Tag: photography

Landscape photographyPhotographyTravel PhotographyZambia

Life in Zambia

Some of you may not know, but since about mid February the family and I moved down to Zambia to adopt a beautiful little boy named Richard. Life here is certainly different, and having two son’s instead of one is also a big change. We live in Lusaka on the southern part of town in an area called Chalala. It’s a nice, quiet area of town that is rather close to the orphanage where Richard was living.

This hasn’t been a trip of wondering safaris and adventure. For the first month we only had permission to come by and visit Richard. So, everyday for a month we drove back and forth to visit Richard. Now, after two months we have full custody of Richard and he seems to really like being with us. We are now finally starting to be able to explore, unfortunately I am a bit out of action at the moment with a broken rib after falling hard on a slippery floor.

However we have made a few outings, with the most spectacular being Livingstone and Victoria falls. Livingstone is the town that hosts Victoria falls on the Zambian side of the border.

On the first day of being in Livingstone it was raining heavily – so instead of heading to Victoria falls we decided to do Musi-oa-Tunya national park for the day. It was an incredible journey where all the animals were out enjoying the rain. Giraffes, Elephants, Water buffalos and monkeys among many more.
There is an elephant there… I realise that my photography sinks a few notches when my family is with me. Perfectly natural I suppose.
Victoria falls from a distance.. Caught on the Canon 6d mark ii with 16-35 2.8 lens.. To say that the falls are impressive is an understatement.
This time a little closer – If you look closely we are drenched – it is not raining, this is from the mist of the falls. The bridge has a river of mist flowing and the entire hillside is like walking through a drowning shower on full blast.
Richard showing off how wet he is from the Victoria falls mist.
Alexander yells out at me “daddy look, take some pictures I’m going to pose…”
Looks perfectly safe.. ….. Zambia!
The minimum wage in Zambia is about 100 usd a month. While this won’t get you more than barely a candy bar in Sweden, in Zambia it’s enough to eat three meals a day on, have a home and cell phone. It’s not luxury, but it’s not death by starvation.
Walking down the street in livingstone
backpackingblogcamping

2019 a year in travel – What to bring?!??

2019 is going to be a fun year! Starting off with a few weeks in Vietnam, than followed up with 6 months in Zambia! We will be traveling, exploring and above all else living a new life with our adopted child. I am really looking forward to this time to just focus on family and Backpackinglight. I will be backpacking as much as possible in Zambia, but hopefully I can get my family out with me. With that said, this also creates a lot of logistical problems for me and for the family. Being a minimalist in a lot of aspects, especially in travel, I now have a problem. I can’t exactly live in Africa with only one backpack with me. There are now a lot of different aspects I have to plan for.

  1. Living a day to day life
  2. Running my business
  3. Travelling and photography
  4. Backpacking
  5. Videography

These different hobbies and aspects don’t fit in one minimalist Minaal travel backpack… unfortunately. While I can normally have everything I need for any amount of time travelling in one backpack including camera gear. The length and goal of this trip to Zambia means that I also need to bring backpacking gear to test and take videos of. It is not possible for me to buy the gear and have it sent to me in Zambia as it is too expensive, and too many possible problems.

Projects during the trip: 

  1. Photography book – Zambia in pictures. Daily life and turists
  2. Vlog – Daily short stories of some kind

The part of planning here that is easy are the first two:

  1. living day to day: I would need my computer, clothing, running clothes and shoes.
  2. Running my business: Easy enough – my computer and bank cards

The harder part in the planning is the last two for different reasons:

  1. Travelling and photography
  2. Backpacking and hiking
  3. Videography

I will start with travelling and photography – Is there one camera that can be great for video and stills? Vlogging and documentary style video? Sharp pictures for everything from street photography to Astrophotography? Am I willing to bring a lot of weight? so probably a lightweight camera that does everything.. does it exist? I currently own a Canon m50 that I kind of bought to hold me over until I could find the perfect camera for myself. I have had and tested tons of different cameras and like the ease of use, autofocus and colors of the M50. I actually sold my Fuji X-t2 for an Olympus Omd EM5 ii.. A great camera, but not the greatest video – this could be said for both the fuji x-t2 and EM5, But I fell in love with the flip out screen of the Olympus. The Fuji had great stills but not the greatest for video as autofocus was weak. Maybe the XT3 is ready for a new chance? The M50 is great, but, the dynamic range is not great, it’s not weather sealed and high ISO is non-existent.

