Hi everyone! Like most other people staying in Iceland recently, I took a trip to see the newly erupted volcano. And I have to admit– it was amazing. The hike itself took about two hours for us, though luckily it was a pretty nice day. The first leg of the trip was across a field, which was situated between the parking area and one of the mountains that forms a wall of the valley-basin where the volcano is located. After making it to the base of that mountain, we began our journey upwards. To make it into the basin, you have to scale one of the surrounding mountains, making it by far the most difficult part of the trip. The climb itself was pretty steep, with some scatterings of mud and loose gravel, but thanks to the Search and Rescue team the toughest part had a support rope. This came in handy, as the top of the ridge was pretty difficult to maneuver up. It was amazing to see so many people, young, old, and in between, climbing up to catch a glimpse of the eruption.
Once at the top of the mountain, there was a plateau to walk across before we finally reached the valley which housed the volcano. It was really cool to look down into the basin, and I couldn’t help but smile. Smoking black lava fields and spews of magma covered the scene in front of us. Little bubbles of molten rock, and hot rivers also could be seen. We took a quick break and picnic, before making the steep descent downwards towards the rock walls of newly erupted lava. My family and I had been watching the RUV live stream before visiting (I think this offers amazing views of the scene if you aren’t able to make it in person– I’ll link the website below), so I thought I had known what I was in for. But surprisingly, what had appeared to be a thin sheet of rock on the floor of the basin turned into a wall taller than me! As we got closer to where the cooled lava ringing the edge of the valley, we could hear the cracking and crumbling of the rock itself. In fact, every so often, little shards of rock would explode outwards in a puff of smoke as the wall itself advanced. We were even able to get an “up close” glimpse at some of the magma through a crack in one of the lava rocks near us. It truly was an amazing view, and an unforgettable experience.
Just recently new volcanic eruptions have been sighted up. It’ll be really interesting to see how long each of the eruptions last for, and how much lava they produce. But until then, it’s important to stay safe around volcanoes, and listen to all information put out by rescue teams, experts, and the government!