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Arctic Coast Way –6 Kopasker via Raufarhofn to Bakkafjordur

Region: North Iceland
Coordinates: 66.4623° N 16.3076° W

The northeastern peninsula is nameless, but its largest portion is nicknamed “Sletta” short for “The Plain of the Arctic Fox”. Its mountains rise up to 400 m above sea level. In the west their structure is basaltic hyaloclastites and in the east it is mixed with solid basaltic rock. A reddish looking mound in the west, called Raudinupur, is coloured by red scoria (slag) suggesting an extinct central volcano. There the cliffs are teeming with seafowl, such as black and Brünnich’s guillemots, razorbills, puffins and the northernmost colony of the gannets. Most of the farms of the peninsula have been abandoned. In the past the inhabitants practiced sustenance farming, fishing and hunting. Both the sea and the lakes abound and practical people survived quite well there. The country’s northernmost point is Hraunhafnartangi, just about 3 km south of the Arctic Circle. Hraunhofn (Lava Harbour) was frequented by arriving and departing vessels during the Saga Period.
Angling at Mellrakkarsletta

village has been an authorized trading post since 1836 and fishing, fish processing and commerce are the main bases of livelihood. During the so-called herring years in the seventies, Raufarhofn was one of the most important ports for fish processing and the export of herring products.

Thorshofn village has been an authorized trading post since 1836. It has a good, natural harbour and the inhabitants base their livelihood on fishing, fish processing and commerce. It is situated on the peninsula Langanes, which narrows like a spear point toward northeast and its fowling cliffs have been and still are a means of sustenance for the those, who live there. Nowadays, the area is very sparsely populated. Most farms have been abandoned during the last few decades. Some of the remaining farmers tend the breeding colonies of the eiders and collect their down, clean it and sell at high prices.

The name Bakkafjordur applies to both the bay and the village on its eastern side. It received its trading licence in 1885 and the bases of livelihood are fishing, fish processing, commerce and services rendered to the agricultural surroundings. The old pier and crane are still standing and give an idea about the conditions in the past. The harbour was open to all weathers and the crane was used to hoist the fishing boats into and out of the water every time they went fishing and returned.

Arctic Coastal Way – 5. Akureyri – Husavik to Kopasker

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