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Skallaleið

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Trail stats

Distance
10.34 mi
Elevation gain
2,008 ft
Technical difficulty
Difficult
Elevation loss
2,008 ft
Max elevation
3,423 ft
TrailRank 
44 4.9
Min elevation
2,015 ft
Trail type
Loop
Time
23 hours 45 minutes
Coordinates
1362
Uploaded
August 15, 2014
Recorded
August 2014
  • Rating

  •   4.9 4 Reviews
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3,423 ft
2,015 ft
10.34 mi

near Skogar, Suðurland (Lýðveldið Ísland)

Viewed 4365 times, downloaded 192 times

Trail photos

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Itinerary description

Landmannalaugar is perhaps the most beautiful and unique place to visit in all of Iceland. There are numerous great hiking tracks around the area but what most people don’t know are the options the region offers for serous all-mountain-biking.

This route begins by following the classic Laugavegur hiking route leading to Þórsmörk. Starting at the tourist hut you head straight into the wall of black Lava following the narrow path as they wind throught the rocks.
After you leave the lava field behind you, you get to the first short climb leading up to a small thermal area. A good spot for a short break and the first photos.
From there it starts getting tough as this is where the hiking part really begins. Head up the mountains until you reach a crossing (waypoint: Laugavegur – Skalli). This is where you leave the Laugavegur track and move eastwards.
The next 4 or so km are relatively easy mostly cycleable.
At km 9 is the scenic highlight of the trip as you reach a huge canion called Jökulgil. Another Kodak-moment for sure.
Following the track eastwards you get to a final rise until you have reached the singletrack which leads down from Skalli on the eastern side on the mountain in a northern direction. The narrow singletrack like a cut in the steep slope of the mountain with loose rocks and gravel on both sides. The underground is loose and you have to be careful not to make a mistake as it is likely to take you crashing down the mountain. From a biking point-of-view this is the most fun section of the trail. Steep, technical and taking forever to reach the bottom.
Once you clear this stage there is one more small rise before you see the camping site of Landmannalaugar in front of you again and a final fun packed downhill section.

All in all a great route. Quite technical at times but not overly demanding.

I recommend you keep an eye on the weather report before you plan the trip. If it is cloudy it might impact the view from the tops and rain could make parts of the route very soft and muddy.

Don´t forget to be well prepared. This is the middle of the Icelandic high-lands and the weather can change quickly. Remember to bring spare warm clothes just in case.

I don’t recall going across any creeks so finding water along the way might be difficult. Make sure your water bottle is filled before you take off.

Waypoints

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Jökulgil view

PictographWaypoint Altitude 0 ft

Laugavegur - Skalli

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Thermal area

Comments  (6)

  • ManyRevolutions Aug 21, 2015

    Hi, I am keen to do this, but 16 km and 23 hrs? Is that correct?

  • Photo of Ballenapez
    Ballenapez Aug 24, 2015

    Hmm that doesn't sound right at all
    Its a tough ride and hike that will take 4-5 hours

  • ManyRevolutions Aug 29, 2015

    I have followed this trail  View more

    Fantastic ride! Big day out, but absolutely stunning and quite varied terrain - 99% excellent riding, mixed with a few carry sections. The 'very difficult' assessment mainly pertains to the total effort required (took us 5.5 hrs with a few million photo stops) and the fairly steep technical traverse off the top - which is quite doable for the game. Chur

  • bodvar thorisson Jul 6, 2016

    I have followed this trail  View more

    Gagalagú skemmtilegur

  • Védís Aug 10, 2018

    I have followed this trail  View more

    OMG what a trail. Two words - ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC!

  • Photo of Andrés Nói Arnarsson
    Andrés Nói Arnarsson Jul 31, 2022

    I have followed this trail  verified  View more

    Cool bike mission in Landmannalaugar, not too much of hikeing and fun downhill parts.

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