Icelandic Horse Riding was fun, but the primary reason we were on the Horses and Glaciers Tour with Icelandic Mountain Guides was to go walking on a glacier.
Excitement levels quickly started rising after our guide Jón picked us up from Eldhestar’s farm and began driving us towards Mýrdalsjökull glacier, approximately 2 hours southeast. After a quick stop at the picturesque Skógafoss waterfall, we finally arrived at the edge of the spectacular glacier and were fitted for our crampons.
We were then handed our ice axes, which weren’t really required for our glacier walk but were told “look great in photos”. Good enough for us! After everyone in our group had their crampons and axes, it was time to trek across the lava field and over to the ice.
Upon reaching the glacier tongue, we paused for a moment in awe – are we really about to go walking on this natural wonder?! We were experiencing another one of those truly magical travel moments words can’t describe, many of which have occurred for us in Iceland.
Jón showed everyone how to attach their crampons (a lot harder than it looks!) and went over a few basics of glacier walking before taking the lead and stepping out onto the ice, making it look easy.
We slowly and awkwardly followed, crunching our crampons into the ice as hard as we possibly could to ensure we weren’t the first to fall over. The two of us weren’t making fools of ourselves today!
Climbing up that first steep hill was slow and strenuous, but we soon found our groove and walking on ice became natural to us!
For the next 90 minutes we walked around on the glacier and Jón introduced us to crevasses, ice caves and explained how the glacier works. We also learned that the varying color bands can be used to tell the age of the ice, much like growth rings around a tree trunk. Fascinating, right?
Walking on a glacier in Iceland was an amazing experience, made even better by our guide Jón who taught us so much about the spectacular terrain that surrounded us. We knew we were going to enjoy our glacier walk, but had no idea that we would love it as much as we did!
Our time on the ice concluded with some free time to explore some of the nearby ice caves and take some photos. As you can imagine, we didn’t waste any time!
Iceland Mountain Guides have a range of glacier tours and ice climbing adventures for your visit to Iceland. We only got a small taste of what it’s like to walk on a glacier but are already looking forward to walking on ice somewhere else in the world very soon – it truly is quite the adventure!
Have you walked on a glacier before? Or is it on your bucket list?
A huge thanks to Eldhestar and Icelandic Mountain Guides for providing us with a complimentary Horses and Glaciers Tour. As always, all thoughts and opinions are our own.