So for me to figure out what I need and what I want and hopefully find a good camera for that. I will write down my list here

Needs: 

  1. Good out of camera video colors – I don’t edit colors much or at all
  2. Good stills – sharp and with decent dynamic range.
  3. Weather sealed – I am in the elements a lot – I don’t bring the m50 because of this
  4. A flip out screen (maybe not the biggest need.. but close to it)
  5. Slow mo up to 60 FPs – but I won’t complain with a 120FPS
  6. Mic input
  7. good, fast Autofocus – As I normally film myself autofocus has to be good
  8. Great battery life
  9. Good depth of field – I like blurry backgrounds

Wants:

  1. I want my camera to look damn good (I see you Olympus OM-D 1 mark II)
  2. Lightweight if possible
  3. 4k.. maybe, I suppose it would be useful.. maybe.. not much of a want or need really
  4. A great wide angle lens

Cameras I am currently looking at: 

Canon 6d mark ii – Ticks a lot of the needs, but HEAVY when you count in the glass as well. A bonus here is that I can use my glass on both the M50 and the 6D. The biggest problem I have with the 6D is the company that makes them.. I don’t want to support a lazy, uninspired company. Canon is just pathetic in a lot of ways and giving them my money just doesn’t feel right.

Fuji X-T3 – Ticks also a lot of the boxes for me – though no flip out screen and Autofocus? hmm not sure. Also I really liked my X-T1 back in the day.. Though I do like the company and cameras

Olympus OM-D E 1 mark II – Looks great, ticks a lot of my wants and needs.. but maybe not the greatest depth of field.. not to be underestimated of course, but can’t compare to full frame.

Canon EOS- R – Another uninspiring effort from the company of mediocracy. But light, good colors, Full frame and flip out screen

Nikon Z6 – Because if I’m dreaming I might as well dream of them all..

Last but not least – sell all of it and but a small compact camera like the Sony rx 100.. Nobody cares about the gear anyway.. it’s about the content 🙂

Backpacking gear

This is where things get a little interesting. While I won’t have time to take week long trips solo, I do have plans to bring the whole family on different trips throughout the country, car camping and maybe even campground camping. But I do want the option to pick up and go backpacking by myself. So the question here is do I bring two tents – one two or three man tent that my wife and kids can sleep in and a solo tent for me. (I don’t like sharing a tent anyway). Or do I bring a big tent that is lightweight to use as a solo tent as well? This same reasoning basically needs to be applied to everything.

So if I’m looking at tents – do I bring something like the The Tarptent saddle, Big agnes Copper spur 3 and a solo tent to match like a Plexamid or Stratospire. Or do I just bring the Hyperlite mountain gear Ultamid 4 with inner-tent? I’m leaning towards the Ultamid as that keeps everything simple, but I really don’t like sharing a tent…

Quilts, sleeping bags, kitchen sets, hiking gear, backpacks so on and so forth.. Am I trying to combine too many hobbies into one trip? Even if we are gone for six months, maybe the better option is a camper van with day hiking gear instead?

As I’ve said.. this really is a pain in the ass.. But I think I answered the question by writing this.. Solo gear, as light as possible and car camping otherwise.

Vlogging? 

This goes back to my video and camera gear – I am thinking about doing a vlog for during my trip in Zambia. The question is what will it be about? I don’t like reality TV, or Reality vlogs and so on, and I would never want to force my life upon other people in that manner. There needs to be a story, a reason to watch, fun and interesting. I don’t want to only do gear reviews. I want to capture life in an interesting way.

backpackingblogcampingLandscape photographyPhotography

Pictures from Borgarfjäll

I recently had an outing with a few friends here in northern Sweden up in the Borgarfjäll mountains, about 350 kilometers inland from Umeå. This was the very reason I moved back to Northern Sweden: To get to the mountains! This was a fun trip, and more in line with car camping perhaps than a rough tumble through the wilds of Sweden, but I had fun non-the less.. In fact, there is something to be said about parking the car outside a mountain top, summiting, sleeping over, fishing and coming back down again. I was out a total of two nights and it was well worth the drive.

