The crisp mountain air against my face kept me refreshed as we hiked through the endless Icelandic mountains. Although there were no trees in sight, the great fog ahead of us kept our destination a mystery. The farther up along the mountain we walked, the warmer the water got. We had heard from the locals that the hike along the geothermal rivers in this town were not to be missed. It was not a tourist destination, but a genuine part of Iceland and nothing short of magical.
Testing out the running stream with my fingertips gave feeling back to my numb hands, and I realized how cold I had become. The unkind rain had penetrated through my so-called waterproof clothing, and I was drenched head to toe. Nonetheless, we continued our journey, watching as the hills disappeared behind us just as new hills emerged in front of us.
The cool winds grew harsher as we climbed, and the rain was coming down at an unsettling pace. We were running low on time but still had a long ways to go, so we settled for one final hill. In one last effort, we broke through the massive clouds that had been blocking our view the entire journey. The view below us was as clear as Iceland’s famous glacial waters. The wind was calmer, and the rain seemed lighter. Looking to my right, I saw the faint outline of sheep drinking from the stream and as we looked down at every hill we had walked through we felt triumphant.