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Hiking in Akureyri Area

Region: North Iceland
Coordinates: 65.6692096° N 18.2758205° W
Hiking time: Various
Difficulty: easy
Length: Various km
Elevation: Various m
Highest Point: Various m


The Glera Valley Area offers quite a few walking and climbing routes. The valley is surrounded by many of the highest peaks of Northern Iceland and a number of small glaciers. Some of the most popular routes on the map are described in the following text and applies to summer conditions. Walking time is not mentioned, but an average person covers about 4 km in level landscapes and one hour might be added for each 450 m ascent. For routes No. 1-7, the most accessible car park is at the rubbish tip of Akureyri. Walkers and climbers should beware of the fast changing weather conditions in this mountainous area. Storms and blizzards may set in suddenly the whole year round. The routes are graded according to how strenuous they are: Easy Hike, Moderate Hike with some strenuous walking or scrambling, Difficult Hike with strenuous walking or scrambling in steep slopes.

Route 1. Mt Sulur from the rubbish tip (Easy)

Distance to summit about 5 km. Vertical ascent about 880 m.
The route is marked with yellow/red sticks. It is quite steep in the upper reaches. On a fine day the view is excellent toward north and east. In good conditions a walk from the summit of Mt Ytri-Sula to Sydri-Sula offers a good view to the south.

Route 2. Along the eastern side of the Glera Valley to the Lambi hut (Moderate)

Distance about 11 km. Vertical ascent about 470 m.
The route is marked with yellow/red sticks. It starts at the rubbish tip, at first following the eastern rim of the gorge of River Glera, then it turns away from the river to the slope of the valley, mostly following sheep paths to a pedestrian bridge across the stream Fremri-Lamba. From there one follows the sticks across the hilly Grenisholar to the hut.

Route 3. From the Lambi hut to the summit of Mt Kerling (Difficult)

Distance to summit about 4 km. From there to farm Finnastadir 6 km. Vertical ascent about 800 m.
The route is unmarked. It can be very difficult and an ice axe and crampons are sometimes necessary. The route up to the top plateau of Mt Kerling follows a buttress on the western side of the mountain, facing Mt Glerardalshnjukur. On a fine day the view from the summit is excellent. Mt Kerling (1,538m) is the highest mountain of Northern Iceland. An experienced climber may choose a very steep and difficult route east of the mountain and down in a soutwesterly direction to the farm Finnastadir in the Eyjafiord County.

Route 4. From the Lambi hut down the Finnastadir Valley (Moderate)

Distance about 11 km. Vertical ascent about 270 m.
The route is unmarked. It starts along the eastern side of the Glera Valley, then up to the pass (1,000m) between Mt Glerardalshnjukur and Mt Kerling, then east along the north side of the Finnastadir Valley to the farm Finnastadir.

Route 5. From the Lambi hut through Nyrdri-Krokur and down the Skjol Valley (Moderate)

Distance about 18 km. Vertical ascent about 400 m.
The route is unmarked. It starts along the eastern side of the Glera Valley up to the pass immediately to the west of Mt Storistallur. From there down on the western side of the river in the Nyrdri-Krokur, then toward the east down through the Skjol Valley, keeping to the south of the river, to the farm Mikligardur in the Eyjafiord County.

Route 6. From the Lambi hut down the Baegisa Valley (Moderate)

Distance about 15 km. Vertical ascent about 620 m.
The route is unmarked. It starts to the southwest from the hut, down to River Glera, where it normally can be forded. After crossing the river climb to the plateau Hrutaskeid, then bear right to the pass between the peaks of Mt Steinsfell and Mt Trollatindur. From there, descend to the north, down the glacier Baegisarjokull and then down the Baegisa Valley, keeping west of the river, to the farm Sydri-Baegisa.

Route 6a. From the Lambi hut to the summit of Mt Trollafjall (Difficult)

Distance to the summit about 7 km. Vertical ascent about 850 m.
The route is unmarked. It follows route 6 up to the pass between the peaks of Mt Steinsfell and Mt Trollatindur. From the pass, ascend across the summit of Mt Trollatindur up to the summit of Mt Trollahyrna. This is steep, but relatively straightforward. For the summit of Mt Trollahyrna, continue north to the summit of Mt Trollafjall (1,483m), the second highest summit in the area. On a fine day the view from the mountain is breathtaking.

Route 7. From the Lambi hut down the Glera Valley to the west of River Glera (Easy)

Distance about 12 km. Practically all downhill.
Walk from the hut southwest to River Glera. Follow the west bank down the valley, mostly along sheep trails, partly marked with yellow/red sticks. Cross River Fremri-Lamba on the pedestrian bridge, then follow the bank of River Glera down to the tributary Heimari-Lamba after which the route follows sheep trails above the gorge of River Glera, to the road leading up the Water Works of Akureyri. Continue down the road until you see a sign for a pedestrian bridge across River Glera, which takes you back to the car park at the rubbish tip.

Route 7a. From the Lambi hut up to Trollin and Trollaspegill Lake (Moderate)

Distance from the Lambi hut to the pedestrian bridge across River Fremri-Lamba about 7 km. Vertical ascent about 450 m.
The route follows route 7 from the hut across River Glera. From there ascend on the west side of the hill Hausinn up to the very prominent pinnacles called Trollin (The Trolls), which protrude out of the scree on the eastern side of Mt Trollafjall. From the pinnacles, descend northeast to the small lake Trollaspegill (Troll Mirror). Continue northeast from there down to the bridge across River Fremri-Lamba. This route offers spectacular views across the Glera Valley.

Route 8. From the ski-hotel to the summit of Mt Stryta on the Glacier Vindheimajokull (Difficult)

Distance about 6 km. Vertical ascent about 950 m.
This route is unmarked. It is very steep in places and crampons and ice axes are sometimes necessary. Walk uphill from the ski-hotel (Skidastadir), along the ski lifts, then northward from the uppermost lift, up to the prominent ridge Mannshryggur. Either climb up a very steep snow slope on the southern side of the ridge or climb up the eastern end of the ridge, onto the plateau of Mt Hlidarfjall. On a fine day, the view from up there is excellent. Continue southwest toward the very prominent pyramid called Stryta. Descend onto the glacier Vindheimajokull before reaching the foot of the northeast ridge of Stryta. Climb up the ridge to the summit (1,456m). Enjoy the breathtaking view.

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