Iceland Mag

13 Reykjavik

Iceland Mag


More Central Highland routes opened: Many roads and trails still impassable and closed

By Staff

  • Sprengisandur plateau The Central Highlands of Iceland are a barren volcanic wasteland and sub-arctic deserts. Photo/Vilhelm Gunnarsson

  • Sprengisandur The roads in the Central Highlands are little more than trails. Photo/Vilhelm Gunnarsson

  • Many roads still closed Large areas in the Central Highlands are still closed to traffic. Photo/IRCA

More major routes through the Central Highlands have now been opened to traffic. Sprengisandur road, F26 was opened on Friday. ICE-SAR Rapid Response teams have also been dispatched to four different bases in the highlands. These teams are able to respond more quickly to distress calls and requests for assistance.

You can check the status of highland routes on the website of the Icelandic Road and Coastal Authority.

A few days behind schedule
Sprengisandsleið mountain road F26, the road over Sprengisandur plateau between Hofsjökull and Vatnajökull glaciers, was opened on Friday, June 29, nine days later than in 2017. Due to the late spring and difficult conditions in the Central Highlands roads have taken longer to recover from winter. Many roads are still closed. Frequently major Central Highland roads remain closed until mid-July. 

Travellers are advised NEVER to drive onto closed mountain or highlands roads. Roads are closed to traffic for a reason!

Travellers are also advised that highlands roads, and all roads marked with an F (The F stands for Fjallvegur, Mountain Road) are only suitable for 4x4s and larger specially equipped SUVs. There are no service stations in the Central Highlands, and you must ensure you have a full tank before heading into the highlands.

Most rental car insurance does NOT cover damages caused by driving on F-roads. No rental car insurance covers damages caused when crossing unbridged rivers.

Before heading into the Central Highlands you should ALWAYS check road conditions at the site of the Icelandic Road and Coastal Authority, as well as checking the weather with the Meteorological Office.  


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