A Travellerspoint blog

Cold Beauty

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Iceland has turned magnificent and sunny again

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O you rock formations

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This varied hike from Thorsmork to the Fimmvörðuskáli hut had classically gorgeous views throughout

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Chris ventured where I dared not. Perhaps there was a tearful moment where I refused to come join him on the precipice. Perhaps there was not.

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Jyeah...I think that's where we're going

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It suddenly got a bit cold

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We don't have too many pictures together, but a kind stranger offered

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The valley of the shadow of...

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The thin white ribbon is a waterfall and river

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Why are we hiking to snow level again?

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For those of you who didn't already guess, Chris is pretending to be a volcano. The things I make him do. Now he's probably embarrassed.

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I'm going to decorate my home in these colors

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Finally at our destination

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Vaporize

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Our lovely hut--the only place we stayed indoors our whole Iceland trip

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Chef Chris is happy to have a proper kitchen!

* * *

And, as if by some secret signal, everyone in the hut began brushing her teeth at once, which of course meant a long queue at the sink. Everyone, too, went to bed at the same time, though not all to sleep but some to quiet, personal activities, such as reading by the attenuated light still curving over the edge of the glacier and bending into the windows of the hut. As for me, an empty table and the generous warmth of a heated room are too tempting an invitation to resist: I write.

It was a sunny, clear day--rare enough in Iceland, it seems. We skirted fantastical, twisted gorges, traversed plateaus that felt like the playing (or battle?) fields of the gods, scaled dunes of black ash, and finally reached this hut with its 360 degree views of the ocean, mountains, volcanoes, plains, rivers, valleys, glaciers--views that stretched until the horizon became a haze, and I thought here it is not the end of the world but the very top of it and all the earth, living and quiet, is below.

Chris never wants to leave Iceland, but I am a bit too cold to be quite as enthusiastic. Tonight's warmth is luxurious, but already I see that tomorrow's cold will be that much harder to bear. It always seems I have one layer too few of clothing.

But how can I complain, treated as I am to Iceland's phantasmagorical, hallucinogenic, austere, surprising, lively, dangerous beauty? (Oh but the warden's opened the door--too warm, she thinks--and stolen away my precious heat. To bed, to bed.)

Posted by chschen 05:00 Archived in Iceland

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