WORK/PROJECT: SEEDS volunteers will again be working with the Reykjavík municipality in two of the main outdoors skiing and recreational areas in the capital region, Bláfjöll (or the Blue Mountains) and Skálafell.
In Skálafell the ski slopes are turned into a bike park during summertime and mountain bike enthusiasts can nourish their passion. The main tasks will include renovation and maintenance work on the bike trails; mainly raking and scraping them up. Other possible tasks may be related to general cleaning of the area.
In the Blue Mountains, the main tasks will be maintaining the slopes and preparing them for the next ski season. The municipality and several sports associations run lodges and mountain huts there and they may also need some renovation jobs, such as painting and/or cleaning.
The working plan is flexible and it will depend on the needs of our local hosts. No previous experience is necessary, but the work is demanding and requires a good physical condition. As it is outdoor work, volunteers shall be ready to adapt and be flexible with the working and free-time schedule, as, depending on the weather, we may not be able to perform some of the tasks or activities planned. The landscape is raw and volunteers need to be motivated to work outdoors and to experience isolated mountain areas.
The camp happens around the summer solstice, when the sun hardly sets and the nights are almost as bright as the days. The bright nights are magical and staying awake and enjoying the beautiful surroundings is a unique experience. During the time of the camp participants will have the opportunity to experience the midnight sun as there are 24 hours of light even if the sun does set for short periods of time.
ACCOMMODATION: SEEDS volunteers will stay in one of the ski lodges in the mountains and sleep in a shared dormitory. Please bring your own sleeping bag.
Volunteers will receive food supplies and be in charge of the cooking and cleaning activities. Do not forget some traditional/typical food, drinks, music and recipes from your country for the intercultural evening.
LOCATION: The skiing areas of Bláfjöll and Skálafell are both about 30 minutes driving away from the city. The Blue Mountains are south-west of Reykjavík and Skálafell is located to the east of the city. Both areas have great slopes for downhill skiing and snowboarding as well as tracks for cross-country skiing. Bláfjöll has 16 lifts and Skálafell has 4 lifts. The sports area in Skálafell is situated at an elevation between 380 and 700 m.
The Blue Mountain range is situated near the ring road and stretches from the capital area to the south-western lowlands. The highest mountain in the range reaches 600 m and in 1968 the district became a very popular skiing resort among Icelanders. The areas are excellent for recreation, not only for alpine and cross country skiing, but for other outdoor activities as well such as hiking and mountain biking. Nature lovers are certain to find something to their liking, but it’s important to be careful crossing the rugged lava fields because of the numerous caves underneath.
LANGUAGE: English will be the language in the camp; basic conversational skills are needed.
TERMINAL: Closest international Airport: Keflavík/Reykjavík (KEF). Bus station: Central Reykjavík (BSÍ).
EXTRAS / SPECIAL REMARKS: Participation fee EUR 300 (Euros). The fee can either be transferred in advance via bank transfer, or paid for on arrival. The fee includes the transport from Reykjavík to the campsite and back (on the first and last day of the camp) and the Reykjanes excursion with a visit to the Geldingadal volcano.
Meeting and departure time to the camp will be 16:00 (4 pm) on 27 June from the meeting point at SEEDS’ office in Reykjavík. After the camp we will return to Reykjavík in the afternoon of 11 July.
Volunteers shall be prepared for physical outdoors work and should bring good working shoes and clothes. In the mountains, the weather can change quickly and drastically. Even if it is summer, the weather can be cold or rainy. We recommend bringing good walking shoes/boots, warm and/or waterproof clothes (underlayers, overcoats, scarves, gloves and hats) as most of the tasks and activities take place outside.
The locations of the camp are remote and isolated, even though still close to the city. Free-time activities in the surroundings are mostly hiking and trekking.
Other excursions (Golden Circle, South Shore, Hot River Hike, Vesturland Trip or Snaefellsnes) can be arranged at discount fares for SEEDS participants in case there is additional free time after work or during the weekends.