Conquer Vatnajökull with Cramponsand
The first time we were on glaciers, rope up, using cramponsand ice axes.
Vatnajokull is the largest glacier of Iceland, even of Europe. It covered 8% of Iceland's land area. Now that we have arrived the foot of the glacier， we must put on crampons and walk through the glacier to different ultimate shocking beauty.
The glacier we're going to conquer is Falljökull. It's the small branch of Vatnajokull glacier. Falljökull means 'falling glacier' in Icelandic word. We start form the foot of the glacier, and our destination is that bellow the clouds. We felt that this is mission impossible.
Our guide of this glacier hiking is Snorri, a humorous handsome man. When he doing the introdction,he said his name pronunciated similar to 'sorry'. He had casually talked about the financial crisi. And said, during the financial crisis he was unemployed, but not a bad thing, he found his favorite work in glaciers. I love him and hate him, vhy? On the one hand, he is a very interesting person, introduce us the glacier lanscape with simple and vivid words. On the other hand, he is a person love challenge, so that he push us for constanly challenge. Of course, this is entirely when he ensuring safety of everyone. When facing difficult situation, he will walk through it first to check it, if he make sure we could conquer it, then leading us to go. some times, he will make some step by ice ax, if necessary, then it'll become easier for us.
Since Glacier has been keep changing, the hiking route may vary from day to day. During the hiking, we even used the rope in the process of walking and climbing. The climbing on some steep slopes has become the most memorable experiences of this trip.
Compare to person who is on the ice climbing, our climbing is just a piece of cake. Ice climbing who rely entirely on ice ax in hand and crampons on feet. Hand and feet to do support, climb one the ice hall which is almost vertical. It is admirable.
Melt water from glacier is the world's purest water. But how to drink? Most people will hand water to drink, but this have polluted it. Snorri taught us the unique skills, with ice ax do support, in push-ups gesture, then you could drink the water directly without using hands. This is not easy, to drink the purest water, it worth, do you think so?
White, black, light blue, it is the most common color on glacier. One of the most beautiful landscape is the blue ice cave. The blue tranfer form dark to light, it megical. If it's winter time form November to the next March of Iceland.there's a activities of walking into a large cave. Imagine, in the big ice cave, the refraction of light is surrounded by a stunning deep blue. Unfortunately, in the summer, ice cave is melting gradually. We could only find these small ice cave on the glacier. It's already too beautifull to see.
I have to thank Snorri, starting from the foot of the glacier. He took us not only reach ice falls, we continue hiking up to reach half the height of the ice falls. See, it's the location pointed by the ice ax. After down, I can't belive myself. Though tired, I felt very proud, this trip without regret.
About Glacier Hiking Tips:
In Vatnajökull National Park, close to Skaftafell, there are two main glacier hiking options:
First, the lower Glacier Wonders, with lower difficulty and walking short glacier.It takes about three hours the whole. And walking on ice for about one hour;
Second, Glacier Explorer, medium difficulty glacier trekking, that's the project we participated in. It takes about five hours the whole trip. And walking on ice for about three hours. When time is longer, your experience on ice is more rich, you can see more glacial landforms.
In addition, there are some more difficult activities to choose, such as ice climbing and so on.
Recommended glacier trekking guide company: Glacier Guides. This is a larger company, several teams walking at the same time. In general, a group of 8 people in a team, rich wizard experience, explain funny.
Official website: http: //www.glacierguides.is
This trip is devided in to 16parts, go to the nex part for excited journey.