Though much of my time in Iceland until this point has been exploring both new and existing fly fishing lodges (the Thvera and Kjrra Rivers in the west, Midfjardara in the Northwest, Sela and Hofsa in the North, and finally Jokla and Brieiddalsa in the Northeast), we have enjoyed one of the most scenic drives across the northern portion of the country. Iceland continues to serve as a photographer’s paradise and country for outdoor enthusiasts alike.
The drive from West to East took roughly ten hours, including a stop for lunch and time out to take photographs. I would suggest at least one overnight if not two if traveling the same route on Highway 1, although there is enough to see to keep you busy for a week! Lake Myvatn (also known as Midge lake) is an incredible site – almost alarming to see the swarms of midges until you realize what it is! This shallow lake lets light penetrate to the bottom, allowing the midge larvae to thrive, creating the perfect environment for trout and wildfowl to feed. Additionally, there is an array of activities from hiking to cycling, and whale watch. We made a quick stop at Hamafjall, a geothermal site at the foothills of a volcanic mountain. Incredibly scenic, from fumaroles to mud pools and mud pots, all with relentless activity (that I think I caught on film)!
After a trip up and over a mountain, we arrived in the Brieiddalsa Valley at Eyjr Lodge. Owned and operated by Throstur Ellidason, Eyjr is by far the most comfortable lodge we have stayed at to date, making it a great spot for anglers with non-fishing companions, or as a central hub for leisure travelers looking to explore the Golden Circle of Iceland (more on that in a future post) or to view the Northern Lights. (It is important to note that the lodge can operate all year, with little fear of winter weather hindrances.) With sweeping views of the mountains and river, fantastic food, fairly spacious bedrooms and friendly staff, the lodge can accommodate transfers by car from Reykjavik or air to Egilsstadir Airport with an under 2 hour transfer to the lodge.
Tomorrow we leave to explore the Golden Circle and the Hotel Ranga.
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