Can You Hike Fagradalsfjall Without A Guide?
From the Reykjanes Peninsula to Fagradalsfjall Volcano, you will be presented with unprecedented raw scenery and a distinctly unique experience. You can undertake this journey on your own or take part in a guided tour that offers both land-based hikes and bird’s eye helicopter views of the site!
Whether it is gathering around fresh lava or learning about its geological formation from knowledgeable guides, there are plenty of activities for visitors wanting to explore Fagradalsfjall Volcano! Climbing to the volcano is a strenuous journey that will take you at least 4-5 hours. Along the way, you’ll traverse an uneven and rocky path with inclines and declines of varied heights. For this reason, it’s not suitable for those in poor health or children younger than 12 years old. Therefore, make sure to wear protective attire and sturdy hiking shoes before embarking on your expedition!
Prioritize your safety whenever you explore. Make sure to only adventure when the trail is open, be mindful of any potential hazards in the area, and always heed advice from Iceland’s Search and Rescue professionals.
Do you need a guide to hike fagradalsfjall?
Exploring the Fagradalsfjall Eruption Site can absolutely be done on your own, however most recommend that you join a tour. Not only will it make for a safer experience with the accompaniment of an expert guide, but you’ll also receive insider tips and information about other volcanoes in Iceland!
Whether you prefer trekking through the terrain or soaring high above, guided tours offer both hiking and helicopter experiences over the volcano.
With Fagradalsfjall’s now-active volcano, booking a guided hiking tour of this magical Icelandic mountain should be done far in advance to ensure your spot; as these hikes can sell out quickly! For expert hikers who have access to a vehicle, booking ahead of time isn’t always required; it’s possible to complete the hike unaccompanied.
Facts about Fagradalsfjall Volcano
Fagradalsfjall, a flat-topped and steeply inclined volcano found in Reykjanes peninsula located at the southwest of Iceland, is at the core of an extended volcanic system which encompasses a stretch that is 5 kilometres wide and 16 kilometres long.
After lying dormant for more than 800 years, a fissure vent opened up in Geldingadalir on March 19th 2021 — just to the south of Fagradalsfjall mountain. This marked the resurgence of an impressive volcanic complex that was formed during the last ice age. Explosions of magma sprayed into the atmosphere and streams of boiling lava coursed around mountains, meandering through lush valleys.
Molten magma was violently spewed at 1,300°C (2372°F), leaving behind a majestic volcanic scar of black rivers suspended in the valley. On September 18th 2021, the eruption abruptly dissipated – though only momentarily. On August 3, 2022, the explosive power of Fagradalsfjall Volcano was unleashed once more as a 300-metre fissure tore open in Meradalir Valley directly adjacent to its last eruption.
Seismic activity forced huge quantities of molten magma up from the depths, forming rivers of lava coursing through the valley. After scientists monitored the eruption site for a few days, they opened it to visitors again on Tuesday morning August 9th. Within a few days, fresh trails were created to provide breathtaking views of the eruption site and soon afterwards guided tours started up in the area.
Getting To The Fagradalsfjall Volcano
For those planning to explore Fagradalsfjall Volcano privately, it’s only a 45-minute drive from Keflavik airport or 1 hour away from Reykjavík – the enchanting capital of Iceland. A two-hour trek on a mountain trail is necessary to reach the various vantage points for spectacular views of the volcano.
Note that parking along Road 427 is forbidden.
Fagradalsfjall boasts two 24-hour car parks, each costing 1,000 ISK for a full day. To make the hiking route better and more accessible, landowners are able to use these funds for infrastructure improvements. Paying electronically with Parka.is is a breeze! Plus, every parking lot on the route offers surveillance with cameras.
If you’re planning a visit to the eruption site, remember that it’s an isolated area with no services. To make sure your trip is comfortable and safe, be sure to pack food and drinks or stop by Grindavík for supplies beforehand. Taking this extra precaution will ensure that your adventure runs smoothly!
How to reach the new Meradalir volcano eruption site
Located 3 kilometres beyond the Stórhóll viewpoint, Meradalir Fissure gives you an unparalleled sight of 2022’s volcanic eruption. You’ll be as close to 500 metres away from this momentous event – making it your ideal destination for a spectacular view!
In comparison to the Fagradalsfjall eruption site, accessing Meradalir is a more difficult task. To ensure your safety, DO NOT take any shortcuts across the old lava field! As it may look solid on its surface, this area can transform and become molten in a matter of seconds without warning. Therefore, stay alert and never forget that you’re venturing into an active volcanic zone with many potential dangers.
Prepare for a 7km journey with an elevation of 300 meters. The route is quite rigorous and filled with steep ascents up close to the crater. Set aside at least 4-5 hours to conquer this trek!
For the best experience, park your car at parking lot #1 and take route A. Trek over the terrain to make it to witness the impressive new eruption site!
