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Iceland Mag

Travel

Important reminder: Fimmvörðuháls is a challenging hike, not suitable for beginners

By Staff

  • Fimmvörðuháls right now Summer has not yet arrived in the highlands. Much of Fimmvörðuháls trail is covered in snow. Photo/Safetravel.is

Earlier this week ICE-SAR volunteers went on four different search and rescue missions in just about 24 hours to assist travelers in distress. In each and every case the rescue missions could have been avoided had the travelers shown sense and checked the weather forecast. 

Read more: Four distress calls in 24h in Central Highlands: Travelers fail to heed weather warnings

Safetravel.is, which is operated by ICE-SAR has issued a message to travelers, reminding them Fimmvörðuháls trail is a challenging hike, NOT suitable for everyone. Also: Summer has yet to arrive on Fimmvörðuháls and in the rest of the Highlands

"We would like to emphasize that this trail can be challenging and is not recommended for everyone. You must be honest about your abilities and sometimes that means choosing a less challenging hike. We recommend this hike only to those that are in good physical form, are comfortable walking in snow (for about 4 hours at this point), and have a hiking GPS. There is still snow falling in the mountain pass at this time of year and often there is fog which can lead to white out conditions."

It is easy to get lost on the hike, ICE-SAR warns, urging people not to rely on footprints in the snow. Go with a guide who knows the terrain intimately or use a map, a compass and or a GPS to find your way. 

Read more: Come prepared! Video reminds us travelling in the highlands is never a walk in the park!

The hike usually takes about 8-10 hours in ideal conditions. In the present conditions (snow and wet ground) the hike will take longer. 

"Do not hesitate to contact the rescue team if you are in trouble! If you need help planning for your hike or want to know more about the trails come to the City Hall and speak with a Safetravel agent or visit our website www.safetravel.is"

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