Ascent of Heiðarhorn on 2020-07-12

Climber: Dhruv Garg

Date:Sunday, July 12, 2020
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
    Elevation:3455 ft / 1053 m

Ascent Trip Report

After spending a week in and around Reykjavik since climbing Hvannadalshnúkur, we were trying to look for climbs to do over the weekend before flying out during the week. On Saturday, we drove to Eyjafjallajökull even though the weather forecast was crappy. It started raining as we slowly drove east. Lo and behold, we get to Seljavallalaug (Seljvavellir pool) and there are ominous clouds hanging 100m above us ready to unleash at a moment's notice. We concluded this as a dead end.

Upon further research for Sunday, my girlfriend found a couple of nice hikes around Reykjavik for us - Heiðarhorn and Akrafjall. Looking at trip reports from Greg, Petter and Rob, we decided to go for Heiðarhorn and leave Akrafjall for an after-work hike during the week.

Following Petter's accurate descriptions to get there, we got to the trailhead at 12.30 PM. It was cloudy with a very slight drizzle as we set on the trail. The trail disappeared after few minutes of walking. Knowing that we'd need to cross the stream, we decided to do so early in case it gets harder further up top (Spoiler alert: No it doesn't, just cross the stream further above). We used the stream as a handrail all the way to 500m right before the steep section of the climb with the waterfall in clear sight to our right. The clouds were hanging low and ready to envelope us completely as we ascended a few hundred feet. From then on, the route gradually veered left on the souther slopes of the mountain. A bunch of small streams alongside lush signature Icelandic moss buoyed us while navigating the whiteout. Eventually, we topped out on the ridge (960m) where it got quite a bit windy and the drizzle turned to rain. Our feet kicked into higher gear to quickly make our way to the top and sign the summit register at 3.30 PM. There was no snow along the way except for a small spot that we had to cross. To burst everybody's bubble, there were no views at the summit except for the whiteout.

After a few minutes, we headed down. Now that we knew that it'd be better to cross the stream in the flats below the southern slopes of the mountain, we crossed it near 410m. I'd suggest everyone to cross the stream around here going up or down. From then on, we found a faint trail which we followed until ~250m. Once our car came into view, it was a beeline to it for a change of clothes and a quick drive to Nauthólsvík Geothermal Beach to relax in the hot tub.

On to the next mountain on our trip...
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3276 ft / 998 m
    Total Elevation Loss:3276 ft / 998 m
    Round-Trip Distance:6 mi / 9.7 km
    Quality:3 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Stream Ford, Scramble
    Weather:Raining, Cool, Breezy, Low Clouds
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:3255 ft / 992 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 3058 ft / 932 m; Extra: 197 ft / 60m
    Loss on way in:197 ft / 60 m
    Distance:3 mi / 4.8 km
    Start Trailhead:397 ft / 121 m
    Time:2 Hours 43 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:3079 ft / 938 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 3058 ft / 932 m; Extra: 21 ft / 6m
    Gain on way out:21 ft / 6 m
    Distance:3 mi / 4.8 km
    End Trailhead:397 ft / 121 m
    Time:1 Hours 39 Minutes
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Dhruv Garg
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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