Hraunhafnartangi is the
second northernmost point of the
country (66°32’03"N) just 3 kilometres
south of the Polar Circle. The lighthouse was moved there from Rifstangi,
the northernmost point of the country, in 1945. Lake
Hraunhafnarvatn is a good trout and char fishing lake.
Brother Saga tells about the sleighing of Thorgeir Havarsson after his
brave defence and 14 dead enemies. A heap of stones on the spot is
said to be his burial mound.
Hraunhofn is mentioned in two other
Sagas, The Gunnlaugs Saga and The Reykdaela Saga, and also
in The Book of Settlements, which tells us about the first
settler in the area, Arngeir. His sons were Thorgils and
Oddur and the daughter Thuridur. Once Arngeir and Thorgils
went to round up some sheep and were attacked by a polar
bear and killed. Oddur arrived where they had been killed
shortly afterwards, killed the bear, took it home, and ate
it. The meat made him berserk like and difficult to handle.
At one time he received a
message from his sister, who lived at the farm Steinastadir in the
Thjorsa Valley in the South, asking for his immediate help against her
aggressive neighbours, who were going to stone her to death for
witchcraft. He left on foot from Hraunhofn in the evening and arrived
at Steinastadir early next morning, in time to save her sisters life.
He covered a distance of 200-300 km in one night, which
goes to show how powerful the bear meat was. Once, after one of the
plagues had almost desolated the north-easternmost part of the
country, a young man, who was the only survivor of several farms, and
a young woman, who lived far to the west and faced the same situation,
left their homes on foot to seek someone alive elsewhere. They
eventually met on a spot called Meyjarthufa, The Virgin Mound, and
started a new generation.
North Iceland Saga Trail