Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Dynjandi Waterfall (Westfjords, Iceland)

After our stay in Flókalundur, we drove up the west coast to Ísafjörður. On our way, we passed by this roadside sculpture.  I don't know what it is meant to represent, but I found it intriguing.

The clouds came down to touch the mountains as we drove north.

We drove through the clouds high on a mountain road . . . it looks like the world ends just beyond that bit of road.

Our next stop was the Dynjandi waterfall, which was my favorite of the waterfalls we saw in Iceland. It was beautiful, with lots of lovely falls and a nice hike up to the top.

We were able to get quite close to the falls. It was refreshing to be able to interact with its natural beauty without the various barriers I'm used to in the natural tourist attractions in the United States.

We could get *really* close to the falls -- if you look carefully, you can see Q in the lower right corner, right next to the water.

There were also a number of interesting plants along the hike up to the top of the waterfall.  These little puffballs were all over Iceland, creating drifts of white in the fields.  Apparently, this is Eriophorum scheuchzeri (Scheuchzer's cottongrass).

Look at all the different colors of lichen and moss on this rock!

The Icelandic plants are fragile, and tourists trampling on them can damage the ecosystem. These signs and rope barriers protected the native flora from those of us hiking up the Dynjandi waterfall.

We made it to the top! Q noted that the sound of the waterfall was not constant, but varied and included a number of different sounds, depending on the flow of the water.

Gorgeously vibrant green moss lushly textured the rocks next to the main falls.

There was an intriguing vein of red rock at the top of the falls. Ah, if only a geologist had been handy to explain it to us!

After hiking back down, we walked out to the shore and watched the Arctic terns fly over the fjord and perch on the rocks.

At some point during the hike down from the top of the Dynjandi waterfall, Q managed to zip his hoodie and rain slicker together. Upon discovering it, he said that he had inadvertently invented the world's first spiral garment.  "Now if I could zip the right side of the rain slicker to the left side of the hoodie, I'd be a Moebius strip!"

Next up: Ísafjörður

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