There’s a volcano under the ice – Iceland

The next stop was to learn more about glaciers. Skaftafell Visitor Centre was super informative, full of exhibitions and volcanic displays. It’s where we learnt about the volcanoes that lie sleeping under most of Iceland’s glaciers. When they blow, there’s the added risk of flash floods from all that ice being blasted by hellish levels of heat and lava. Bridges and roads being washed away are not uncommon. Eyjafjallajökull which erupted in 2010 and caused havoc all over Europe with the ash cloud was one such volcano/glacier. While Europe worried about airline disruptions, the skies above Iceland were clear but the fissures appeared in the ground, the area was evacuated and roads closed.

As well as all the learning, there are loads of well marked hiking trails starting from the visitor centre. A lot are either closed by October, or not suitable for those without proper gear, like us but there was a short route down to the glacier tongue.

You can apparently hear the creaks and groans of the ice when you’re up close.

Either my hearing isn’t good enough or the meltwater kept us too far away. Pretty easy to imagine though.

It’s my understanding that in drier months it’s possible to hike on the glacier here, even without a guide. Maybe you can hear creaks and groans then. 

Julie and were satisfied to stay on dry, rocky ground.

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