This trip also gave me the chance to test my Sierra designs Cloud sleeping bag/quilt and using my Samsung 9+ for all video and photography before taking my planned longer fall trips. Video coming eventually…..

20180914_182655

The view from Buarkantjahke at about 700 meters

20180914_182701

20180914_193452

A lot can be said about the Zpacks Duplex – but there are two that define it most: Light and Cold. What you gain in weight, you sacrifice in size and “tightness”. This is a payoff usually worth the cost, but in cold, fall conditions the Duplex should be changed out for tents better situated for these conditions.

20180915_090506.jpg

The Zpacks and Hilleberg Allak side by side.. both did just fine in the mountains – though the Allak weighs about 2kg more.

20180915_103302

My favorite pack: the Hyperlite mountain gear windrider 2400. A great combination or weight, robustness, usability and looks.

20180915_104058

Me

20180915_10430220180915_110830

David finding loads of chanterelle mushrooms – we filled up several plastic bags with mushrooms.

20180915_133429

The view by Saxån overlooking Buarkantjahke mountain. 1235 meter peak and were we camped the night before at around 900meters.

20180915_183950

On the way back from Borgafjäll I walked a few kilometers along Lögdeälven and camped right by the water

20180915_19113420180916_092055

Down by Öreälven

blogLandscape photographyPhotographysarek

Sarek i Bilder (in pictures) – Part 1

My schedule is filled at the moment while trying to get Backpackinglight.se up and running. So instead of a long trail report, I will post some pictures! More pictures coming soon.

DSC06408
Mukka Stugan is a small little emergency cottage that while offers a nice place to eat lunch while it’s raining, has unfortuantely become a trash can for hikers who can’t be bothered to bring their trash with them.

DSC06344

The Trailstar by the glacier river.

DSC06368
13 kilos for a 9 day trip – fully safe and secure with a fishing pole and satellite phone to boot. My packing is watertight, I’m set for far below zero temperatures if needed.

DSC06267DSC06388DSC06411DSC06541

Dinner!

DSC06478
Taking a coffee and candy break while drying out my shoes.

DSC06492
It looks like hell, but believe me, this is some of the best aspects of wearing trailshoes in the wild. When my feet get hot I can just go trudging through some cold water. No blisters, no pain, no problems! Trailshoes are a luxury few have yet discovered.

DSC06515

Down by Rapadalen – Amazing

DSC06546
If only Ron would let me sell his MLD gear! The yellow trailstar is probably the single most beautiful tent build today. An incredibly light and well performing piece of kit.

DSC06882
My Fizan poles and HMG windrider 4400 after a week in Sarek. Both performed incredibly well – so good in fact that I will be supplying both at backpackinglight.se. These are simply the best products available for their intended purpose.

backpackingblogGear listPhotographyultralight backpacking

My camera gear for Sarek 2017

I find that I absolutely love video diaries of backpacking.. I have been following and watching them for years on YouTube, but I never really got around to doing it myself. I’ve tried a few times on a smaller scale, but never any real effort. My YouTube channel I don’t even bother marketing and in general I’m not very active on there. I’m not sure why this is to be honest, i guess I just couldn’t figure out how to make it work in practice while holding onto my ultralight philosophy. As well as being stuck on just doing gear reviews, which honestly, is a chore. On top of that I’m not really a computer guy – I don’t like editing video or photography and making an interesting video out of hours and hours of footage is no easy task.

With that said, because I love the format of video documentaries, I am going to start working on it more and more. I am changing up my camera gear for my upcoming trips along the High coast trail in northern Sweden and my two weeks through Sarek journey. My strategy is simple: Record everything! I found out the hard way that it’s damn difficult to make an interesting movie with limited footage. I have been editing my Iceland video now and realize that I hardly recorded anything at all, so as an embarrassment to myself and to the suffrage of everyone watching my videos, I do a 2 minute intro where I’m just describing what was happening… In any case, it kind of works, but would have been better to show instead of tell.

A link to the video: Alone in Iceland part 1.

