issued 13th March 2019 Snow fall in the South and East of Iceland are creating Winter driving conditions on the roads. Light-weight crampons are recommended for most tourist spots as the paths are icy.
Now that we have winter and often snow and ice on the ground, it’s important to wear proper footwear. It can be very slippery and falling can cause accidents. Microspikes are recommended and it’s important to stay on marked paths and roads.
No alerts in the forecast for the next couple of days but some snowfall along the south coast and in east Iceland.
Winter tires are necessary and slow down when driving in winter conditions; icy/slippery roads, snow on the roads, poor visibility, etc.
General conditions in the highlands:
All F-roads are now closed because of winter conditions and will not open until mid/late June!
Conditions in popular tourist sites:
Conditions depend entirely on the weather which must be checked every day.
Reykjanes: Constructions by Gunnuhver fixing the decks and more. Valahnjúkur is closed due to dangerous conditions!
Seltún/Krýsuvík: The hot sprins area is closed due to high activity and danger of expolsions. Stay out of the closed area!
Þingvellir: Please stay on marked paths. Microspikes are recommended when icy.
Geysir: Please stay on marked paths. Microspikes are recommended when icy.
Gullfoss: Please stay on marked paths. Microspikes are recommended when icy.
Western Iceland: Dangerous area around the landslide in Hítardalur. Do not go there! Important to stay on marked paths everywhere.
Snæfellsjökull National Park: Snow on walking trails. Important to only go on the glacier with an experienced guide. Show caution at/around sea cliffs.
Westfjords: In general winter conditions on roads and some mountain roads are closed. Note that at bridges are sharp edges and deep holes, show caution because it’s easy to damage cars.
Látrabjarg and Rauðisandur: The road to Látrabjarg has no winter service so it can become impassable very quickly. In heavy rain Látrabjarg becomes very slippery and trails become muddy. The road to Rauðisandur is very steep, threads the mountain with out protective rails which can be challenging for inexperienced drivers.
Hvítserkur: The road has lots of potholes. The walking path can be icy/slippery at this time of year.
Goðafoss: Microspikes are recommended when icy. Important to stay on marked paths.
Mývatn: Even if the ice on Lake Mývatn looks solid, there are weak spots on it and big danger of falling through. Do not walk onto it! The road to Hverfell/Hverfjall is only passable for jeeps and impassable to Krafla/Víti.
Dettifoss and Selfoss: Roads 862 and 864 are closed.
Hengifoss: Winter conditions in the area. Microspikes are recommended.
Jökulsárlón: Nothing unusual about conditions.
Svínafellsjökull: Civil Protection advises against travel on Svínafellsjökull due to landslide danger and guided tours on the glacier are discouraged. Travelers are advised to stop only for a short while at viewpoints by the glacier tongue.
Dyrhólaey: The road to Háey is only for 4×4 jeeps. When walking around, do not climb over fences/chains. Stay on marked paths/areas. Show extra caution when it’s windy.
Reynisfjara: Use extra caution, stay WELL back from the water, and do not leave children unattended! Do not enter the cave! Rocks fall from the “ceiling” and going there you can get caught in the waves. The beach can always be dangerous due to the unpredictability of the waves.
Skógafoss: Important to stay within marked areas and on marked paths to protect the nature.
Seljalandsfoss: Some days the trail behind the waterfall is closed because it’s icy/slippery and too dangerous. Microspikes are recommended and it’s necessary to wear good walking shoes.
Conditions on hiking trails:
Hiking in Iceland requires proper equipment even on shorter hikes as trails are often not like the ones travelers are used to. Please study our equipment list as preparation is key for successful travel in Iceland. The way down can often be harder than the way up so hiking poles are a good tool to help tired knees.
Esja: Important not to underestimate the elevation gain and weather. It’s important to stay on the trails, which can at this time of year be wet, muddy or icy. It’s necessary to be dressed/equipped for winter and bad weather because the weather conditions can change very quickly. Recommended to bring microspikes, in case the trails are sicy.
Reykjadalur: Proper hiking shoes required and microspikes for the icy parts. Important to stay on marked trails, nature in the area is very sensitive, plus there are dangerous hot springs around.
Básar: Winter conditions in the area.
Fimmvörðuháls: The trail has been closed for some time to protect that nature. Winter is there with snow and bad weather conditions are a fact. The huts have closed. A challenging hike and conditions vary a lot on the weather and at this time of year only go there if the weather is very good! Fog on the top and even snow is common which limits the visibility. Snow for some kms at the top. Foot prints in the snow should never be 100% relied uppon. Important to keep in mind that access to water is very limited after the river, on the pass itself.
Þórsmörk: Winter conditions in the area.
Landmannalaugar: Trails (and the whole area) covered with snow. Hut is closed.
Laugavegur: The huts between Landmannalaugar and Þórsmörk have closed so it’s not recommended to do the hike. Winter conditions with snow and as huts have closed there’s no shelter for bad weather.
The hut in Langidalur is closed. Básar (Þórsmörk) is closed and the warden only comes to open for reserved groups and/or at weekends. The hut in Landmannalaugar is closed. Volcano Huts in Húsadalur is open all year round.
Þakgil: Campsite is closed.
Kjalvegur: Road F35 is closed.
Kerlingafjöll: Road F35 is closed.
Skaftafell: Trails are very wet. Important to wear proper hiking boots and stay on marked trails/paths.
SE of Vatnajökull: Winter conditions on trails. Important to stay on marked trails/paths. Microspikes are recommended.
Víknaslóðir: Huts are closed.
Ásbyrgi: Snow in the area and road to Ásbyrgi is impassable except for jeeps. Microspikes are recommended for icy/slippery trails.
Dettifoss: Roads 862 and 864 are closed so it’s not possible to drive there. At this time of year when the roads are open, microspikes are recommended when icy. Be extra careful around the canyon and stay on amrked paths.
Jökulsárgljúfur: The hiking trail between Ásbyrgi and Dettifoss is closed because of winter conditions.
Hljóðaklettar: The hiking trail between Ásbyrgi and Dettifoss is closed because of winter conditions.
Mývatn: Snow and ice in the area. Even if the ice on Lake Mývatn looks solid, there are weak spots on it and big danger of falling through. Do not walk onto it!
Dimmuborgir: Trails are icy. Important to stay on marked trails.
Hornstrandir: The scheduled boats have stopped sailing there. Winter conditions and no hiking.
Glymur: Log has been removed so there is no way but wade through the river. The current is quite strong and the river is ice cold so wading through is not for everyone.