Eyjafjallajökull Volcano and Þórsmörk in a Super Jeep - an Adventure in Iceland

I joined an awesome tour last summer to Eyjafjallajökull volcano and Þórsmörk with Highland Adventures and got to ride in a super jeep for the first time in my life. We started early in the morning and our first stop was at the beautiful waterfall Seljalandsfoss.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall 

Horses in front of Seljalandsfoss waterfall in south Iceland.

Seljalandsfoss is one of the best-known waterfalls in Iceland, 60 meters high. One can walk behind Seljalandfoss which is a fun experience, standing so close to and behind this majestic waterfall is fantastic. Bring a raincoat as you will get wet from the drizzle.

Eyjafjallajökull volcano

Eyjafjallajökull volcano in south Iceland

From Seljalandsfoss we drove up to Eyjafjallajökull glacier and volcano.

Remember Eyjafjallajökull volcano which erupted in 2010 and spewed so much ash in the air that air traffic was affected, along with thousands of travellers being stranded on airports around the world?

Eyjafjallajökull peaks at 1,651 metres above sea level, but we didn't drive all the way to the top. The name of the glacier, which foreigners found difficult to pronounce means Island Mountain Glacier.

Deflating super jeep tires to be able to drive up to Eyjafjallajökull volcano

We drove up on a gravel road which then turned into a path. Before we drove up on the glacier the driver of the truck let out some air from the tires so that the journey would go smoother. That is a well-known method here in Iceland before driving on glaciers, it will make the tires float on the snow.

It was so much fun being in such a big truck being able to drive in such rough terrain. The truck just ploughed through it. I thought the trip was worth it if only to be able to drive through this terrain so smoothly. But there was so much more in store for us on this trip.

Mid Atlantic ocean, seen from Eyjafjallajökull

We were let out of the truck and hiked up on the glacier. What a fantastic view we had from there! We had encountered some fog on the way and were afraid that it would ruin the trip for us, but once up on the glacier, there was sunshine and warm! Well, at least we Icelanders in the group felt warm ;)

We spent some time on the glacier enjoying the view and the fact that we were actually standing on the notorious Eyjafjallajökull volcano - and then returned back down to the truck. There is some hiking required, but it is an easy hike and so worth it.

Þórsmörk Valley

Þórsmörk valley in south Iceland

Þórsmörk is a beautiful nature reserve named after the Norse god, Þór, the God of Thunder. The valley is a popular camping area, but also well known for its hiking, both short and long, as from Þórsmörk it is possible to go trekking up to Landmannalaugar, the pearl of the central highlands, and up to Fimmvörðuháls pass where the Eyjafjallajökull eruption started in 2010.

Þórsmörk valley in south Iceland

To reach Þórsmörk we had to cross several small rivers and one of the most notorious rivers in Iceland, Krossá river. 

Krossá river is an ice-cold glacial river, which changes its course frequently, which makes crossing it very difficult. Crossing it on the Procar truck was not that difficult though.

Þórsmörk valley in south Iceland

I must say, being an Icelander and having listened to the news all my life on accidents at Krossá river, some of them fatal, that I crossed the river with trepidation.

Þórsmörk valley in south Iceland

We had lunch in Þórsmörk and wandered around this beautiful valley surrounded by rugged mountains, Þórsmörk is for sure one of the gems of Iceland. After the volcanic eruption in Eyjafjallajökull in 2010 Þórsmörk was covered in thick layers of ash, but now it is as beautiful as ever.

Gígjökull glacier

Gígjökull glacier in Þórsmörk, south Iceland

On the way back from Þórsmörk we visited Eyjafjallajökull glacier again, this time Gígjökull glacier which is one of the outlets from Eyjafjallajökull. The volcanic eruption in Eyjafjallajökull took place very close to Gígjökull. 

Water which flows from Gígjökull runs into Markarfljót river and before the eruption, there was a glacial lagoon in front of the glacier. The sheer force of the eruption caused a massive glacier burst with incredible forceful flooding, which tore down the wall of the lagoon and filled it with eruption material, leaving the landscape there very different from what it was before the eruption.

Gígjökull glacier in Þórsmörk, south Iceland

This is a very rugged area. Being there is just out of this world and one feels very small against such extreme forces of nature, thinking about what actually happened here during the Eyjafjallajökull eruption.  I almost felt insecure about being in this area.

We crossed a small ice-cold river and had to jump on some rocks to be able to cross it. Two of the people in the group opted out (one of which was to become my husband a year later).

This way we were able to walk straight up to the glacier and visit an ice-cave at the root of the glacier. Even though it was not secure enough to enter the ice-cave just standing in front of it peeking in was so worth the trip up there.

Gígjökull glacier in Þórsmörk, south Iceland

It was now time to head back home. This had been a fantastic 5-hour tour and I left uplifted albeit a bit tired after an awesome day in Iceland's beautiful and rugged nature.

This was the first guided tour I joined back in 2013 and it is no longer operating. But there are several other similar guided tours, f.ex.:

Have a lovely time in Iceland :)

Contact Regína