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Much like every other morning I awoke refreshed and set to packing my car so I could set out on my adventure. Today my plan was to make it to Höfn and spend the night there in the hostel. I’d heard that there was a wonderful Icelandic restaurant there where I could sample some Icelandic lobster and given my normal penchant for amazing food, I was eager to sample their version. The hotel offered a breakfast along with the room charge, so I headed over to the restaurant hungry and ready to begin my day. Imagine my surprise when I entered a room with white table clothes, flowers, and candles on the table. Breakfast was lovely and I have to say that given the chance I will definitely take the opportunity to enjoy a candlelit breakfast again.

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After breakfast I headed back up the mountains from whence I’d came the day before, ever finding new and breathtaking sights on which to feast my eyes. At one point I saw a sign for a waterfall, so I turned off to take a morning hike. The next two hours were spent walking and taking numerous pictures, exploring my camera and my eye, trying to capture the beauty that was encompassing my soul. I was utterly content and happy, my strides were confident and sure, I played with the settings on my camera happily, not worried about catching “perfection” but wanting to show my vision of Iceland on that hike. I’ll let the pictures tell the story of those hours…

The view down mountain right before my waterfall laden hike.

The view down mountain right before my waterfall laden hike.

Beautiful waterfall, I didn't catch the name of this one.

Beautiful waterfall, I didn’t catch the name of this one.

There was (and still is) a large part of me that wanted to spend all day wandering about, playing in this beautiful creek. Do you blame me?

There was (and still is) a large part of me that wanted to spend all day wandering about, playing in this beautiful creek. Do you blame me?

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Experimenting with silky water.

Experimenting with silky water.

The colors and texture pulled me into this spot, I took so many pictures, playing around trying to get everything "just so" to capture my experience.

The colors and texture pulled me into this spot, I took so many pictures, playing around trying to get everything “just so” to capture my experience.

Who likes silky water? ME :) Of course, not having a tripod makes this a bit blurry, but that just adds to the charm... Right? Haha

Who likes silky water? ME 🙂 Of course, not having a tripod makes this a bit blurry, but that just adds to the charm… Right? Haha

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Fall in Iceland is not to be missed.

Fall in Iceland is not to be missed.

My hike done I continued on my journey, driving through the beautiful East Fjords of Iceland full of mountains, waterfalls and picturesque towns. Again, if you go to Iceland, don’t stop only at the gorgeous places around the capital, explore, reach, and run. Experience what Iceland has to offer. It will open places in your soul you didn’t know existed.

More waterfalls, mountains, and gorgeously saturated countryside. A feast for my eyes.

More waterfalls, mountains, and gorgeously saturated countryside. A feast for my eyes.

My path continued to a tunnel through the mountains. You probably all realize how I feel about tunnels by now, they really aren’t my thing. All that weight crushing down on top of you, the feel almost tangibly smothering, but of course, like so many other “trials” I made it through to the other side and was once again struck anew at the vistas spread before me.

 

This was where I stopped to have lunch, wonderful view. Mountains at my back and the ocean to my front.

This was where I stopped to have lunch, wonderful view. Mountains at my back and the ocean to my front.

See? The ocean!

See? The ocean!

I took a TON of pictures of the waves crashing against the shore, I didn't quite get what I was looking for, but this was close.

I took a TON of pictures of the waves crashing against the shore, I didn’t quite get what I was looking for, but this was close.

A flock of geese were going to land in the little cove next to where I was having lunch, but they saw me and changed their mind. From what I've read, they are well hunted.

A flock of geese were going to land in the little cove next to where I was having lunch, but they saw me and changed their mind. From what I’ve read, they are well hunted.

My little Duster.

My little Duster.

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I don’t even know what else to tell you about that day without going into monotonous detail about the vistas spread before me. My lunch was taken overlooking the ocean, surrounded by silence yet again, reveling in the still of nature, reluctant to even let the sound of a pen scratching across my pad destroy the perfection. My thoughts regularly ran along the lines of, “This has to stop at some point. There is just no freaking way a place can be this incredible.” But it was and it didn’t. Iceland seemed to be making all my desires come true, before the end of the day I saw reindeer, glaciers, mountains, crashing waves, isolated waterfalls, and utter still. A more perfect day I couldn’t imagine. The “Lord of the Rings” fans amongst us should know that Middle Earth exists and it’s in Iceland.

