In the Shadow of Vatnajökull - IMG49

Deep canyons, green valleys, incredible cliffs and snow-clad peaks

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Hiking and Trekking Special Offer

Book before December 18th 2017 and save

8.000 ISK
We loved the scenery and the physical challenge of this trip but the knowledge, care, sense of humor, and evident delight of our guide, made it even more so. She made us feel safe and did an amazing job of unifying us as a group.

- Olivette and Eric, United States -

Tour type: Trek from from hut to hut without luggage transport




Price from:  


Adult: 137000

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What's included: Guiding, transport, accommodation including sleeping bags, and full board

Duration: 4 days, 3 nights

Accommodation: Mountain huts

Meeting point: Egilstaðir domestic airport at 08:30 or Reykjavik domestic airport at 06:45 if flight is added

Group size: 6 to 15 participants

Language: English, German and French

Walking per day: 6-8 hours

Note: This tour can be booked for private groups upon request.

  • Tour Description

    Highlights of the Tour

    • The remote areas
    • The stunning view
    • The colorful rhyolite mountains

    East Iceland Trekking

    East Iceland Trekking are tours that combine some of the best hiking and sights of east and southeast Iceland. They are made up of three parts that each has its own characteristics and charm. They all have in common stunning landscapes and variety in color. You will hike over green hills and between small coves, venture into one of Iceland ‘s most remote wildernesses and visit a world of glaciers and ice. With the three different parts, you may choose one section of the trek, combine two or three parts, or hike the whole East Iceland Trekking tour from the deserted farmland of the eastern coves, through the wilderness east of Vatnajökull glacier and to Skaftafell.

    Lightweight Backpacking Tour in the Lónsöræfi Nature Reserve

    Lónsöræfi is one of the most remote hiking areas in Iceland and offers the unique experience of the rugged landscapes to the east of Europe's largest glacier,Vatnajökull. The glacier makes sure you take notice of its power as it leaves its mark on everything, including a moraine, a lagoon, and a riverbed. The abundance of colors which are characteristic of the rhyolitic rocks, contrast to the basaltic formations offering a real feast for the eyes and minds. Reindeer, wary of humans, roam freely in this remote ruggedness. Here we walk through an unbelievable variety of landscapes; deep canyons, green valleys, incredible cliffs and snow speckled peaks gently kissing the sky. Although our hiking can get somewhat challenging, our comfort isn't compromised as well equipped mountain huts guarantee a certain comfortability on this tour. Along with sleeping bags or blankets, Icelandic Mountain Guides provides partially stocked supplies in these huts, limiting the weight each person has to carry to 7 to 10 kg (15 to 20 lbs). Because of this lightweight backpacking, this more related to a trekking trip than a backpacking trip. An extraordinarily beautiful trek in a fantastic area.

    • Total walking distance: 50 km. (33 miles)
    • Altitude: 100-800 m. (330-2600 feet)
    • Maximum Ascent: 250 m. (820 feet)
    • Minimum age:16 years

    Included : Experienced and qualified guide for 4 days, transport to and from trekking area, mountain hut fees including sleeping bags, food from lunch day 1 to lunch day 4,

    • The tour starts in Egilsstaðir and ends in Höfn, flights from and to Reykjavík can be added. 
    • All  the huts are heated, They have dormitories with single and twin bunkbeds and/or mattresses and participants must be prepared to share a bunk with other travelers from the group.
    • Accommodation in Reykjavik and pick up and drop off at accommodation can be added. 
    • Sleeping bag can be rented for 7000 ISK

    This lightweight backpack tour can be linked with the trek "Hiking at the End of the World IMG34".

    Note: Worried about your environmental footprint? Through our Environmental Fund, you are helping to preserve the beautiful Icelandic nature along this trail.