What to Wear to Visit the Volcano
When planning a lengthy walk to the volcano, it’s essential to keep in mind that Iceland is renowned for its unpredictable weather. It can switch abruptly from a bright and sunny day to one blanketed with snowflakes – so be prepared for all kinds of climatic conditions, even during summertime! Layers are key when going on a hike, especially because you can always remove them if you get too warm. Make sure to avoid cotton clothing though since the material absorbs sweat and makes it difficult to retain your body heat in cold winds. Additionally, having good hiking boots is essential as the trail tends to be rocky!
When visiting the volcano, here are a few items of attire that will keep you safe and comfortable: Outfit yourself with a comfortable and cozy base layer of either t-shirt or thermal underwear made from wool or synthetic material. For maximum warmth and comfort, layer up with a wool jumper and trousers, fleece pullover, down vest or synthetic jacket. Ensure you have an insulated and waterproof jacket, warm socks, cozy hat, scarf and gloves.
What Equipment to Take when Visiting the Volcano
For those who would rather explore the volcano without a guide, be sure to pack the essentials such as a headlight or flashlight with extra batteries and a fully charged phone for emergencies.
Temperature can also have an effect on battery life; if it’s cold, you may find that your charge doesn’t last as long. In any dire situation or emergency, never hesitate to dial 112 for help – even a few moments of waiting could exacerbate circumstances and put Search & Rescue teams at greater risk when trying to rescue you.
Hiking poles can definitely help you tackling steep paths. Ice spikes for your shoes can make all the difference in colder temperatures as it’s likely that icy patches will be encountered on the trail. Energy-rich food and plenty of water should also not be forgotten! An extra bonus to bring with you would include camera equipment or binoculars – both allowing you to take snapshots of stunning vistas – plus some sunglasses to shield your eyes from harsh sun rays. Don’t forget about packing basic medical supplies either, just in case!
Check The Weather For Fagradalsfjall
When traveling in Iceland, be prepared for drastic changes between the four seasons – all within one day! In order to stay safe and comfortable during your hike, it is important to check the weather forecast often and make sure you are aware of any potential changes. Icelandic weather can prove unpredictable at times, so make sure you remain alert and flexible with your plans.
Furthermore, keep in mind that the volcano is located on a mountainside where weather conditions may vary significantly from those experienced near the coast.
Threats At The Eruption Site
When coming near an active volcano that has recently erupted, it is of paramount importance to remember the potential risks associated with such a situation. Conditions may fluctuate unpredictably and swiftly; thus, being familiar on how to respond adequately in order to prevent danger or threats is critical. Here are some essential precautions you should take. Ensure that your trip is safe and secure by visiting SafeTravel.is for up-to-date alerts regarding eruptions at the site you plan to visit, as well as other locations in Iceland.
Stay clear of volcanic gasses! Even though the eruptive activity is paused, there is still potential for degassing from the lava. Always remain away from depressions in the terrain and leave right away if you feel any discomfort. Not to mention, kids are more susceptible to gas toxicity; so be extra cautious when traveling with children near a volcano.
Do not ever venture onto the lava’s surface! If it appears to have cooled, don’t be fooled – underneath that thin crust may still lie dangerously hot molten rock. Should this fragile covering break, you could find yourself tumbling into an inferno of searing heat and destruction. Despite the forecast, climatic conditions can change abruptly and unexpectedly. Be prepared for sudden gusts of chilly wind, surprise showers, slick ice patches – even if you start your trek in tranquil weather!
Map Of The Area
For the most up-to-date map of Fagradalsfjall, visit the official Visit Reykjanes website for comprehensive information on walking routes and designated parking spots.
Frequently asked questions
Are visitors allowed to tour the eruption site?
You can typically access the site 24/7, but be aware that closures may occur due to weather or unexpected circumstances. For up-to-date details, check the Safetravel website frequently.
Has the eruption ceased?
At present, there is no activity at the site of the previous eruption. However, a new eruption took place from August 3rd to August 22nd, 2022 at Mt. Fagradalsfjall.
Is it allowed to bring children to the eruption site?
Yes, you may now bring children along. However, bear in mind that the hike can last between 5-6 hours, so parents should be mindful of this.
Is it allowed to walk on the lava at Fagradalsfjall Volcano?
No, walking on the lava is strictly prohibited and can be extremely dangerous. The top layer of the lava can easily break when stepped on, posing a hazard to individuals. It’s essential to respect and preserve this unique geological monument at Fagradalsfjall Volcano by taking care not to leave any traces such as throwing stones or making inscriptions on the lava.
Lavas are also protected under art. 61 of the Nature Conservation Act in Iceland. One significant risk of walking on new lava is accidentally breaking through the top layer over an unknown lava tube, which could result in severe injuries if someone falls into a tube that’s still several hundred degrees Celsius.
Where is the Fagradalsfjall Volcano located, and where does the hiking trail begin?
The Fagradalsfjall Volcano is situated on the Reykjanes peninsula, near Grindavík. You can find a map of the area that includes information about parking and hiking paths by checking the “Visit Reykjanes” website.
Is it possible to take a bathroom break while hiking at Fagradalsfjall Volcano?
Unfortunately, there are no toilets in the area at this time. It’s essential to plan accordingly and prepare for the hike by using restrooms before arriving at the location.