The diverse nature, from black sands to green meadows and up to glaciated volcanoes, makes Öræfi a living classroom in the dynamics of nature and climate change. Centuries of changes can be seen all about if you know where, and how, to look. Over the three days we aim to help participants understand how different elements shape the nature around us as we travel through the various ecosystems and geological formations. We will visit the outlets of the mighty Öræfajökull glacier and hike to the secluded Morsárdalur valley via the lush hills of Skaftafell. The area has an interesting history of people’s coexistence with the harsh but unique and beautiful nature.
The adventure starts with an introduction before setting out to one of Öræfi’s multiple outlet glaciers, where an unforgettable experience away from the crowds is guaranteed. We will dive into the formation and nature of glaciers, the history of glaciation in the area and the effects of climate change. Dinner will be served in Öræfaskólinn’s base camp at the Skaftafell camp site. Participants can stay at the campsite free of charge or plan another accommodation if they choose. On the second day we will set off from the camp and traverse the Skaftafell heath to reach the Morsárdalur valley on the other side. At the end of the valley lies a beautiful outlet glacier and Kjós, the eroded heart of an extinct volcano, where we make our camp for the night. On the final day we make our way out of the valley via the Bæjarstaður forest, which is one of the oldest in Iceland, and witness signs from glacial outburst floods. We end the trip in the base camp at Skaftafell and reflect on the past days.
Guided experience, Field school
Culture and Traditions, Fire, Ice and Rock, Plants and Animals, Land and Climate, History of Scientific Discovery
Some(but not essential)
The guides are qualified mountain guides and members of AIMG (Association of Icelandic Mountain Guides) and have a degree in natural and environmental science (Agriculture University of Iceland) / glacier geology (University of Iceland).