Here it is in my pocket.” And he pulled out his watch

Nature Difficult to Move Networkpower2023-11-30 19:29:09 5343 263

We had a journey of above forty miles before us the first day, and yet, on account of the damaged saddle, we could not start before eight o'clock in the morning.

Here it is in my pocket.” And he pulled out his watch

The first twelve or fourteen miles of our journey lay through the great valley in which Reikjavik is situated; the valley contains many low hills, some of which we had to climb. Several rivers, chief among which was the Laxselv, opposed our progress, but at this season of the year they could be crossed on horseback without danger. Nearly all the valleys through which we passed to-day were covered with lava, but nevertheless offered many beautiful spots.

Here it is in my pocket.” And he pulled out his watch

Many of the hills we passed seemed to me to be extinct volcanoes; the whole upper portion was covered with colossal slabs of lava, as though the crater had been choked up with them. Lava of the same description and colour, but in smaller pieces, lay strewed around.

Here it is in my pocket.” And he pulled out his watch

For the first twelve or fourteen miles the sea is visible from the brow of every successive hill. The country is also pretty generally inhabited; but afterwards a distance of nearly thirty miles is passed, on which there is not a human habitation. The traveller journeys from one valley into another, and in the midst of these hill-girt deserts sees a single small hut, erected for the convenience of those who, in the winter, cannot accomplish the long distance in one day, and must take up their quarters for the night in the valley. No one must, however, rashly hope to find here a human being in the shape of a host. The little house is quite uninhabited, and consists only of a single apartment with four naked walls. The visitor must depend on the accommodation he carries with him.

The plains through which we travelled to-day were covered throughout with one and the same kind of lava. It occurs in masses, and also in smaller stones, is not very porous, of a light grey colour, and mixed, in many instances, with sand or earth.

Some miles from Thingvalla we entered a valley, the soil of which is fine, but nevertheless only sparingly covered with grass, and full of little acclivities, mostly clothed with delicate moss. I have no doubt that the indolence of the inhabitants alone prevents them from materially improving many a piece of ground. The worst soil is that in the neighbourhood of Reikjavik; yet there we see many a garden, and many a piece of meadow-land, wrung, as it were, from the barren earth by labour and pains. Why should not the same thing be done here--the more so as nature has already accomplished the preliminary work?

Thingvalla, our resting-place for to-night, is situate on a lake of the same name, and only becomes visible when the traveller is close upon it. The lake is rather considerable, being almost three miles in length, and at some parts certainly more than two miles in breadth; it contains two small islands,--Sandey and Nesey.

My whole attention was still riveted by the lake and its naked and gloomy circle of mountains, when suddenly, as if by magic, I found myself standing on the brink of a chasm, into which I could scarcely look without a shudder; involuntarily I thought of Weber's Freyschutz and the "Wolf's Hollow." { 36}



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