For the third time in five days, rescue workers were called to assist a hiker who ran into trouble on the popular Fimmvörðuháls hiking route last night.
The man had fallen onto a ledge, injuring himself and jamming his foot between some rocks, whilst traversing the Goðahraun lava field. The incident occurred at around 6pm, and the rescue team was alerted by his hiking companion.
The 15-strong rescue squad arrived on the scene at around 8pm, and began preparations for the rescue. Hampered by the steepness of the cliffs and with limited visibility due to heavy fog, it took until 11:30pm to reach the man, who was soaked and in a weakened state, and hoist him to safety.
A seasonal route
Fimmvörðuháls in a popular hike that’s only open between—depending on the weather—June-September each year. The hiking route begins at Skógar, rising 1000m over a total distance of 22km. The route passes between the Eyjafjallajökull and Mýrdalsjökull glaciers, crossing a still-steaming lava field before descending steep scree slopes into the Þórsmörk area.
Although the hike is well marked, it’s an advanced route. Some areas require extreme care, with precipitous sections of trail, and descents down steep sections where holding onto chains embedded into the cliffside is required. The weather can change quickly, and hikers should be prepared for all conditions.
Guided hikes are available for those who’d like an expert to help them along. Up-to-date weather reports can be found at vedur.is, and extra safety and travel information can be found at safetravel.is.
Read more about Fimmvörðuháls here.
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