Day 1 – Reykjavik – Landmannalaugar – Hrafntinnusker
On the first day we head straight to Landmannalaugar where we will arrive at around 11 o’clock. We set out on our hike as soon as we get there. Through the geothermal landscape we set our aim for Hrafntinnusker, obsidian desert the place takes its name after, where we will be spending the first night. Today you can expect to come across a magnificent geothermal scenario, including Stórihver Hot Spring, and rhyolite mountains.
Driving time: 3-4 hrs. Distance: 12km (7.5 mi). Walking time: 4-5 hrs. Ascent: 470 m (1540′).
Overnight: Hrafntinnusker campsite
Day 2 – Hrafntinnusker – Álftavatn
We leave the campsite after breakfast and continue on the Laugavegur trail. Today we walk along Mt. Reykjafjöll and into the spectacular Jökultungur area. Here the geothermal activity has turned the ravines red and yellow. From the top of Jökultungur we have a great view over lake Álftavatn and Fjallabak. Before reaching Álftavatn where we will be spending the night, we have to cross the first unbridged stream we will encounter.
Distance: 12km (7.5 mi). Walking time: 4-5 hrs. Descent: 490 m (1610′).
Overnight: Álftavatn camping site
Day 3 – Álftavatn – Emstrur
This day’s hike starts like yesterday’s ended – with a stream crossing. This part of the trail takes us through black sand deserts on our way to Emstrur. The volcano Stórasúla and the flat-topped Hattfell mountain make a fantastic contrast, as they rise from the desert draped in green. Eyjafjallajökull and Mýrdalsjökull glaciers lie spread out before us when we reach Emstrur. We take time to walk to Markarfljótsgljúfur, before reaching the hut in Botnar, to admire the 200m deep canyon. We will pitch our tents in the little green oasis at Emstrur.
Distance: 15km (9.5 mi). Walking time: 6-7 hrs. Descent: 40 m (130′).
Day 4 – Emstrur – Thorsmork – Reykjavik
We leave Emstrur and continue on our way to Thorsmork. We will be hiking within a few kilometers from the great Mýrdalsjökull glacier today and can expect a great view of the glacier. As we descend into Almenningar the landscape changes and some trees start to appear, preparing us for the birch forest in Thorsmork. The Laugavegur trail is behind us once we reach Thorsmork.
On our way to Reykjavík, you can get a glimpse at the majestic Seljalandsfoss Waterfall, on of the most popular attractions in Iceland. We expect to be back in Reykjavík in the evening.
Distance: 15km (9.5 mi). Walking time: 6-7 hrs. Descent: 300 m (985′). Driving time: 3-3,5 hrs.