Two major waterfalls: Hengifoss at the top, Litlanesfoss in the middle; you can see both in earlier blog posts here. And finally this sad, little throwaway waterfall at the bottom of the trail, and by the time I’d come back down it was raining like hell, stormy, big gusts throwing water sideways. Fact: Iceland is rife with throwaway waterfalls and drama queen weather that would be major hiking attractions back home. Get here to this geological baby of an island, folks.
“I’m number 3, Mom!” So says Hengifoss with not a little irony, lauding herself for being the 3rd highest waterfall in Iceland, located in the northeast interior. Do waterfalls have an identifiable gender? The parking lot was overloaded, and our guide Biggi said he was surprised there were this many tourists this far east. We had 60 minutes, so I hauled ass out of the minibus and sprinted up the trail, hauling up the 25 lb camera bag slung over my back, using my three legged tripod as a proxy hiking stick. Crossed somewhat treacherous algae strewn slippy rocks over a creek, slogged through mud, waited for an Argentinian tour group to clear the field of view, snapped a photo. Well….a helluva lotta photos, tbh. The view didn’t suck.