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Memorial Cross planting at Hrafntinnusker

Pictures are at the bottom...

In summer 2005, I walked the Laugarvegurinn route, from Landmannalaugur to Þórsmörk. It's a fantastic walk, and one of the highlights for me was the ice caves at Hrafntinnusker. These are two big caves in the ice, formed by hot spring water melting tunnels out of a massive chunk of ice on the side of the hill. They collapse late summer, and reform each winter with the new snow.

In 2006, a german backpacker was killed when the cave collapsed while he was still in it. Apparently he was scared of it collapsing, so had stayed in the entrance. But it was only the entrance that collapsed, and some people further in survived. Pretty rough luck.

The following year, some friends of his came to iceland to complete the walk he'd started. They had also asked for, and received, permission to put up a memorial cross at the site. Guido and Wolfgang, working in concrete research, and through our connections at the german embassy were asked if they'd like to help. I got asked if I'd like to go along for the drive.

Three men from the institute, Guido, Wolfgang and Helgi, along with me, would drive in in jeeps, carrying all the concrete mix and tools, and would meet the friends there, who had carried in the cross.

It was a fantastic trip. We got spectacular weather, and some great 4wd country to go with it. Guido had done an excessive amount of work designing a mix for the foundation, it was even going to be self compacting concrete. All said and done, we just enjoyed a nice drive back home again. A great day off work. (well, I was already retired by this point, but still)

Some of the photos are a bit rough, because they were taken from a moving jeep, through the windows. It's amazing the difference things can make!

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