Left in the morning the beautiful wild camping spot North of Grevinik towards Akureyri. I was looking forward to a coffee in a nice cafe with decent internet access.
At 9.30am in Akureyri, I walked the streets for a bit. The second biggest town or city of Iceland still felt like in hibernation. I found an open bookstore, checked books and settled with coffee and cake for their internet. Iceland feels small and the tourists are still limited – ran into Luise first and Herbert and his wife later in the same bookstore.
I came to Iceland mainly for the nature and open landscapes, so I hit the roads again up North on the Western side of the same fjord.
Is I drove up the coast towards Dalvik, situation got more and more snowy. The Tunnels on the road around Olafsjoerdur and Siglufjoerdur are special. They just have one lane and every two hundred meters or so a stop to let oncoming traffic past. With every tunnel passed, the roads were more covered with snow.
Heading back South on the other side, I came by Hofsoes. Checked up the swimming pool which looked nice open to the sea, but it would only open in the later afternoon. Since Herbert had recommended Grettislaug, I decided to drive all the way to the Grettislaug hotpot and camping place.
Passed Saudarkrokur, there was a bit less snow.
Made it at 5pm with a starting snowstorm to the hotpot and camping place around Grettislaug. Did a quick check on the facilities, but stayed in the car for the night. No hotpot in the middle of a snowstorm. Parked on the wind protected side of a cabin.
Photo is taken the next morning after the snowstorm.
Despite the storm, had a good night even with Northern lights showing after 10pm!
Got an early start at 6.20am – good. Rested enough for another long day. We will be aiming for 10 before 10am, 15 by 1pm and as early as possible 23 miles to hit Sierra City before the store and restaurants close.
We made 9.8 at 10am – not bad. The morning took us over some hills with amazing views again – this wide open landscape doesn’t stop to amaze.
Since we only wanted to approach Muir pass, we could afford a slow morning. Woke up short before 7am, was greeted by a deer standing right next to my tent.
Hit the trail 8.30am. Saw many deers on the trail. Ascend towards Muir pass starts slowly.
No traveler, whether a tree lover or not, will ever forget his first walk in a sugar-pine forest. The majestic crowns approaching one another make a glorious canopy, through the feathery arches of which the sunbeams pour, silvering the needles and gilding the stately columns and the ground into a scene of enchantment.
– John Muir
Break at a river rock bed. Beautiful.
Lunch break around 12pm at Big Pete meadow, mile 833, 9200 feet.
Hiking to the last listed tentsite at 11000 feet at mile 836 – just 2 miles and 900 feet altitude away from the pass. This will put us in a good position to go over the pass early avoiding too much snow melting and with that postholing.