September 5, 2017
The driest part of the country called our names after days of itinerary crippling rain. Kayla, Katie Green and I couldn’t believe that we actually needed our sunglasses while we drove from the quirky fjord side town of Seydisfjordur to the Mývatn area. The sun highlighted bright fall colors on the shiny bushes which stood alone in open plains, and because of the lack of trees around, it made it exceptionally difficult to gauge the strength of the wind when we opened our car doors.
Thunderous water poured over Dettifoss, the most powerful waterfall in Europe and through the spray of glacial runoff, a vivid rainbow appeared. We walked along the rocky path and visited Selfoss and Hafragilsfoss in the ravine further north. Flat, distinct edges on the opposite side of the canyon offered us with spectacular views of bonus waterfalls flowing from the residue of the Vatnajökull glacier. We didn’t leave the area along the roaring river until visiting Hljóðaklettar where curious displays of unexplained rock patterns intrigue geologists and amaze visitors.
The beauty of the Mývatn region doesn’t come without a price. We nearly couldn’t make the drive to the Krafla power plant with the windows rolled up, let alone get out of the car due to the suffocating stench. I love to marvel at any and all geothermals, but the activity here was far too strong for our poor noses. On the other side of the main road, the novelty of another geothermal hot spot at Námafjall lasted only slightly longer. Explicit fumes blistered the Earth and burned the back of my throat in a way that only could be described as encountering Devil farts. Maybe Mary Poppins will arrive in the morning with the changing of the wind and allow us a more pleasant wander around the area tomorrow.