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Weekly bulletin from Safetravel

Here we have the forecast for the next few days. Both road conditions and the weather forecast should be checked multiple times a day for the forecast given is not a 100% reliable such a long time in advance – check out: www.road.is + en.vedur.is 

Weather and road conditions:
Today will be a little warmer than previous days – we‘ll have rain/sleet rather than snow. Possible snow on mountain roads but freezing point will be at an elevation of 500-700 m.  We‘ll have icy conditions on mountain roads as well as in the lowlands all over tomorrow morning! Tomorrow we‘re expecting temperatures to hang around freezing point – going both below and above so some icy conditions might cause some trouble. We‘re expecting some precipitation along with this.

Fri: Some Rain or sleet for some time in most places but it won‘t be a great amount. Most wind will be found in the NW but that‘s expected to be around 10-15 m/s so no storm in the forecast but we‘re expecting storm-like weather on mountain roads after noon.

Sat: Mild temperatures and with wind but freeing point shouldn't be under 500-800 m (highest in the north). In the south we‘re expecting rain but also in the western parts of Iceland. 

The highland roads are all impassable as usual and will stay that way until late spring or early summer! Those travelers that wish to visit the highlands must do so with a scheduled tour in a modified vehicle. We‘ve had a few incidences where visitors think that having a 4x4 vehicle is enough to do this – that‘s of course not the case! The damages can cost thousands of dollars so it‘s important to inform out guests of this! 

Popular tourist sites:
As mentioned earlier, our highlands are only accessible in a modified vehicle incl. popular sites such as Landmannalaugar, Þórsmörk, Kverkfjöll, Snæfell and Kerlingafjöll. Not all these roads will be closed with a clear closure over the road so it‘s important that our visitors are informed of this before heading out. Some traveler think that a 4x4 is good enough to handle the wintery highlands but that of course is not the case.

The area arond Gullfoss is in quite good condition right now but it is likely that the trails will become icy again.  The main trail up to the waterfall is CLOSED, and will probably be closed until spring. It‘s important to inform our guests that there is a good and valid reason for the closure! Invisible spots of very slippery ice underneath the snow so it‘s very easy to slip and fall. Crampons recommended on other trails in the area. 

The trail towards Dettifoss is marked. Most of the snow has melted but it still freezes so it can be very slippery! Crampons are highly recommended.

The road from Ring Road 1 towards the falls (862) is very slippery but open and from there and north to Ásbyrgi is impassible. This road to Dettifoss often closes, so keep an eye on road.is

Two dry toilets are open.

Hiking trails in Ásbyrgi are good, snow and ice over everything all the way towards Botnstjörn, crampons are recommended. Road to Ásbyrgi from the north is extremely slippery at some points but should be passable for all vehicles. 

Reynisfjara is always dangerous, in all kinds of weather, due to the unpredictability of the  waves. It‘s not that the waves are big, it‘s the fact that they are sneaky. Every 7th, 10th or 12th wave goes a lot further up the beach than the rest and this can catch visitors by surprise that are too close to the water. The sand is very fine and the sheer pulling factor of the wave makes it easy for it to pull visitors out to sea. If you know that your guests are going there by themselves – make sure they are informed of this. 

Kirkjufjara by Dyrhólaey has been CLOSED due to increased dangers in rockslides and deadly sneaker waves.

Popular hiking trails:

Esjan: To hike up to „The Rock“ is fine. We don‘t recommend that poeple continue to the top due to ice. We recommend that poeple bring their crampons along as there is more and more ice on the trail as you go higher. Snow is covering the whole trail so it‘s hard to see the ice. People must not underestimate Mt. Esja because of how accessible she is – during the winter time you need proper hiking boots along with proper gear for winter!

Skaftafell: Mail trails up to Svartifoss and Sjónarnípa are clear. It could rain and freeze in the next days so it’s recommended that hikers have their crampons with them. Longer trails such as Kristínartindar are only for very experienced hikers! You’ll need a guide’s expertise with that one! Headlights should be kept in mind since the day is short!

The campsite is open but is not serviced. The only service in the area are bathrooms and two showers by the Information Center Skaftafellsstofa. People can pay for the campsites inside there and will be charged half price.

Laugavegur and Fimmvörðuháls: Both these trails are closed for normal traffic. There are no scheduled busses running to or from Landmannalaugar and Þórsmörk. The start of the Fimmvörðuháls hike above Skógafoss has been closed for now due to bad conditions and in attempt to restore and protect vegetation in the area.

Reykjadalur: The trail is likely to be very slippery as it has rained and then frozen, there can also be some snow with spots of ice underneath. The route is marked with trail markers. It can be very slippery so it‘s important that visitors wear proper hiking boots and some sort of crampons. It is a hike that might be easily accessible but during the winter it can be a lot more challenging than in ideal summery conditions. Headlights should be kept in mind! 

Glymur waterfall: the ideal spot to see the waterfall is from the southern side of the canyon but to reach that you need to cross Botnsá. Usually, during the summer, there is a log people can cross on but during the winter it is removed due to danger and therefore it is necessary to cross the river on foot. The trail after that can be quite steep and slippery. It‘s always better to have crampons on this hike. The hike can take around 3-4 hours at this time so it‘s important to keep a headlight close by.

Avalanche danger: Considerable (level 3/5)

Considerable danger in mountainous areas like Northern Westfjords, Tröllaskagi Peninsula and Eastfjords, and travelers should be discouraged from hiking into such areas. Further info can be found here: http://en.vedur.is/avalanches/forecast


South Iceland

Towns & Villages

The south of Iceland has several towns and villages, each with its own style, charm and points of interest. Selfoss is the largest town and has a variety of shops, services, many restaurants and fast food places. Most towns are close to the main route, making them accessible and enjoyable.

Explore map by categories

Map Höfn Kirkjubæjarklaustur Vík Vestmannaeyjar Hvolsvöllur Flúðir Laugarvatn Reykholt Laugarás Borg Brautarholt Hveragerði Árnes Selfoss Hella Stokkseyri Eyrarbakki Þykkvibær Þórlákshöfn