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Today I caught my first celestial view of the Arctic Ocean. In the previous days, the ink-colored waters were tucked behind fjords and expansive fields and mountains. Now, I finally got a front row seat to witness the Arctic’s enormity and power.
I darted off the Ring Road towards Hvitserkur (which translates loosely to Drinking Dragon). The gravel road was dusty and flanked by numerous herds of Icelandic ponies and sheep. Human silhouettes also filled my vision as I neared Hvitserkur.
Finally, human contact after many hours and days of driving through remote territories. Our reunion congregated around Hvitserkur, which apparently was apparently a hidden gem in the north. Many tourist vehicles stopped for a pristine photo opportunity with the neigh-ing and baa-ing beasts.
Once I descended into the Hvitserkur viewing area, I gasped in awe. Mountains appeared almost like a mirage in the distance. The black sand beaches below stood serene and majestic. Yet, the golden, amber grass decorated the cliffs where I stood. All the elements would ordinarily clash against one another, but their stark differences illuminated their beauty.
Tourists scaled the cliffs to walk on the black shores, but I figured my accident-prone self shouldn’t risk it. The rising sun darkened the sea and appeared to ignite the grassy cliff tops in a wave of embers.
Back in the Ceed-kick, I ventured further up the road. The grassy cliffs continued to edge the Arctic shore, but cool, steel-colored rock formations jutted from the earth. The rocks were dusted with snow and stood cold and unattended to on my left.
These rocky formations traversed me back to the Nordic ages where Vikings ruled. Enormous in stature, these rocky giants demanded my attention and the gaze of my lens. Little did I know, these rocky giants were not only spectacular to me but also to Game of Thrones fans.
The Ring Road quickly melted back into its familiar state of lush grassland decorated with Icelandic ponies and sheep. There still was a multitude of waterfalls and wonders that astounded me.
This evening I rekindled with my Nordic roots and stayed in a Viking Long House. The hostel was not bustling during the shoulder season, which meant I ruled the Viking post.
I soaked in the geothermal hot tub – the only amenity that didn’t call towards the Nordic tradition — and watched another emerald-green Northern Lights display.