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The water was so still in this little inlet that you could see the mountainside perfectly reflected.

The water was so still in this little inlet that you could see the mountainside perfectly reflected.

Not to mention the houses. Do you think they'd let me move in?

Not to mention the houses. Do you think they’d let me move in?

Another little stopping place, I wandered around taking pictures for awhile. This is where I filled up my first memory card of the trip!

Another little stopping place, I wandered around taking pictures for awhile. This is where I filled up my first memory card of the trip!

I took about a million pictures of this boat, trying to get it *just* right.

I took about a million pictures of this boat, trying to get it *just* right.

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A little monument alongside the road, there were some plaques detailing the conversion of Iceland to Christianity.

A little monument alongside the road, there were some plaques detailing the conversion of Iceland to Christianity.

The waves crashing on this black sand beach were calling my name. The striking light made for some interesting picture attempts, but it was a fun walk along the water all the same.

The waves crashing on this black sand beach were calling my name. The striking light made for some interesting picture attempts, but it was a fun walk along the water all the same.

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I love these black sand beaches. When I come back, I'll be exploring them more thoroughly.

I love these black sand beaches. When I come back, I’ll be exploring them more thoroughly.

There were quite a few swans and other waterfowl on this lake, although I'm not sure if it was connected to the ocean or not. This is where the air started to get even mistier than it had been all day, increasing the mystical quality of my drive exponentially.

There were quite a few swans and other waterfowl on this lake, although I’m not sure if it was connected to the ocean or not. This is where the air started to get even mistier than it had been all day, increasing the mystical quality of my drive exponentially.

Does a more picturesque road exist?

Does a more picturesque road exist?

I captured an entire sequence of these swans coming in for a landing. I'll spare you all the pictures here, but they were included in the Flickr set if you're interested.

I captured an entire sequence of these swans coming in for a landing. I’ll spare you all the pictures here, but they were included in the Flickr set if you’re interested.

Sparkling waters, misty horizons, and towers of clouds. Is it really a surprise I began to wonder if I'd accidentally slipped into Middle Earth? As I've said before, the Icelandic belief in elves and the like can be explained by spending some time touring the country. You might start to believe too...

Sparkling waters, misty horizons, and towers of clouds. Is it really a surprise I began to wonder if I’d accidentally slipped into Middle Earth? As I’ve said before, the Icelandic belief in elves and the like can be explained by spending some time touring the country. You might start to believe too…

Definitely Middle Earth. Which is freaking awesome, because I adore those books.

Definitely Middle Earth. Which is freaking awesome, because I adore those books.

If you had any idea just how difficult it was to restrain the impulse to stride off through those hills (mountains) and into the mists... Thankfully I still had a modicum of logical thought amidst the overload of beauty that was short circuiting my brain.

If you had any idea just how difficult it was to restrain the impulse to stride off through those hills (mountains) and into the mists… Thankfully I still had a modicum of logical thought amidst the overload of beauty that was short circuiting my brain.

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Yep. That's a castle.

Yep. That’s a castle. At least that’s what I decided.

The clouds rolling over the mountaintops sent me into paroxysms of delight. Repeatedly. Maybe I should be embarrassed, but... well... I'm not. Anyone with the slightest appreciation for earthly beauty would've been reveling in the sights that were laid before my eyes.

The clouds rolling over the mountaintops sent me into paroxysms of delight. Repeatedly. Maybe I should be embarrassed, but… well… I’m not. Anyone with the slightest appreciation for earthly beauty would’ve been reveling in the sights that were laid before my eyes.

When I finally pulled into Höfn I was filled with confidence. The restaurant I had wanted to go to was closed for the evening and so was the second place I found, but after some searching I found an open place and enjoyed an absolutely delectable dinner. The hostel was comfortable, although a bit musty, and after my full day, I fell asleep moments after lying down to dream about the magical land in which I had traveled for the last nine days. Iceland had become a part of me.

To Höfn

To Höfn

This the old road, apparently it suffered from these little rock slides fairly regularly and it was eventually rebuilt after several deaths. I love Iceland. :)

This the old road, apparently it suffered from these little rock slides fairly regularly and it was eventually rebuilt after several deaths. I love Iceland. 🙂

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Thank you for reading! I put the rest of the pictures in the Iceland Day 9 Flickr album.