Golden Circle, Vík – Iceland day 2

On December 25, 2012

Þingvellir was the first stop on the Golden Circle after getting our car (named Fisher). This is an old place, hosting the first parliaments (930 to 1789) of Iceland as well as showing the tectonic plate separation. The largest natural lake, Þingvallavatn, is within the national park as well. Most of the park had some fuzzy and soft looking peat (or moss I have no idea).

After driving on some icy roads with Fisher’s awesome studded tires we made it to Geyser (pronounced GAY-zeer as the guidebook pointed out). It looks like the earth is letting off steam by the side of the road. It also reeked of sulfer. Towns with unlimited natural hot water (Reykjavik…) from the same sort of springs would have their tap hot water smell the same. Taking a shower with mint soap would smell like rotten eggs and mint, causing one to wonder if the chef tried to mask the bad flavor of the eggs with mint…. great shower thoughts.

After Geyser we headed to Gullfoss, a rather large and impressive waterfall. The way down to the falls was closed and icy. It was also insanely cold and windy, blowing droplets from the falls into my face whenever I’d look in the direction of the falls.

Icelandic horses! Not much to say here, we just stopped by the side of the road. The two black horses took interest and wandered over, letting us pet their heads.

There were a few other waterfalls on the road from Gullfoss down to Vík. These we could get closer to and even walk behind. The path behind one waterfall was extremely treacherous.

This night we decided to try to see the Aurora Borealis. The forecast for the solar phenomenon gave the night a medium (on the low side) chance for them to be visible. The rest of the nights of our trip had an even worse probability. Once again I was lucky enough to see it even though it was considerably fainter. Two for two isn’t bad…

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