20 January 2012

The Frequent Flyer: Walking on Ice (and Fire)

When in Iceland one of the things you MUST do is go glacier trekking, there's nothing quite as surreal as walking over a huge block of ice over a volcano which could erupt at any moment. My inner adventurer was out in full force that day and pretty much as soon as we stepped on to the glacier, crampons on and ice axe in hand, there were rumblings down below.

Some of you may remember the volcano Eyjafjallajökull that erupted in 2010 which grounded flights across Europe due to the volcanic ash being thrust into the air, well that volcano was just a 10 minute drive away and the ash from that eruption is still covering this glacier and it's surrounding villages which makes for some interesting formations or "Ice Monsters" as the Icelanders call them.

I've never really thought of myself as the "outdoors type" and usually when it's this cold you're more likely to find me indoors sitting next to fire with a big cup of tea and a ginger biscuit in my hands rather than outdoors hiking but when you're surroundings are this beautiful braving the cold for a few hours is totally worth it, in fact I pretty much forgot about the cold 10 minutes in and was just in awe of the absolute beauty and sheer white emptiness of the place.

After immersing myself in the world of Westeros for the past few months this was exactly what I imagined it would look like beyond The Wall, little did I know that just one week later Game of Thrones would actually start filming at the very place I was standing!

I enjoyed every single minute of my trek, it was such an amazing experience to be standing on a glacier seeing the beauty around me and exploring all the intricate ice caves and seeing this strange and unusual ice formations. It was surprisingly very relaxing to even though there were little rumblings underneath but they actually made me feel even more excited rather than scared.

Must admit I do quite fancy myself as a bit of an explorer (ice axes are definitely my new fave accessory) and it's an experience I would happily do all over again or even push the boat out and try my hand at a bit of ice climbing as those ice caves are really something beautiful.

Iceland has definitely stolen my heart and is one of the most beautiful countries I've ever had the pleasure of visiting and for anyone thinking of going there I would say just do it, a picture can only capture so much but the experience of being there and witnessing all its beauty cannot be replicated and is simply out of this world!

Love & Icicles
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