This means that my Fujifilm x-t2 camera and lenses have been sold to make room for video gear and after my Iceland trip, I’m convinced a pocket camera works wonders for what I do. So some of the gear that my Fujifilm x-t2 has financed so far are as follows:

Gopro hero 3 black edition with accessories – used cost about 150USD (200 grams)
Ricoh GR – An excellent digital compact camera that I absolutely love 200USD (245 grams)

ricoh-gr-front
I used the Sony RX100 in Iceland, however I find the Ricoh GR to be a completely different beast altogether with regards to picture quality

DJI Spark drone and controller with two extra batteries 1000USD (550 grams complete)

dji-spark-white-hover
The DJI Spark is a tiny drone with serious power

To top it all off I have two 20100mhv battery packs to keep everything charged along the way.

I’ve sold all my Fuji gear for around 2400USD

Total weight for my new photography and video gear = 1095grams
Total weight of Fujifilm x-t2 with lenses and batteries = 1114grams

Weight of battery packs 490grams each (added one for the drone)

Total weight increase for new system: 300grams

Total money savings: around 1000usd

I can live with a total weight increase of 300grams for so much more flexibility and control. The Ricoh GR works fantastic for me as almost all my photography in the wild is at 28mm, no matter what lenses and cameras I have with me – my shots are always wide. and now I have true video capabilities.

Concerns about drones: I got some feedback with regards to bringing a drone with me or drones in general. It seems to be a very hot topic in the USA and something I hadn’t thought about before as drones have never bothered me personally. I will call it the “road rage syndrome”, there are people who have an incredible amount of pent up rage and are looking for something to go bezerk over and I have to take this into consideration when flying the spark.

To the advantage of the spark it is tiny, unobtrusive and quiet. With that said I think drones should fall somewhere between loud music in camp and deficating on the trail.  Neither of these should be practiced, and with proper fore thought and consideration for others, can easily be avoided.

My strategy for succeeding with video:
Record everything! Better to record days and days of video and edit down to a highly interesting 30 minute clip, than to take minimal video and try and stretch it out.

I also need to work on my editing skills. I don’t like working on computers that much, so I will have to find presets and styles that I like so I can get my editing done quickly. I also know what kind of footage I like – So I will try to emulate this.

Where it could possibly fail:
I like to keep things simple, sometimes it’s a hassle to record. To always have to think about the shot. To pull out a drone and start recording takes me out of the moment. hopefully I can overcome this, as I find I really love the video format, and I love watching my old videos of all the hikes I’ve done. (sadly I have barely edited any of them… so nothing is on youtube yet)

 

 

 

 

 

GearPhoto reviewsPhotography

My favorite backpacking cameras

Through the years I have used many cameras on the trail, and several of them I have written reviews on. I thought for fun I would include a few pictures and a few of my favorites here. I know what your thinking, it’s not the gear that makes the photographer, and it’s absolutely correct, but it sure does help to have quality gear that inspires. You will notice I don’t put any importance on year the camera was made, I do this because I don’t really care. I love the Sony rx100, is it as good as the rx100 m4? probably not, but I wouldn’t know as I haven’t owned the m4. I have owned the m3 and I thought it too was an excellent backpacking camera. Anyway, here are my personal favorites:

 

Fujifilm X-T1

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

It’s hard not to love this camera. It takes amazing pictures, the XF lenses are the best lenses on the market, and to top it off because of the release of the X-T2, the X-T1’s are relatively cheap now. The fujifilm with the 18-55 kit lens is a fantastic backpacking combination that weighs around 800 grams total.  16mp sensor.

 

Fujifilm X100s

$_32

Super crisp pictures and a set focal length of 35mm. What’s not to like. Missing the classic chrome film simulation mode and not really the best for video. However, an excellent backpacking camera. weighs 430 grams and 16mp sensor.

 

Sony RX100

121031_sonycybershot_003-660x440

Small, light and excellent sensor. I used the sony RX 100 on my solo trip in Iceland and don’t regret a thing. Perhaps not the best quality when compared to Fuji, but still an excellent all around compact camera. 245 grams and 28-100mm lens and 20mp sensor. These can now be purchased relatively cheap on the classifieds.

