Gufufoss

Seydisfjordur, East Region (Austurland), Iceland

About Gufufoss


Hiking Distance: almost roadside
Suggested Time:

Date first visited: 2007-07-01
Date last visited: 2021-08-10

Waterfall Latitude: 65.23994
Waterfall Longitude: -14.05745

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Gufufoss looked to us like the largest and most striking waterfall in the Seyðisfjörður area, especially when we first looked upon it on our first trip to Iceland in 2007.

On that trip, the falls plunged with a rectangular shape and power that made it difficult to even get close to its misty base.

Seydisfjordur_002_jx_07012007 - Gufufoss
Gufufoss

According to my Icelandic dictionary, the word “gufa” meant “vapor” or “steam” so if this translation was correct, then this would be the “Steam Falls”, which was a rather appropriate name as you can see from the photo above.

That said, when we came back to Seyðisfjörður in August 2021, the falls had a bit less volume than on our first visit, and we had to contend with quite a bit of fog before we could properly see it.

As for getting to experience Gufufoss, there was a pullout pretty much right in front of the waterfall (see directions below).

From there, we were able to go on a pretty short walk along the banks of the Fjarðará before getting right up to the spray zone of the waterfall.

Gufufoss_067_08092021 - Mom approaching Gufufoss when the fog finally started to clear and we started to see a morning rainbow in its mist
Mom approaching Gufufoss when the fog finally started to clear and we started to see a morning rainbow in its mist

Given that this was an east-facing waterfall, we learned that morning was the best time to see the falls (possibly with a rainbow) since we’d be looking against the afternoon sun if it’s sunny.

There was also a thin trail that went downstream along the Fjarðará from the car park for Gufufoss, which eventually led to both the Efri and Neðri Úðafoss (“Upper and Lower Spray Falls”?) though this trail wasn’t as obvious to find on our second visit.

In fact, the Fjarðará contained many other smaller but powerful waterfalls, and the signage suggested that you could walk along the stream all the way to town.

Since I was content with going only as far as Neðri Úðafoss, I can’t say more about it, but when you drive up the Route 93, you can definitely notice a bunch of them.

Seydisfjordur_065_07012007 - One of the waterfalls within walking distance downstream of Gufufoss was Neðri Úðafoss
One of the waterfalls within walking distance downstream of Gufufoss was Neðri Úðafoss

Finally, it’s worth noting that on our first visit to Seyðisfjörður back in July 2007, there was a lot of construction activity.

That’s mostly because the steep-walled mountains here are prone to avalanches and landslides, and there always seems to be some degree of work going on to try to mitigate their effects.

I always contended that of all the fjords that we’ve encountered in Iceland, Seyðisfjörður reminds me of a Norwegian fjord the most, and the tendency to have rock slides and avalanches certainly reinforces the point.

Authorities

Gufufoss resides in the East Region near Egilsstaðir, Iceland. It is administered by the municipality of Múlaþing. For information or inquiries about the general area as well as current conditions, you may want to try visiting their website

Gufufoss_001_08092021 - Context of Route 93 and Gufufoss as seen in August 2021
Gufufoss_003_08092021 - Approaching Gufufoss as the morning fog starts to clear in August 2021
Gufufoss_010_08092021 - Some kind of square platform fronting Gufufoss as seen in August 2021
Gufufoss_011_08092021 - Looking back at Mom catching up to me to check out Gufufoss during our visit in August 2021
Gufufoss_018_08092021 - As the fog continued to clear, we started to see some rainbows in the mist of Gufufoss
Gufufoss_040_08092021 - Somewhat long-exposed look at Gufufoss when the fog momentarily blocked out the sun in August 2021
Gufufoss_062_08092021 - Another look at Gufufoss and rainbow on our visit in August 2021
Gufufoss_064_08092021 - Mom checking out Gufufoss
Gufufoss_074_08092021 - Looking back at Gufufoss as we started to walk back to the pullout
Gufufoss_086_08102021 - The fog continuing to burn off as Gufufoss and rainbow were revealing more of themselves during our visit in August 2021
Gufufoss_095_08102021 - Looking upslope from Gufufoss at some other cascade coming down the cliffs in August 2021
Gufufoss_105_08102021 - More contextual look at the side cascade tumbling down the cliff and eventually feeding the Fjarðará downstream of Gufufoss as seen in August 2021
Gufufoss_115_08102021 - From the pullout, Gufufoss' rainbow was showing up on the other side of its drop (as seen in August 2021)
Drive_to_Studlagil_004_iPhone_08102021 - Some of the roadside waterfalls on the Fjarðará (which Gufufoss is on) as we were ascending west of Seyðisfjörður
Drive_to_Dettifoss_East_005_iPhone_08122021 - Partial views of other random waterfalls on the Fjarðará as we continued to ascend towards the Fjarðarheiði Pass
Seydisfjordur_072_07012007 - Looking against the light at Gufufoss on our first visit in July 2007
Seydisfjordur_071_07012007 - Giving the camera lens some relief from the bombardment of mist by looking downstream and taking advantage of the nice evening light on our July 2007 visit
Seydisfjordur_074_07012007 - Wall of mist at Gufufoss. Perhaps this shows why it was futile to get too close to the falls let alone try to shoot against the afternoon sun during that July 2007 visit
Seydisfjordur_051_07012007 - Distant look at the Efri (Upper) Úðafoss just downstream from Gufufoss
Seydisfjordur_057_07012007 - The sign for Neðri Úðafoss
Seydisfjordur_060_07012007 - View of both tiers of Úðafoss together during my July 2007 visit to Gufufoss
Seydisfjordur_061_07012007 - Focused on the Lower Úðafoss as seen in July 2007


The pullout for Gufufoss was a mere 3.2km west of the three-way intersection at the Seyðisfjörður town center (at the junction of Vesturvegur and Austurvegur) along Route 93.

Given the improvements that we saw to the pullout during our August 2021 visit, you really can’t miss it as it’ll be obvious once you see the falls to your left.

Drive_to_Dettifoss_East_006_iPhone_08122021 - Context of the pullout before Gufufoss along the Route 93
Context of the pullout before Gufufoss along the Route 93

Coming in the other direction, again, there will be a sizable pullout on the right about 21.3km east along the Route 93 from its junction with the Route 94.

It’s a little over 19km east of the car park for Fardagafoss.

For some geographical context, Seyðisfjörður is 27km (about 30 minutes drive) east of Egilsstaðir, 201km (about 2.5 hours drive) east of Mývatn, 274km (3.5 hours drive) east of Akureyri, 212km (about 3 hours drive) north of Höfn, 474km (about 6 hours drive) northeast of Vík, and 661km (8 hours drive) northeast of Reykjavík.

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360 degree sweep showing the falls with rainbow and then the fog that was pushing back


Semicircular sweep starting with the fog and then panning down the falls with a midge going across the lens


Slow sweep showing each cascade before settling on Gufufoss with faint rainbow

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Tagged with: seydisfjordur, egilsstadir, east region, austurland, iceland, waterfall, mulathing



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Visitor Reviews of this Waterfall:

Waterfalls between Egilsstaðir and Seyðisfjöður (Iceland) August 27, 2020 4:28 pm by Jose Luis Sanchez Esteban - Driving along the road that connects these cities I found an amount of waterfalls which names I always failed to know. Three of them are powerful enough to have one, and I guess that two may be Gufufoss and Múlafoss but I'm not sure of it. I can't identify your Gufufoss with any of them.… ...Read More

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