Svínafell

Day 66. 3rd September. Jökulsárlón to Skaftafell including Svinafell, South Iceland.

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

From Jökulsárlón I drove towards Skaftafell, which is the headquarters of Skaftafell National Park and the main focus for most people for exploring some of the glaciers that come down from the Vatnajökull ice cap.  This is Svínafellsjökull, a glacier up a brief side road at Svinafell, just before Skaftafell.

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness
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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

Distant people walking on the ice on Svínafellsjökull (glacier).

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

This and the next four images are all from just in front of Svínafellsjökull.

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

Svínafell is also the site of an historic farm, close to the glacier, that features in Njal’s Saga.  Commonly said to be the most impressive of the sagas, this is a complex tale of revenge that stretches over several generations.

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

Towards the end of the saga, Njall’s sons kill their foster brother Hoskuldur.  Flosi Thordarson, uncle of Hoskuldar’s wife, who lives at Svínafell, assumes responsibility for revenge.  Ultimately, Njall and his sons die in their burning house (further to the west).

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

You can find a summary of the saga in Wikipedia, or read the full saga online.  I also found a brief film of an earlier fragment of the saga.  The first 30 minutes is the film, the rest people discussing the saga.

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

Ormur Ormsson (1241-1270) also lived at Svinafell and was the last Iceland chieftain to acknowledge Norwegian sovereignty.  He was later delegated as a commissioner of the Norwegian king in Iceland but drowned off the coast of Norway before he could take up the post.

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

Now having walked back from Svínafellsjökull, this is looking to the next glacier, Skaftafellsjökull.

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

While this, from the same place, must be Svínafellsjökull.

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

This is nearly half an hour later.  I think this must be looking across the scoria plain towards the huge Skeiðarárjökull glacier.

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness

A farmhouse under a cliff and a waterfall.

I am retracing my steps here, going back along the road before turning back again for Skaftafell.   I had missed my intended stop at Hofsnes, where there is a potential tour to a wildlife area and coast, but there was nothing happening on that day anyway.

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness .

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness .

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness .

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness .

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Architecture, Glacier, Iceland, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Skaftafell, Skaftafellsjökull, Svínafellsjökull, Travel, Wilderness .

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5 comments on “Svínafell

  1. Wow, impressive terrain! We did not get up to this section, so glad to learn more. Also had no glimmer of the sagas. I’ll need to include some better research befoire the next trip. Thanks for the post.

    Like

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