The Golden Circle

27.4.10

Faith is not about having the right answers. Faith is a feeling, faith is a hunch — a hunch that there is something bigger connecting us all.

(Unkown)

Þingvellir National Park

The Golden Circle. The popular sightseeing tour for foreign visitors. I decided to give the hike leader who took me on the torturous hike last week a second chance to redeem himself. Hahaha.  To my surprise he posted my blog commentary regarding the hike on his facebook page. I was a bit mortified when I found out. Quickly, I went back to reread my post hoping I didn't say anything too harsh. Whew. Good thing. I was honest, yet gentle. However, I cringe when thinking back, during the heat of the moment, while on last week's hike, how I told him if I would have known it would have been this bad, I wouldn't have come! Eeeek.

Good thing is, all is forgiven.

Fresh off his second chance, he picks up the group a half hour late! Ha! I feel compelled to add this in to give him a hard time. There's something about exuberant, excitable, enthusiastic, Icelandic hike leaders that have a way of getting under your skin, even with all their faults. Just kidding. No faults. There's something about being here that's gotten me a bit cheeky at the moment. At any rate, the hike leader had enough energy to put everyone in a delightful mood.  Even me, when feeling sour. That's no easy feet, let me tell you. Which was nice. Must be the mountain air or untainted drinking water.  He knows every mountain on this side of Iceland like the back of his hand and drives a tricked out bus. Believe me, it's nothing like the buses cruising around here.

"It's got personality." 

 This is how we roll ...

First stop on the Gloden Circle, Þingvellir National Park. What an expansive landscape! And, for dramatic affect, you can stand between the North American and Eurasian continental plates. You actually see where they are pulling apart at a rate of 19 mm per year. Fascinating.

The split between the North American and Eurasian Continental Plates.

Þingvellir National Park

 Þingvellir National Park

Second stop, a view of water shooting out of the ground with theatrical flair. Oh, how Mother Nature teases us with all her antics, as tourists circle the geysers, cameras in hand, ready to snap a shot. The Geysir geothermal area has an abundance of geothermal springs everywhere, steam lifting off in various parts of the park. Pretty awesome.



 Tic

 Tic

 BOOM!

Third stop, the queen of Iceland's waterfalls, Gullfoss. What magnificent beauty and power this waterfall exuded. Quite breathtaking. Once closer to the waterfall, you can feel the force of the rushing water, the temperature dropping a good ten degrees, and windy as hell. I loved it. Talk about prana. It's in abundance. Alive with energy.

 Gullfoss Waterfall
















 


 A closer look at Gullfoss

And, last but not least, a 3 km hike to take a dip in a natural hot spring. This is one of the most incredible and special things about Iceland. The land of fire and ice. Even on a cool day, you can sit in a hot spring, out in nature, without a care in the world. Now that's something. Deep in the hills, hidden down in an exquisite, glorious valley, as if in the middle of nowhere. This is life.


 Valley of steam from hot springs.




So to wrap it all up. I was asked time and time and time again, by the hike leader, "Did I redeem myself?"

YES!

In all seriousness, I would recommend him over many of the tours given. He gives a personal touch to seeing Iceland, and c'mon it's all about the bus.


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