Trekking in the rain (or how to get soaking wet)

After four amazing days in Iceland it was already time to pack and go home again. But not before we did one last tour. Due to unforseen circumstances we had a trekking tour on our last day. Since the weather in Iceland can change from one minute to the next, it’s best to come prepared. Which I did with waterproof clothes bought in the Yunnan.

It was already raining on the road to Reykjadalur. Once we got off the car it was raining in earnest though. I was already miserable getting outside but was happy with my clothes. Nothing would happen to me, I had invested in proper  gear.

start of the trek to the Reykjadalur Hot Springs @Iceland

The hike was going to last anything between 45 and 90 (depending on the speed and fitness level of the other people in our group) minutes and it was going to be a first test for my waterproof gear. While trekking the Tiger Leaping Gorge in China it wasn’t raining, not like here. The trek itself is fairly easy and is very beautiful. At least I think so, due to the rain I couldn’t really see anything. But the pictures from a clear day are amazing. Mines are not so impressive. I am still happy though with the way they came out. They really show how miserable the weather was.

geothermal activity everywhere @Iceland

trekking in the wet to Reykjadalur Hot Springs @Iceland

this would be an amazing view without the clouds @Iceland

30 minutes into the hike it was clear that nothing was dry anymore. There was more and more rain coming down and my pants were already soaked. I could also feel a little squishing in my right boot (also bought in China). Seeing a waterfall in the distance made up for some of the wretchedness but only some. By now there was not only squishing in my right boot but also the left one.

we are coming closer to a waterfall near Reykjadalur Hot Springs @Iceland

the waterfall of Reykjadalur Hot Springs @Iceland

the sun is nowhere in sight @Reykjadalur Hot Springs

Up on top or rather at the place where we wanted to go into the hot spring there was no shelter. Just a wooden wall, crossed in four sections. So wherever I put my stuff it would be wet. Also my layers underneath (which were still dry at that point) would get wet while I undressed since it was raining sideways. By then I had given up the idea to getting down in dry clothes. Eventually I also gave up all thoughts of modesty and/or finding shelter for my clothes and muddled through the changing process. The moment of entering the hot spring was one of pure bliss. Ah, the warmth on my skin was just so fantastic.

just hop into the water @Reykjadalur Hot Springs

Was it worth it? Totally! We soaked for over an hour which was just about the best part of this tour. All the while it was intermittently raining, pelting rain or misting with rain. I was lying flat in the warm river and just had my head out. Always waiting for the perfect “window” to get out of the hot spring and get dressed. Not a chance. Not on this day.

Can you imagine going out of this heavenly oasis and changing back into wet gear?

Yeah, I couldn’t imagine it either but astonishingly once I had my clothes on, I felt at least warm. Or warmer then before in just my bikini. The picture from the hot spring is from after I got dressed again. I didn’t have the

Walking down then was a race and in under 30 minutes we made it. The drive back to the city was accompanied by sunshine from time to time. The cheek of it! How come it only made an appearance after we were back down?

The trek was amazing in hindsight. That I didn’t have proper gear was really no one’s fault but my own. I should have known that Chinese gear might not do the trick. The tour operator Arctic Adventures also provides waterproof gear in case you don’t have any. The ascent itself is easy and the reward at the end of it absolutely lovely. In case you are wondering which hot spring to get into while you walk up, just follow the signs. They give you a warning about the temperature. Yours, Pollybert

Reykjadalur Hot Spring @Iceland

 

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