 

Sony RX100 m3

Z-SONY-RX100M3-FL-EVF-FLASH-L

Everything I love about the sony RX100 the M3 does better. The lens is criper, the files are cleaner, the sensor is better and the Sony RX 100 M3 even has a built in viewfinder and HD video. Only negative? 24-70mm lens is perhaps less flexible than the 28-100 on the Rx 100.

 

Ricoh GR

ZYFRONT-LG

Small, light, excellent pictures and sensor… what’s not to like? Some people don’t like single focal length cameras, personally they are my favorite. I hate having to think about what lens might work best for a certain situation. Why bother? The 28mm lens on the Ricoh GR is one of the best on the market. Excellent for both backpacking and street photography. The Ricoh GR weighs 245 grams with battery and has a 16mp sensor.

 

Fujifilm X-T2

IMG_7566-acr

The Fufilm X-T2 is no simple upgrade. It’s basically a completely new camera as compared to the X-T2. Sensor upgrade to a new Xtrans 24megapixel, two memory cards, autobracket for HDR and 4K video to name just a few of the upgrades. The downside of course being that a X-T2 will cost you twice as much as the X-T1 at the moment. But like all the Fujifilm cameras, the X-T2 is probably the best mirrorless camera on the market and easily competes with most full frames. The weight is similar to the X-T1 at 450 grams with battery.

 

Runner up:
Sony A7R

Small body, clunky lenses and massive files that takes days to transfer to computer.. Excellent picture quality but a bore to use. Some of my best pictures have been taken with the A7R, but I can’t recommend the camera as for every one excellent picture 10 are bad. Why? because the shutter causes vibrations in the photo making sharp pictures handheld very difficult.

backpackingblogDestinationsLandscape photographylaugavegur

Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 4

Emstrur (Botnar) to Þórsmörk

— 15 km, estimated walking time 6-7 hrs, 300m net descent —

dsc07873

Again, I was left breathless by the amazing hike. Glaciers, desert, rivers, mountains and forest all within a 15 kilometer hike. This day starts off in the canyon of Syðri – Emstruá. Here there is a steep path that leads a bridge that runs over the glacier river.

dsc07895

There is something epic about a raging river being fed with a glacier.. simply amazing. I sat here for sometime and ate my breakfast and just enjoyed the incredible view, engrossing my soul completely in the moment.

dsc07894

I learned along this trail that it was time to replace my beloved Haglöfs LIM trail shoes. I decided from this moment on that I would wear trail shoes that had toe protection and better grip. On top of that I realized that I’m not really into video production.. I shot hours and hours of video along this trail and so far haven’t edited anything.. I prefer working with photography.

dsc07910-pano

After this long trek along the sandy, volcanic ash desert everything changes to a kind of mini forest.

dsc07932

dsc07949

This little house just seemed lost in the wilderness – It was the first house I’d seen for days.

dsc07951

The house from a little further out.

dsc07967

dsc07986

After a long walk came this amazing water crossing along the Þröngá river. As always the water is freezing cold, but barely knee high throughout so wading is no problem.

dsc07992
The little village at the bottom of the valley is Porsmork, while I will be staying in Bazar, I wanted to make the little 8 kilometer detour to Porsmork to drink beer and eat peanuts. It was worth the walk. You can even take the bus back to Reykjavik from Porsmork.

 

From Porsmork I made my way on to Bazar where I would be sleeping for the night.

dsc08015

While this was not Bazar, it was nice nonetheless.. Not really sure what this place was called, but it was nessled between Porsmork and Bazar.

dsc08023

After a quick walk over this glacier river, I soon arrived in Bazar where I would throw up my tent and make camp for the night

Once my tent was setup I made my way to the river, laid down and chilled out for a few hours before heading off to bed. Once again, the Laugavegur trail delivered on it’s incredible views and serene enviroment.

dsc08062

Trail report: the Laugavegur trail day 1
Trail report: the Laugavegur trail day 2
Trail report: the Laugavegur trail day 3
Trail report: the Laugavegur trail day 4
Trail report: the Laugavegur trail day 5

blogDestinationsLandscape photographylaugavegurultralight backpacking

Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 3

Alftavatn to Emstrur (Botnar)

