With the five-day-long Easter weekend now behind us, all reports are that the annual Aldrei fór ég suður music festival in Ísafjörður went swimmingly – despite the bad weather. And hope is at hand there too, with warm weather on its way.
Aldrei fór ég suður is the highlight of a weeklong schedule of events, including Ski Week, which has made the Westfjords town of Ísafjörður the focal point of Iceland every Easter for the last ten years. This year’s festival stars included Icelandic household names like Helgi Björns, Retro Stefson, Mammút, Maus and Hjaltalín.
The festival was a success despite the weather, which remained cold and threatened to prevent visitors arriving or leaving again. Flights were canceled and road conditions were treacherous. The town’s population roughly doubles each Easter week, and this year was no exception, despite the travel disruption.
According to Vísir.is, locals and regular visitors were in agreement on Friday evening that they could not remember it snowing more heavily any other Easter. Later in the long weekend, weather conditions regularly swung between beautiful and brutal with half an hour’s notice.
Hopes are high that Easter weekend was winter’s last hoorah, as the latest forecasts are for much warmer and settled weather to move in right away.
The Icelandic Met Office is calling for temperatures up to 15°C today and cloudless skies across practically the whole country from tomorrow. The sudden thaw is expected to make rivers swell significantly, but flooding is not thought likely.
The switch from winter to summer (with a short period of spring in between) in Iceland usually occurs quite suddenly, due to North Atlantic weather patterns which change at roughly the same time every year.
The official first day of summer in Iceland is this Thursday – a day affectionately mocked for its traditionally terrible weather. Maybe this year it will live up to its name…