New Trip! – Our East Iceland Ski Touring week explores the remote Eastern Fjords of Iceland, which is a wonderful new ski touring destination. The geology of Iceland creates perfect ski terrain – with long, open and uniform slopes, covered in a well stabilized snowpack at this time of year.
Skiing in Iceland
This is a hotel based day touring week, offering summit to sea skiing amidst unique volcanic scenery. Our accommodation for the week is at a comfortable local hotel.
The Eastern Fjords of Iceland are one of the most picturesque parts of the country. Due to the geology of the region, the mountain sides are long and open and set at a perfect angle for skiing! For this reason (and the fact that the area receives so much snow) the region is becoming known as an excellent backcountry ski destination.
Our accommodation during the trip is at a local hotel in Fáskrúðsfjörður. This is a picturesque spot between the mountains and the sea, surrounded by lovely touring peaks in all directions. There are numerous excellent inland ski peaks in the area too, as well as coastal summits offering descents right to the sea. The highest peaks in the region rise to over 1200m – due to the excellent spring snow pack at this time of year, it’s possible to gain height very efficiently and do a large amount of skiing each day.
Trip reports >> Video – Iceland ski touring 2017
This is an intermediate level trip. To take part you should be at Fitness Level 3 and Tech Level 3 (see our Fitness/Experience guidelines below). You need previous ski touring experience to join this tour, which has long climbs involving kick turns on spring snow slopes – ie you need to be proficient at kick turns – plus the odd short boot track to reach summits. The trip includes 5-7 hour days and typically we’ll be doing ~1000m+ of ascent a day – so you can expect to be skinning for 3-5 hours a day. Type of ascent: we use 100% skinning on this tour – approx 6000m of skinning up, 6000m of skiing down, all at sea level.
One IFMGA guide skiing with 6 clients.
Included in price
- 6 days of guiding
- All guides expenses
- 5 nights accommodation in Fáskrúðsfjörður, including breakfast and evening meal.
- 2 nights accommodation in Reykjavik, including breakfast.
- Travel during the trip in shared hire vehicle
Excluded from price (see factsheet for extra costs info)
- Evening meals in Reykjavik
- Drinks and hill snacks
- Buses or taxis in Reykjavik between airport and hotel
- Equipment hire
Our accommodation in Fáskrúðsfjörður is at a comfortable local hotel. The village is surrounded by stunning mountains and has good ski tours in all directions. In Reykjavik we stay a convenient city centre hotel, eating out in local restaurants. Please let us know if you have any special dietary requirements. Hotel details can be found on our Accommodation page.
Fly from Uk to Keflavik International airport in Iceland. Flight bus into town and evening briefing at our hotel, before heading out for a meal.
Evening Briefing – your guide will run through kit checks and safety routines, before going on to discuss the current weather and mountain conditions and how these affect our plans.
We’ll have maps of the area to show you, so if you’ve any further questions or last minute requests, then this is the ideal time to bring them up.
AM Morning flight from Reykjavik to Egilsstaðir in Eastern Iceland. Pick up hire vehicle and drive to Fáskrúðsfjörður.
After an early breakfast and taxi to Reykjavik city airport, our 1 hour internal flight arrives in Egilsstaðir at 11am in the morning, so we have time for skiing on Monday. Depending on weather and conditions, we’ll either do a ski tour en route to Fáskrúðsfjörður, or drive there first and drop our kit off before heading out.
Ski touring in the Eastern Fjords. A wide variety of day tours are on offer, with both summit to sea descents, as well as higher inland peaks.
There are several excellent tours right above the village, as well as numerous outings in neighbouring fjords and valleys, which are easily accessed by road.
At this time of year, the days are long and the snowpack is very well stabilized – so it’s often possible to skin and ski two good peaks and accompanying descents each day, before relaxing in a hot tub before dinner.
Outings are selected to cater for group interest, ski ability and the current snow and weather conditions.
AM Final ski tour in the Eastern Fjords, before driving back to Egilsstaðir and catching the evening flight back to Reykjavik. PM Night out in Reykjavik!
Bus to Airport, flights home.
Your meeting point for this trip is in Reykjavik on Saturday 13th April 2024 (or UK airport(s) depending on peoples’ flights). If you plan to fly to Keflavik via another route than from the UK, then please let us know.
The closest airport to the Eastern Fjords is Egilsstaðir in Eastern Iceland, requiring a short internal flight. On the way out and back we spend a night in the capital Reykjavik, then fly from the domestic City Airport in Reykjavik to and from Egilsstaðir.
- Fly to Reykjavik, Keflavik International airport (KEF) on Saturday 13th April 2024.
- There are lots of options with Easyjet, BA and Icelandair, flying from London, Manchester, Glasgow and Edinburgh. Keflavik International is also well served by other European and long haul flights.
- Take Flybus into town, which will drop you off at hotel. Stop in Reykjavik on Saturday night – hotel BnB.
- Morning taxi to Reykjavik City Airport.
