Páll Stefánsson's picture

Yesterday, I was at Sólheimajökull (‘Sun World Glacier’), an 8-km (5-mile) long outlet glacier running from Mýrdalsjökull icecap in South Iceland. And not for the first time.

Sólheimajökull is the glacier with easiest access from the capital, as it lies at only 150 km (90 miles) east of Reykjavík by Ring Road 1.

Sólheimajökull glacier.
Sólheimajökull yesterday. Beautiful, right?

Yesterday, I went there with my friend RAX, photographer Ragnar Axelsson. We have visited the glacier together many times before.

One autumn five years ago, I had hiked up on the glacier, felt hypnotized by all the rainbows and the magnificent light. After hours of hard work, I came back down to find RAX sitting in the car. He played me his favorite song and it resonated in the stillness.

Happy, I told him about my victories, how I had beaten the light and the slippery ice high up on the glacier. Then it hit me. I had forgotten to take off my lens cap. I didn’t realize until I unfastened my Linhof 612 film camera from my Gitzo tripod.

RAX’s song never became my favorite song.

Yesterday, there was a different kind of vibe in the air. No sound of silence but endless prattle in the endless line of tourists, who had come to discovering the quiet, unique Icelandic nature.

Tourists on Sólheimajökull glacier.
The full picture. The detail posted above is of the top left corner.

So help me god.

Páll Stefánsson – ps(at)


Views expressed here are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Iceland Review.