  • Tour Itinerary

    Day 1:  (Reykjavík) – Egilsstaðir – Geldingafell
    We meet at the domestic airport in Egilsstaðir. There those who came the land way meet those who came by air from Reykjavík (depart from Reykjavík domestic airport at 7:30). After getting acquainted we transfer into the Eyjabakkar area located east of Mt. Snæfell which is where we start our hike. We begin our first day following Eyjabakkar and the immpressive riverbanks of the glacier river Jökulsá. Mt. Snæfell poses majestically on the other side of the river, occasionally with a bright blanket of snow capping its peaks. We then turn east towards Geldingafell mountain at the edge of the great Vatnajökull glacier and the lush vegetation of the riverbanks gives way to the rough areas shaped by the receding glacier where the reindeer roam freely. Accommodation in a fully equipped hut provided.
    Distance: 15km (9.5mi)    Walking time: 6-8 hrs    Ascent: 150 m (490')

    Day 2:  Geldingafell – Egilssel
    Today we hike over the mountain of Geldingafell for excellent views over the Vatnajökull glacier as well as the outlet glaciers of the area and adjacent glacier lagoons. We follow the top of the valley of Vesturdalur before descending down to lake Kollumúlavatn where pintails can often be heard and even seen. Accommodation in a fully equipped hut, Egilssel, on the lake.
    Distance: 15km (9.5mi)    Walking time: 6-8 hrs    Ascent/Descent: 300 m (980')/500m (1640’)

    Day 3:  Egilssel – Múlaskáli

    Circling the lake we come to the Tröllakrókahnaus, an interesting outcrop of columnar basalt, located on the impressive Tröllakrókar cliffs. Making our way along the cliffs´ edges we enjoy the stunning views of the rock formations as well as the views to the surrounding mountains. The monotony of the basaltic landscapes soon gives way to the colorful landscapes of the rhyolite where the purple, orange and even pink colors come as a real surprise. We continue down into the valley of the glacial river Jökulsá í Lóni arriving at our hut for the night.
    Distance: 12km (7.5mi)    Walking time: 5-7 hrs    Ascent/Descent: 200m (650')/450m (1450’)

    Day 4:  Múlaskáli – Eskifell – Hornafjörður – (Reykjavík)
    We start by crossing the glacial river on a footbridge before climbing the hill of Illikambur. We should enjoy the colors of the surrounding slopes on our way up as on top yet another landscape awaits us. Following the glacial river Jökulsá í Lóni we make our way south to the old farmstead of Eskifell. Just after we cross the mighty glacial river on a footbridge, a bus awaits us to bring us to Höfn.
    Note that accommodation in Höfn is not included but can be added for extra cost (depending on availability).

    Distance: 11km (7.0 mi)    Walking time: 6-8 hrs    Ascent/Descent: 250 m (820')/300m (980’)

  • Equipment List

    The Shadow of Vatnajökull Trekking / backpacking tour

    -Equipment list for In the Shadow of Vatnajökull - IMG49

    For your own wellbeing and safety we strongly suggest following the advice of our equipment list, this includes having good quality rain-gear, tops and bottoms! Also respect that cotton clothing is not appropriate for any strenuous outdoor activity – this includes jeans and t-shirts. Modern outdoor clothing is by far more comfortable and will greatly improve your experience. 

    Boots and Clothing:

    • Sturdy Hiking Boots – waterproof with ankle support. 
    • Long sleeve shirt (thermal underwear) – Wool or synthetic. 
    • T-shirt (thermal underwear) – Wool or synthetic. 
    • Light wool or fleece sweater (2nd layer).
    • Trousers – Strong, light and quick drying e.g. soft-shell. 
    • Jacket with a good hood – windproof, waterproof and breathable. 
    • Rain trousers – windproof, waterproof and breathable. Please note that full raingear is mandatory in Iceland. 
    • Light Gloves – Wool or synthetic. 
    • Socks – Wool or synthetic. Two or three pairs. 
    • Warm hat – Wool or synthetic. 
    • Puffy jacket (e.g. Primaloft or down).

    Other gear:

    • Backpack – 40-60 liters / 2500 - 3700 cu in – you will need about 5 - 10L  free for fresh foods.
    • River shoes – Walking sandals or old running shoes with a good grip are a good choice, along with a pair of warm socks or neoprene socks. Open sandals or flip-flops will not do the job. 
    • Towel – light and packable. 
    • Camera, spare batteries and a memory card. 
    • Sunglasses & sun protection. 
    • Water container – thermos flask or water bottle 0,5 – 1L. 
    • Headlamp for reading and getting around the hut. 
    • Personal first aid kit – including blister care. 
    • Prescription medication and other personal health items. 
    • Toiletries; Toothbrush, toothpaste, earplugs and etc.
    • Change of clothes for wearing in the huts. 
    • Dry-bags for electronics and extra clothing. 
    • Liner bag – sleeping bags are in the huts (IMG 49 only).

