Iceland // Southwestern Iceland //

Laugavegur hiking practicalities

The Laugavegur trail is open from early June until the end of August, when buses run daily from Reykjavík to the end points at Landmannalaugar and Þórsmörk.

Ferðafélag Íslands’ huts (t 568 2535, [email protected]) sleep up to seventy people, cost 5000kr a night for sleeping-bag space, have toilets, kitchens and usually showers, and need to be booked well in advance; make sure you carry the receipts to show to hut wardens, as it’s the only way you can prove your booking. Campsites at the huts cost 1000kr, with access to toilets and showers, but not kitchens. Bring everything with you, including food and sleeping bags (you can get water at the huts) and, if camping, a tent, stove and cooking gear.

Weather varies between fair and foul, with gale-force winds a speciality of the region; you need full waterproof gear, warm clothing, solid hiking boots, and some old trainers or surf boots for fording the several frigid rivers. The trail is well pegged, but at the very least you need to carry Landmælingar Íslands’ Þórsmörk-Landmannalaugar map and a compass. Although the overall gradients are the same whichever end you begin, in practice it’s easier from the north, where you spend a whole day gradually reaching the trail’s apex (around 1120m) between Hrafntinnusker and Álftvatn, instead of doing it in one short, brutal ascent from the south.

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