Iceland Day 7 – Hvammstangi, Bordeyri, Burdaladur along the South coast of the Westfjords to Talknafjoerdur

April 1.

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Had an early start with lots of driving planned for today. I wanted to make it into the Westfjords, even if just for a day or so. And of course I needed a hotpot – something you get used to way too quickly as a daily treat on Iceland.

Stopped at a campsite near Burdaladur for a quick fresh up.  Shortly after, I stopped at the hotpot Gudrunalaug, just a bit off road 60. Blown away by the beauty of this natural hotpot with a view into the snow covered mountains, I forgot to take photos. There is a old small wooden building where you can leave your clothes just next to it. I had the hotpot for myself, forgot the time and fell asleep a few times. Two hours later, I continued way too relaxed on the road 60 North.

The ride turned out very beautiful – and long. Road 60 follows the South coast of the Westfjords. It is a winding road with lots of hills to climbs, turns and changing weather and road conditions. Some parts are unpaved and very steep. I felt glad to pass these without snow or ice.

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On the exposed parts, the winds got stronger and stronger. It is irritating because there are few indicators on the wind outside the car. Being used to driving in Germany, you see trees and bushes shaking in the winds. In Iceland with so little trees, you just suddenly feel the push of the wind and the car swerves to a side of the road.

The winds can be beautiful too – like when blowing the snow over the road in the clip below.

I made it all the way to the small community of Talknafjoerdur around 5pm. I was planning to stay near a dirt road for the night – and the map promised another hotpot!

I went late to the hotpot around 11pm. It consists of several pools made of concrete with different depths and temperatures. I went so late because I was hoping for Northern lights. The skies had cleared up in the evening and the aurora forecast looked good – a promising evening.

A bit off track, I felt this hotpot is rather used by the locals of the small nearby village. And indeed – I connected with some locals. I ended up chatting a lot about living in the Westfjords, in a small 250 people town like Talkajfoerdur. I was so curious. And it seems fascinating. It is a functioning community, just really small. Everyone knows everyone. Many people function in multiple jobs. You can get some food and basic needs covered in the village’s small supermarket. There is one bit bigger shop in the the town in the next fjord. They do monthly shopping runs to Reykjavik, a car drive/ferry ride that takes 4-7 hours. And even if your internet is broken – the internet company has a support guy in the next town, so the wait is not more than 2 or 3 days for a home visit.

Not only a different world than Germany. I feel we are moving in Germany even further away. Everything and everyone gets more specialized. Speed and cost pressure dictate life. It was an engaging discussion. Thank you.

And one more thing. The Northern lights that night. Wow.

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Stars at night

And then the Northern lights came and blew me away.

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A couple of more shots. Shot with my Sony RX100 with a tiny tripod. First taken at 2am from outside the car. Late I moved in and realized the shots are still pretty good through the car windows.

This was really beautiful. Iceland might be a country mainly black and white in winter time. But nature has this beautiful show for the people there. And of course there are the hotpots… 🙂

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