In an attempt to share my experiences of my expedition in Iceland as fully as possible I have decided to publish a slightly abridged version of my journal which I wrote throughout the trip. So here goes;

 

17th July 2012 (Day five!)

This morning we awoke fairly early in order to catch our 10 a.m. bus. Packing everything up and into my rucksack once again was a nightmare and I’m not looking forward to doing it everyday whilst trekking! This morning was my first meeting with porridge (this day was going to have to happen sooner or later!) but we had the pre-flavoured stuff today so it wasn’t that bad! I have seem to have lost my appetite here as I got full quite quickly.

The bus journey first took us to the geezers which smelt a great deal but were fairly spectacular! We also met the other team there and I went around with Lauren; it was great to hear from her!

 

Our next stop was the waterfall which was huge and so beautiful.

 

The rest of the journey took around three hours. The change from flat to mountainous land was a speedy one and soon snowy mountains were the only thing in sight! Although spectacular to look at I couldn’t help being hit with a sudden fear that I, myself, will be climbing those. Some of the journey was like travelling through Mordor with black barren stone fields surrounded by mountains and consequently the bus ride got incredibly bumpy with all the stones- it was nothing like I’d ever experienced before! It was with all the screaming from our bus that the driver suddenly turned to Mandy and spoke the following words, ‘I’ll take you somewhere where I’m not supposed to’. This, of course, was a fairly exciting prospect although a little scary. He drove the bus up one particularly steep mountain where he continued until he got to the top and didn’t brake until the very edge! At this point I think we were all praying for our lives! We had actually landed at a place called the ‘Ugly Lake’, however incorrectly titled.

the ‘Ugly Lake’

Cautiously we all re-entered the bus and took off to our intended destination. When we arrived at our fairly spacious (if in the middle of nowhere!) camp site and it was raining fairly heavily! This made setting up the tent difficult which was only worsened by the hard ground that almost refused the pegs.

We started tea fairly sharpish in the almost well-sheltered kitchen area. Tonight we had sausages and smash accompanied by two cans of Heinz beans that Dan bought at the camp’s shop that were 500 krona each! That means together the two cans cost five English pounds! It was pretty good though.  As usual it was seasoned with grit and grass but I’m getting fairly used to this camping-living.

This was the camp site with the infamous natural geothermal pool and I was gutted I hadn’t brought my swimming stuff. But as it turned out that mattered little as Mandy was determined to get me in that pool and so she fashioned a swimming costume out of binliners! I must have looked like a fool and I certainly wasn’t lacking in stares but it was so worth it! The pool was divine! Made even more so by a fine group of French men with long hair and beards who were also there! Although the pools were relaxing we were surrounded by mountains that were a constant reminder of the challenges ahead so my nerves were never completely at ease. The whole team and I spent around three hours in it and we even had the group meeting there! Mandy asked if we had any worries about the next day and when it came to me I didn’t know where to start! I managed to clear my mind a little with reassurance.

After getting dried off and changed we all went to bed.

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