In the morning I ask the host, Magnús, about Hvalá plant.
He supports the damming and the power plant. All locals are supposed to support it. The situation with electricity in the area is not good. In addition the road is closed for three months in the winter and people go shopping for groceries with a snowmobile over the mountain. The hotel may be open but tourists cannot get here unless they ski. Building of a decent road has been postponed for the last 20 years. There are regular electricity cuts in Ísafjörður and during these times factories use diesel generators. The power plant would solve all these problems as by magic. Understandable, like this the traces in nature would not be a consequence of human greed but sustainable energy use that would make people‘s live in the area easier. As an alternative they could all move to Reykjavik. The doubters on the other hand claim that since the owners of the future plant are in a big extent foreign companies which are connected to the silicon factory so big industries would use the energy and not the local people. Tourism is the biggest economic sector in Iceland and sells itself mainly with untouched nature. Magnús again claims that for last two years no-one has stayed in the hotel because of Hvalá. Now there’s me. The others have been camping in the wilderness.
The rain is so thick that the horizon is missing. River is road is river. In the cloud shimmer dozens of bright white waterfalls. Radio says that somewhere some streams have developed into rivers and flashed a couple of tourists away who had to be saved with a helicopter. This really isn’t a comfortable weather for hiking and camping.
I stop in Hólmavík in order to eat and visit the witch museum. They burned witches mainly in the Westfjords during the second half of 17th century and witches were for the most part men.
My rain shelter is Akranes, the cheapest accommodation I could find that is relatively close to the destination of my next vaguely planned adventure, Húsafell.
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