SEEDS 39. Skaftafell & Þórsmörk
This camp was divided in two groups like few other project this year.
Thus, the volunteers had the opportunity to discover two part of Iceland in one camp. Skaftafell and Þórsmörk are know to be two of the most beautiful parts of Iceland and we can say that the volunteers really enjoyed the nature and landscapes they discovered.
In Skaftafell, The first group started the work on a new « erosion control » project created by our host. We were building dams into a abandoned channel, previously used by farmers, in order to slow down the water flow during the snow melting in spring/summer and thus limit the erosion process. We spent some time to fight against the lupine expansion, an invasive plant in Iceland introduced. We also worked on the national park hiking path where we built steps and drain. The second group also worked on hiking path maintenance and also improved them by building wooden stairs and bridge on the way to the glacier point of view.
In Þórsmörk, the two groups had more or less the same task. They were working for the International hostelling association, a world wide NGO, mainly helping to run the Húsadalur campsite and huts located in the Þórsmörk valley. Their job was various from painting some chairs for the huts to cleaning the facilities,or helping in the kitchen to improving the campsite area. The first group also worked on the Þórsmörk path with volunteers from the national environment agency.
The volunteers in Skaftafell were sleeping in tents and almost each volunteer had a private tent. They were using the Skaftafell campsite facilities and had a kitchen tent to cook that was also used for meetings and games. In Þórsmörk, the volunteers slept in a big mountain hut inside the camp. They were using the facilities of the campsite and eating with the Húsadalur campsite ’s team. During their free time, the volunteers could enjoy many different available hikes in the area (and these two locations are among the best to hike in Iceland) as well as hot pond and sauna. The volunteers in Skaftafell had the possibility to experience glacier walk on the mighty «Vatnajokull », the biggest glacier in Europe as those in Þórsmörk did some horse riding with authentic Icelandic horses.
These two camps were very different. The work, accommodation, food and hosts were really different. But they had one common point. The magical beauty of their surrounding nature!