Iceland traverse east-west

The idea of crossing Iceland on foot came up about 2 years earlier. Summer 2016 became the moment for this idea to come true.

Many people have crossed Iceland on foot. During planning I asked myself: is the most common direction of the march – from north to south – the only possible? Or maybe it is possible to cross Iceland in the other direction? The answer to the this last question was: “YES”. In July and August 2016, during 28 days of hiking, I connected two extreme geographical points of Iceland: Cape Gerpir, the easternmost and Cape Bjargtangar, the westernmost. 935 km long traverse was one of the few, that connected east and west coasts of Iceland. It was also probably the second crossing to connect those 2 points of country.

trawers islandii wschód zachód

It took few weeks of walk through the volcanic wastelands and lunar landscapes, along glaciers and across glacial rivers, to cross the Iceland’s highlands. Icy rivers, that begin from the Vatnajokull and Hofsjokull glaciers and flow towards the north, strongly shaped the course of my journey. They blocked me and forced to add more than 60 km to my plan. Rains, sandstorm, swollen rivers, strong winds – Icelandic emptiness repeatedly showed me its unfriendly face. However, I crossed Iceland during a surprisingly good and stable weather. This first trip to the “north”, completed with success, was also a good lesson of including deposits into trips planning. It was also the inspiration for the next adventure in Iceland.