    Optional gear:

    • Walking pole(s).
    • Gaiters
    • Neoprene socks – highly recommended for river crossings. 
    • Pen knife. 
    • Sun/rain Hat or a Cap. 
    • Shorts
    • Thermal mat (for lunch breaks). 
    • Heart-warming spirits.

    Should you have any questions regarding this equipment list or the equipment on our tours feel free to contact

    Our Gear Lexicon for trekking tours has more information on gear. Please note that IMG 49 does not have baggage transport like other IMG Trekking tours. All gear and extra clothing is carried from hut to hut. The huts have been supplied with storable food and sleeping bags. Only limited fresh items need to be carried. 

  • Gear Lexicon

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  • FAQ


    IMG49 In the Shadow of Vatnajökull

    Do I need to bring my sleeping bag for this tour?

    • No, sleeping bags are provided but passengers are advised to bring sleeping bag liners.

    Can Icelandic Mountain Guides accommodate dietary requirements due to allergy or religious reasons?

    • Yes, we can accommodate such requirements. We can also accommodate vegetarian dietary requirements.
    • It costs a little extra – 1.500 ISK pr. day.

    Meeting point and time

    • Flights included: Meeting point is at the Reykjavík domestic airport at 6:45 am.
    • Flights not included: Meeting point is at the Egilsstaðir domestic airport at 8:30 am and the end point is the airport in Höfn í Hornafirði.

    Can I purchase domestic flights without booking them through you?

    • Yes, it is possible. You can purchase the flight to Egilsstaðir through Air Iceland and the flight from Höfn í Hornafirði through Eagle air. Please contact us for flight times.

    How much should my backpack weigh, all gear included?

    • The huts are partially stocked with supplies, which should limit the weight each person has to carry to 7-10 Kg (15-20 lbs).

    River crossing shoes – what type?

    • The most important thing when choosing shoes for crossing the rivers is to have shoes with good grip since the bottom of the rivers can be very slippery and/or rocky.
    • We recommend passengers to bring either an old pair of sneakers or a pair of sturdy sandals for crossing the rivers. The sneakers don’t dry easily though and can be a heavy addition to your backpack.

    Note: The rivers can be very cold so bring warm socks such as neoprene socks.

    What is included and what is not included in the price?

    • Included: Guide for 4 days, transportation to Eyjabakkar area, food for 4 days (from lunch day 1 to lunch day 4), mountain huts, sleeping bags (passenger are advised to bring sleeping bag liners), mattresses, cooking gear and transportation from foot bridge to Höfn. Domestic flights between Reykjavík and Egilsstaðir and Hofn and Reykjavík can be added.
    • Not included: International flights to and from Iceland, transportation between Keflavík airport and Reykjavík, accommodation before and after the tour, domestic flights.

    What does the pick-up and drop off option include?

    • They only include transfer between your accommodation and the domestic airport in Reykjavík where you start and end your tour.

    Cancellation policy

    • You can read all about our cancellation policy on our website here.

    Do you require a full payment at the time of booking?

    • Yes, we do. It is not possible to pay a deposit or confirmation fee.

    Is it possible to leave extra luggage somewhere back in Reykjavík while on the trip?

    • If you are staying at the same hotel / guesthouse before and after the trek then you can leave your extra luggage there for no extra charge.
    • The BSI Bus terminal can also store your bags for 500 ISK pr. bag pr. day.

    Do all departures have an English speaking guide?

    • Yes, every single one. Selected departures will be offered with an English and German speaking guide.

    If you have any other questions about this tour, you can contact us at

  • Map
  • Video
  • Departure Dates
    Tour Dates Availability Language  
    03.07 - 06.07 2018 Available English/French Select
    17.07 - 20.07 2018 Available English/French Select
    24.07 - 27.07 2018 Available English/German Select
    31.07 - 03.08 2018 Available English/French Select
    14.08 - 17.08 2018 Available English/French Select
    21.08 - 24.08 2018 Available English/German Select
    28.08 - 31.08 2018 Available English/French Select
    04.09 - 07.09 2018 Available English Select

Select the number of passengers and departure date.