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We went into the Highlands again for our last day this far North. It was the same area as the day before but went a little bit further to Landmannalaugar, the main place to camp in the Fjallaback Nature Preserve. We started early in the morning and after a 2-hour drive, we got to the trailhead around 9 am. The hike we had planned was to summit both Brennisteinsalda and Blahnukur, but we started with Brennisteinsalda first. It's recommended that you summit just one of three peaks in this area in a day, but we are crazy enough to have done two of them. The views were unbelievable. We had much sunnier weather today compared to yesterday, which is good because you need the sun and the clarity to get good photos of this area. The mountains were such interesting colors, everything from typical brown and green, but also oranges, reds, and blues. It felt like we were hiking in another world.

We summited Brennisteinsalda without any issues and decided we wanted to continue on to the summit of Blahnukur, which translates to Blue Mountain. It's named that because, well, it's blue. Not bright blue, but a blue-green-gray that's really funky. That one was a little more difficult to summit since we practically descended all the way down Brennisteinsalda before hiking back up to Blahnukur. But we had good adrenaline going which helped us through the entirety of the hike.

Between these mountains is a giant lava field from an eruption in 1477 which framed the valley between the two mountains. The perimeter of the lava field was much clearer from Blahnukur than Brennisteinsalda.

Blahnukur was directly behind the sun for most of the hike so even from Brennisteinsalda we didn’t get a great photo of it, but it was the tallest peak in the immediate area which made me happy to have summited it.

We returned to our hotel at the Panorama Glass Lodge for the last night. I was happy to have driven on road 26 between F26 and F225 for the last time. That section is 12km of the worst washboard road I've ever driven on. The first time we drove into the Panorama Glass Lodge we took this road and only went about 40km/hr on it and it was so incredibly bumpy that I was afraid an airbag would go off. The following day we took the road at 80km/hr and the bumps were manageable, but keeping traction was difficult. But the trick with the washboard roads is to go really fast on them. Every now and then, I would need to swerve to avoid large tire-popping rocks in the road which resulted in us nearly sliding off the road a few times because of the speeds we were going. But driving slowly just wasn’t an option because of the bumpy road.

Driving into the preserve was fun today with all the rain from the night before. There were large puddles in the road that I intentionally splashed through getting the whole car soaked a few times. At one point on the way back, we had the windows cracked and another car passing us splashed up water into our car, a dirty lesson that we need to keep the windows shut... Luckily it wasn't that bad since the window was only down about an inch.

Trailhead Location
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7.67 mi 4.8 hrs 3,041 ft 2,316 ft
View Graph
Through the Lava Field
The Sheep in the Field
The the First Summit
Small People
Looking Back
Colorful Mountains
The Lava Field
Summit of Brennisteinsalda
Inaccessible Lake
Dangers Ahead
Steam Vents
Wooden Signs
In the Valley
Different Landscapes
Darker Soild of Blahnukur
Blahnukur Summit
Edge of the Lava Field
Colorful Rock