I’m a lucky boy in that my work occasionally sends me to nice places. This year it is Iceland.
Going to Iceland in April, no one should really expect very good weather. In many ways you should never expect good weather at any time in Iceland, but April is a particularly tricky month. It might still be winter or spring might have arrived. Fortunately, spring was here for most of the first week. Every morning I was greeted with a sunrise over the local mountain, Esja, and blue skies. Gorgeous!
I managed to find half a day and made the effort to give Esja a go. Two buses later I was at the hiking centre at its base. I wasn’t alone in wanting to make the most of the lovely weather – quite a number of people were streaming up and down.
Seeing all the snow on top, i’d packed more or less all of my warm gear. It goes without saying that very soon i’d stripped off all my outer layers and was getting quite a sweat on as I climbed. The path was clearly defined, though very muddy and with snow patches in places. This was also my first try at using walking poles. I’m not sure how you are supposed to use them but they seemed to help, particularly downhill.
Near the top the path becomes very steep and turns into a snowfield. A number of previous walkers had kicked steps and made a path of sorts. I was very concerned about making my knee injury worse but thought I should at least try and get to the top. I got with about 50 metres of the top but after slipping and nearly twisting my leg a few times I decided to call it a day.
I reckoned that the quickest and easiest way down was a (controlled) slide on my bum. This did get me down but I did then have a soaking wet seat of my trousers. It WAS fun though!
I then walked down in plenty of time to catch the bus back to Reykjavik. Fun times!