Mother and Daughter Hike Across Iceland

Iðunn Bragadóttir, left, and her daughter Þóra Dagný Stefánsdóttir.

Two Icelandic women, Iðunn Bragadóttir and her 20-year-old daughter, Þóra Dagný Stefánsdóttir, have spent 32 days traversing Iceland. The duo started on the Reykjanes peninsula and hiked diagonally, southwest to northeast, across the country to Langanes Point. The 786km route is one of the longest possible ways to traverse Iceland.

The route across Iceland.

Þóra had planned to travel overseas for the summer, but when COVID-19 hit, she came up with a new, particularly vigorous kind of staycation. This was not the first time that the pair have trekked together. Five years ago, they hiked the 800km Way of St. James in Spain.

During the Iceland trek, they walked from 16 to 40km a day, depending on the terrain and weather. “It took us 7 to 12 hours a day,”. said ðunn. “We laughed about it ranging from a regular work day to that of a workaholic.”

To keep their pack weights down, they carried just a few days’ food at a time, and Iðunn’s husband brought them supplies along the way. They spent most nights in mountain huts, only camping when there was no alternative.

Soaking up the modest comforts of a mountain hut after a long trekking day.

The main challenge was the changeable weather, which ranged from glorious sunshine to rain and sleet. On one particularly rainy day, they had to change clothes three times. The hardest section was the Sprengisandur, a high plateau between the Hofsjökull and Vatnajökull glaciers, because of the endless sand dunes and strong winds.


About the Author

Rebecca McPhee

Rebecca is a freelance writer and science teacher based in the UK.

She is a keen traveler and has been lucky enough to backpack her way around Africa, South America, and Asia. With a background in marine biology, she is interested in everything to do with the oceans and aims to dive and open-water swim in as many seas as possible.

Her areas of expertise include open water sports, marine wildlife and adventure travel.

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