According to legend, Grímsey was formed when three night trolls tried to separate the West Fjords from the rest of Iceland by digging a channel from Húnaflói bay all the way to Breiðafjörður. As the sun rose, the trolls in the west ran east but were turned to stone in Kollafjörður, whereas the troll in the north jumped over Streingrímsfjörður, landing on a rocky peninsula where she had left her ox. In anger she threw down her shovel, breaking off part of the cliff and creating Grímsey. Locals maintain she, too, was turned to stone, and indeed, a tall rockstack known as Kerling (The Old Woman) stands down by the sea between the swimming pool and Malarhorn cottage, looking out at her island and ox.

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