- Fly Reykjvik City Airport to Egilsstaðir on Sunday 14th April 2024 Flight FI60 09.55 – 11.00 – Icelandair
- Collect minibus and onwards transfer to our hotel.
- Fly Egilsstaðir to Reykjavik City airport on Fri 19th April 2024 Flight FI71 19.30 -20.35 – Icelandair
- Stop in Reykjavik on Friday night – hotel BnB.
- Fly Keflavik International airport – home on Saturday 20th April 2024. Same flight options as the outward leg, into Manchester, London, Glasgow and Edinburgh with Easyjet, BA and Icelandair.
- Taxi/bus transfer for journeys between airport – hotel – airport.
You will need to book 1x Hold Bag and 1x Ski Equipment on all flights.
Further information and travel links can be found on our Travel Planning page.
To enjoy this trip you should be comfortable operating at Fitness Level 3, and Ski Tech Level 3:
Fitness Level 3
You do 3-4 hours cv training/sport per week. At this level you are happy doing a 5-6 hr hillwalk, 40-50ml cycle or 3-4hr mountain bike ride without being totally exhausted. If you are into challenges – then the thought of doing a road sportive, or training to do a 1/2 (or maybe even a full) marathon, wouldn’t seem too ridiculous. On foot: you should be able to do the full Langdale Horseshoe: Langdale – Pike of Stickle – Angle Tarn – Bow Fell – Crinkle Crags – Pike of Blisco – Langdale in a day without finishing up exhausted. On skis: you can skin uphill at 300-400m/hr for 3-4 hrs a day (ie 8-1200m of ascent each day).
Tech Level 3
Confirmed Off Piste Skier. You can put down a reasonable set of tracks in powder, but difficult snow types – eg heavy wet snow, crusts, poor visibility or 40dg slopes – can all cause problems (though you can cope with them safely, if not elegantly!) *Equivalent to Ski Club of GB Off Piste Level: Purple – Advanced*
Likely to say: ‘I’d like to handle difficult snow/steep slopes more confidently in better style’
Our Advice: Off piste coaching still useful. Intermediate off piste weeks are at your level too. If you want to get into ski touring, try a touring course or intro level ski tour. If you’re an established ski mountaineer, then intermediate level tours are generally suitable.
To view all of our Ski Fitness Levels and Off Piste Technical Levels, please visit our Ski Ability page.
If you need to top up your fitness for this trip, please see our Ski Touring Training Advice page.
Day Touring/BC Ski Course Equipment List
Just remember, every extra kilo on your back knocks 10% off your enjoyment on the descents – so try and keep the weight down!
- Waterproof Jacket – preferably lightweight and breathable
- Overtrousers/ski pants – preferably with side zips
- Fleece mid layer or equivalent
- Spare fleece or lightweight insulated duvet jacket
- Socks – specialist ski socks or a warm loop lined pair of mountain socks
- Wicking thermal top – not cotton please…
- Thermal leggings or ski pants
- Thin inner gloves
- Warm ski gloves or mittens, if you suffer from cold hands
- Warm hat
- Water container – at least 1 litre
- Personal medications and blister kit – regular meds, zinc oxide tape, compeed and painkillers etc
- Ski goggles
- Sun glasses – CE rated 3 or 4 with side protection
- Sun and lip cream – factor 30+
- Wallet, passport and insurance docs
- Rucsac 25/35l – try and avoid ones covered in too many features, just ski and ice axe attachments required
- Freeride boots or ski mountaineering boots – check detailed factsheet kit list for preferred boots
- Skis with touring bindings – check detailed factsheet kit list for preferred skis and bindings
- Ski strap – to keep skis together on your rucksack if we need to carry them
- Ski poles – with good size 5cm+ baskets (telescopic poles are not needed)
- Climbing skins – they come with the skis if you hire your kit
- Harscheisen (ski crampons) – they come with the skis if you hire your kit
- Metal snow shovel – must be a full metal shovel (plastic blades don’t work in real avalanche debris!)
- Avalanche probe
- Avalanche transceiver – must be a modern digital model (older analogue models are now obsolete)
- Harness, with 120cm sling and locking karabiner
- Crampons – bring them if you have them
- Ice Axe – bring if you have one
- Ski helmet – a lightweight helmet is recommended for off piste skiing
Your guide will have all other safety kit, first aid and survival equipment.
Recommendations and Advice
Visit the Knowledge Base section of our website, where we publish an annual review of the years best new skis, boots and touring equipment, plus a range of other interesting tips and recommendations. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, please get in touch!
Please visit our Equipment Hire page for recommended hire shops in your resort, and Alpine Guides hire equipment price list.
For this trip you must have specialist travel insurance providing medical, emergency search/rescue and repatriation cover for off piste skiing and ski touring, as outlined in the trip itinerary. We also strongly recommend that you purchase cancellation cover, in case you’re unable to attend your trip due to personal circumstances or injury. Please arrange your insurance as soon as your trip is confirmed to run.
Further details can be found on our insurance info page.