15 km, estimated walking time 6-7 hrs, 40 m net descent

I was in no rush to leave Alftavatn, the views were simply incredible and it was nice to just hang out for a while. I knew that walking through this valley would be an amazing adventure, and with that, I laced up my trail runners and made my way towards Emstrur.

dsc07717

From the very start on the way to Emstrur, this incredible view is what I was met with. The hike from Alftavatn to Emstrur is by far the most picturesque of all the sections. From this kinds of green rolling landscapes, into long deserts of volcanic ash and a massive glacier looming in the distance like a constant reminder of the true wild that you are in.
This hike felt long, maybe it was the deep ash or the several large river crossings.. who knows, the hike is easy, but feels much longer than the 15km that it actually is.

dsc07722

The first real water crossing is about 3-4 kilometers from Alftavatn. Here I passed a whole group of heavy-miserables while they stopped to take of their boots and socks 🙂 I just trugded through, admittedly the water was cold but I warmed up quickly.

dsc07736

Here the trail takes us over the low ridge Brattháls into Hvanngil. If your looking to book a room in advance in Alftavatn and it’s fully booked (not unlikely). Check out Hvanngil, as it’s not always a known campground.

dsc07752

The first real river crossing is made on this part of the trail. It’s wide and irratic, you will have to walk around a while along the river Blafjallakvisl until you find a very wide part, and there crossing shouldn’t be a problem. You will notice however I stopped on a little sandbank in the river. I didn’t actually stop here to take a pic, to be honest I stopped here because my feet felt frozen solid from the ice cold water..

dsc07777

To say that the views along this part of the trail are amazing is an understatement. While I always find nature to be awe-inspiring, this particular part of the trail was something altogether different. I had the feeling of walking along the art gallery of god – his best pieces of art all laid out along a 15 mile trek. I took my time here, stopped often and forgot about everything else in the world, nothing mattered, I was lost in the moment and it was one of the greatest moments of my life.

dsc07787

dsc07788

dsc07798

After a while we come along the river Nyrðri Emstruá, which thankfully is bridged.. From here it’s only a few kilometers left before reaching the campground at Botnar.

dsc07773

 

DSC07809

After an incredible walk we come in towards Botnar which resides in the Markarfljótsgljúfur canyon with the glacier in the background.

dsc07818

The campground in Botnar is well protected from the heavy winds blowing down from the glacier. The views are incredible here and there is even a little shop here if you need some resuplies. 3G works perfectly fine along all the campgrounds throughout the Laugavegur trail – so calling home wont be a problem.

 

Trip report: laugavegur trail day 1
Trip report: laugavegur trail day 2
Trip report: laugavegur trail day 3
Trip report: laugavegur trail day 4
Trip report: laugavegur trail day 5

DestinationsLandscape photographylaugavegurPhotographyTrip report

Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 2

When volcanic desert transforms into a true paradise on earth

Hrafntinnusker to Álftavatn – 12 kilometer from volcano to paradise

DSC07449.jpg

After a day and a half of hiking in rain and cold, finally some sunshine and water. I stopped here and filled up my water bottle, ate an energy bar and called home. This really lifted my spirits.

After what felt like an eternity of walking in rain and snow, after volcanic ash, rock and gravel. A long sleepless night in an unprotected snowy volcanic wasteland.

dsc07467

The Laugavegagur trail transformed itself into a true paradise on earth when I came up over the ridge and looked out upon Alftavatn.

dsc07478-pano

Alftavatn is where most pictures you see of the trail come from, and in the next section you will see why. However to get there you have to walk along a desert wasteland for almost the entirety of the 12 kilometers from Hraftinnusker.

dsc07497
My journey to Alftavatn started after a cold night of “sleep”. On top of that I of course only use trail running shoes. While this is normally never a problem, on this one occasion my feet where frozen until I got my temperature up as the first 5 kilometers of the trail was covered in mushy snow.

dsc07528
It took me about 6 hours to get to Alftavatn from Hraftinnusker, lets just say I was in no hurry at all. While it was cold, wet and at times just all around shitty, I actually enjoyed this part of the trail immensely; granted, more now when I’m sitting at home writing this book.

dsc07601

While the campground looked lovely, I opted for the cabin.. there was actually an available bed! The room here will cost about $50.00.. to me it was worth it that night.

dsc07543

Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 1
Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 2
Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 3
Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 4
Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 5

backpackingblogLandscape photographylaugavegurPhotography

The Laugavegur trail day 1

Sometimes it takes me a while to finally get around to doing a trip report. I am working on this as an ebook instead as I can really get the pictures and album to flow better, but I will post the separate days here nonetheless.

