Iceland is a place that is just as beautiful and otherworldly as it is foreboding and bitter. Once the sun sets, the rolling hills fade to black and the chill sets in. The most rewarding feeling is retreating back to a place thats light and warm, protected from the wind and rain.
The highlands of Iceland is one of Northern Europe’s true wildernesses – with almost nobody inhabiting areas hundreds of kilometres wide. You can drive for hours and never encounter another soul. Here, nature is at its most raw, barren and expansive. This is what makes the highlands so intimidating, but also alluring. No trees or buildings obstruct the views of glacier tongues, volcanic craters and intertwined rivers. There is is no barrier to separate one from nature – time becomes irrelevant, connection to the outside world begins to dwindle.
After a night of storms, we packed up and headed towards Landmannalaugar. In a secluded space, we set up by a riverbed that from above, reveals hundreds of river streams converging. By the calm waters, it was truly a contemplative space to wake up to – zipping open the door to see the rivers and distant mountains right at our entrance.
Making our way down along the Sprengisandur route, we crossed from North to south into the Fjallaback nature reserve. Under hazy aurora filled skies, we bunkered down in the Heimplanet Fistral and Cave. Despite Iceland’s vicious winds and rain, the tents stood rigid and determined. Sleeping out in these landscapes can sometimes feel like you’ve woken up on another planet.