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the Degree Confluence Project
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Iceland

4.1 km (2.5 miles) SSW of Vaðlækir, Árnessýsla, Iceland
Approx. altitude: 105 m (344 ft)
([?] maps: Google MapQuest Multimap world confnav)
Antipode: 64°S 159°E

Accuracy: 5 m (16 ft)
Click on any of the images for the full-sized picture.

#2: Ingolfsfjall (Ingolfs mountain) #3: Border markers going up the gully #4: Looking up the gully #5: Snow drift covered Confluence area #6: GPS #7: Valley panorama #8: Satellite image with track log

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  64°N 21°W (visit #2) (secondary) 

#1: Top of the gully seen from the confluence

(visited by Terje Mathisen)

28-Mar-2003 -- While travelling to Iceland with my wife, we made the 'Great Circle Tour', visiting Thingvalla, Geysir and Gullfoss.

On the way back, highway 35 passes within one km of this previously unvisited confluence, so since the heavy snow and sleet we had at Gullfoss had been replaced by sunny weather, I decided to make an attempt.

Photo #2 shows the area as we approach the Ingolfsfjall mountain, the confluence is on top, just over the lip of the escarpment. With 350 m vertical elevation between the road and the top, this would be tough!

I left Tone in the car and started jogging up the hillside, which soon became far too steep to keep this up! I then walked up the hill, going slightly to the north of the direct line, since this would give me access to a gully that seemed to lead up to the top.

When I had about 350 (horizontal) meters left to the point, the gully was getting really steep, and I doubted that it would be possible. OTOH, the visitors who made the first attempt last year did state that they made it to within 120 m of the point, and since I'm a rock climber I really didn't feel like turning around before I made it at least to their high point.

As I got closer to the top, I found a spot which I recognized from the photos from the first attempt, except that this day there was a solid snow cover, with snow drifts hanging over the edge of the clifftop. I did however notice that it might be possible to get a little higher by taking the left fork of the gully, and indeed this worked nicely.

As I got close to the final steep step up to the top, I suddenly noticed clear signs that this gully must be used quite regularly: Someone had bolted a chain to the left-hand wall of the gully, with bolts every 5 m or so!

Going hand over hand up this chain, pulling it out of the snow along the way, I got to the top and ran the final 100+ m to the exact spot.

Going downhill in the snow was a little faster than going up, but I had to be careful so I wouldn't stumble and start sliding down.

With the photographs and everything, the trip took just about 45 minutes.


 All pictures
#1: Top of the gully seen from the confluence
#2: Ingolfsfjall (Ingolfs mountain)
#3: Border markers going up the gully
#4: Looking up the gully
#5: Snow drift covered Confluence area
#6: GPS
#7: Valley panorama
#8: Satellite image with track log
ALL: All pictures on one page (broadband access recommended)