This will be a full trip report and information guide for anybody wanting to do the trip themselves. This trip report is divided into 5 days simply because of the diversity and vassness of this trail I simply couldn’t fit it all into one post.

The Adventure begins

I had booked my flight a few months in advance to Reykjavik from Stockholm. The total flight cost around $350 round trip and the light takes about 3 hours. So, in other words Iceland is an obvious choice for most Swedes. I Arrived at Reykjavik international airport and immidiately outside the little airport I found my bus to Reykjavik city center.

dsc07392-2

Once at the city center I took a little walk into Reykjavik center ate a burger, bought a map and some gas for my laugavegur trail hike. There is a gas station about 100 meters away from the bus station where all these supplies can be bought. My bus would be leaving at 13.00 so I had a few hours to spare before heading off to the trail start.

I arrived in Reykjavik at around 10.00 a.m. Finding my way around the airport was a rather straight forward process as there really is only two busses to chose from. I bought my ticket at the BSI desk to the BSI terminal in Reykjavik. After about a 40 minute ride I found myself at the main buss terminal. From here it was just a simple manner of purchasing the “hikers pass” which would get me to either the start in the north at Landmannalaugar or in the south at Porsmork or Skogar and back to Reykjavik.

I decided I really wanted to start north and head south, seemed like a fun way to go to end my journey at the ocean. I’m glad I did as I found the first days along Landamannalaugar and Hrafntinnusker to be rather bleak with the rain and snow.

dsc07397
The Bus ride from Reykjavik takes about 3 and a half hours and I would definitely not recommend trying to hitch hike to the start as there it is literally out in the middle of nowhere. Nobody drives that trail unless they are hiking – and that is mainly just the buses. When I arrived in Landmannalaugar it was rainy and cold. Everyone was bunched into the toilets trying to figure out what they want to do.. Walk or pitch their tents. I also had a difficult time deciding as it was raining like crazy and it was by this time 4 p.m in the afternoon. However, as I had been sitting since my flight left Stockholm, my ass and back were hurting so I opted to walk.

The Hike from Landmannalaugar to Hrafntinnusker is about 12km and takes around 4-5 hours to walk. While it was late, I really just needed to walk. This part of the trail was marked by snow, rain and steaming volcanic hills. Landmannalaugar is the only part along the trail where you can swim in the hot springs. I probably should have stayed, but I couldn’t be bothered to sit still any longer.

And so, I made my way to look over the hotsprings, looked at all the hikers huddled in the toilets, waved and made my way.

dsc07401

Landmannalaugar to Hrafntinnusker

12 kilometers – takes about 4-5 hours to walk

This part of the trail from Landmannalaugar to Hrafntinnusker was cold and wet the whole way. I was happy for it to be done. When I do this trail again it will be in August and not June, the trial in June is very wet, snowy and sometimes this means we just want to get through it all instead of taking time to enjoy every second.

dsc07403

The first day was wet, cold and rainy with dashes of snow. With that said, the beauty was there.

dsc07413

There was quite a few people stopping me along this part of the trail asking “how far is camp..” I seemed to be the only one heading south!

DSC07417.jpg

The warmth of the volcano underneath kept the ground nice and toasty.

dsc07421

dsc07442

By the end of this first day I had reached my limits. A long night before when I didn’t get any sleep, a flight, a long bus ride, never ending rain and cold. I was so tired that I didn’t bother taking pictures from that first camp at Hrafntinnusker. In my opinion the campsite wasn’t the best as it was surrounded by snow and no wind protection. I really wanted a warm bed in the cabin, but alas it was fully booked.

dsc07444

Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 1
Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 2
Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 3
Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 4
Trip report: The Laugavegur trail day 5