Monday, 4 September 2017

Hiking A Glacier In Iceland

Those of you who may know me will realise I am not the most outdoorsy person, but all this changed when I visited Iceland in February this year. Iceland is such a beautiful and awe inspiring country, dare I call it awesome even, that when I returned this August I felt I had to see more of nature. 

My husband and I took my son, who is studying visual effects at University with us and we decided to do a self-guided movie location tour of the country, based on this Guide To Iceland article.



Now my son loves science-fiction movies so we decided to choose the Blue Ice tour, hiking the glacier Svínafellsjökull situated in the Skaftafell Nature Reserve, where they filmed Interstellar. We paid £88 each for this two and a half hour tour, so this is how we got on. 



Mr W and Jake looking mean and moody

The tour was graded as easy and is suitable from the age of 8. The company running the tour was Icelandic Mountain Guides and we met at their hut 15 minutes prior to the booked time of 10.30am. Waterproof clothes and hiking boots are recommended for the tour and we rocked up all kitted out. My son, Jake had his new boots on from North Face and coat from Peter Storm, kindly provided by Millets, review to follow. 




We met our tour guide Helkar and she gave us crampons to put on later, which would fit over our boots to help mobility on the ice, a harness and an ice pick each.

So we jumped onto a coach and after a ten-minute ride to the glacier, we were there. 


The glacier was more beautiful than I could have imagined, with white ice poking through the black volcanic dust. Helkar explained the name Svínafellsjökull meant pig mountains glacier, as the mountain behind is called pig mountain.  



Jake kitted out
Coat - Peter Storm and Boots - North Face all from Millets

We were then shown how to fit our crampons and given a safety briefing.

The crampons fitted over our boots easily

Then to hike!



As we walked on the glacier, I felt surprisingly safe, the crampons really dug into the ground. You still had to keep your wits about you and avoid holes in the ice. At certain areas, we were advised to follow Helkar in line closely behind but in other areas, we could walk a little more freely. The ice picks helped us when walking in tricky areas and especially as we climbed up higher parts of the glacier.





Helkar gave us plenty of opportunities to stop for photos and even though she led she constantly checked where our small group was. 



The blue we saw in the ice was compact ice when snow falls and is compressed and becomes part of the glacier. 

The glacier was used in the film Interstellar and also Batman Begins and Helkar told us that for Interstellar all the tours were bought out for weeks by the film production company.



The glacier tour was fun, not too hard and the tour guide was professional and informative. It was certainly something you don't do every day and we all really enjoyed it and most importantly we all felt safe. If you go to Iceland and find yourself in the South of the country, I would highly recommend the Blue Ice glacier tour.


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If you want to read more about Iceland check out my posts on Why You Will Love Iceland and 10 Money Saving Tips For A Trip To Iceland. Also check out our Iceland videos here from the travel vlog/blog Fly Drive Explore.

Have you been to Iceland? Would you do this tour?

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31 comments

  1. First of all, the photos you captured are stunning! It's truly breath taking when you think about the things we have in our world. Secondly, you've made me want to hike a glacier in Iceland! I hate feeling unsafe or unsure of a tour guide, so the fact you guys felt safe and had fun has definitely given me a bit of inspiration to try it out myself!

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    1. Thank you! The world is such an amazing place isn't it? The tour guide was excellent and we felt really safe with her.

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  2. Whoa - now this is an experience that I need to add to my bucket list. Iceland is already on there {I mean, it's a no brainer, right?} but I had no idea that you could do this sort of expedition. Very cool and great photos!

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    1. It was a really cool experience (forgive the pun!)

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  3. I adore Iceland and really want to return. Your photos are gorgeous, love that you hiked a glacier!!

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  4. Wow what an amazing experience! Iceland has been on my bucket list for so long - not sure I'd be brave enough to give this a try though! x

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    1. Honestly we felt very safe. With the crampons the ice didn't feel slippery at all underfoot.

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  5. Oh wow I bet this was an absolutely amazing experience, not often you get such a chance to do something like that.

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  6. I'm loving these photographs - it's my dream to go to Iceland - hopefully I'll get to go next year.

    http://ohduckydarling.com

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  7. Wow I'm so jealous that you have done this, this is on my to do list and looks amazing. great pictures btw :) x

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  8. OMG, that looks incredible! I had no idea you could even do that! One more thing to add to my "to do in Iceland" list!

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  9. wow what an incredible experience! I'd love to do something like this x

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  10. WOW!! What an experience!! This is something I would love to do but I think it would be physically impossible!! Amazing!

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  11. I haven't been to Iceland yet, but I'd love to do exactly this when over there!

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  12. It's so cool that the glacier was used in Interstellar. I love that the tour was fun as well x

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  13. Such an awesome experience for you. Iceland is indeed a beautiful country. This is also part of my bucketlist. To see the northern lights is one of my dream.

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  14. Oh man, that's such a cool think to do! One day I'll be able to do stuff like this... I hope...

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  15. I really want to go to Iceland and I'd love to do something like this, it's a bit different to your usual tours there x

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  16. Oh my goodness, this looks amazing - I don't know what I expected a glacier to look like, but that is just incredible. I so want to visit Iceland...

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  17. Sounds like you had quite the fun experience. That place Svínafellsjökull is breath taking, I wonder if the glaciers would twinkle under the moon at night.

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  18. I really wanted to do this when we went to Iceland, but I just didn't get the time. Something to go back for at least.

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  19. Oh my! That was my first reaction when I read the title. I was just thrilled with your tour. This is something out of the ordinary. Glad you had fun.

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  20. It really looks a great experience and I wish I can experience hiking someday

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  21. Fair play! The scenery looks like something out of Game of Thrones I bet it was breathtakingly beautiful. What an experience to have x

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  22. This sounds like such an amazing experience - I'm off to Iceland in December, though not sure I'll get to do anything this cool! (or should I say "frozen" as it's going to be freezingggggg in December!) x

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  23. I really wanted to hike a glacier in iceland when we last went... although I was 25 weeks pregnant so it was a total no go. Next time though!

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  24. Oh this is awesome!!! Its something I'd really love to do what a beautiful view!

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  25. That is so cool. Hiking is one of my family's favorite things to do.

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  26. Hiking a glacier looks like a real challenge. Well done you, guys :))

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