About Snaedalsfoss (Hamarsafoss)
Snædalsfoss (or Hamarsafoss) is a fairly thick and conspicuous waterfall that we happened to notice while driving the Ring Road through the Eastfjords.
We happened to notice this waterfall on our first visit to Iceland in 2007 when we did the Ring Road in a clockwise manner.
However, when we passed by this area a second time in August 2021, we actually tried to see if it was possible to get a closer look instead of the distant view we wound up getting on that first visit.
So on the second visit, we drove down an unpaved road called Bragðavallavegur, which was on the same side of the river as the falls, and it ultimately brought us to the Bragðavellir Farm and Cottages.
Since we weren’t staying here, we really had no business in stopping here and looking to hike through their property to the falls, which was about 1.3km away.
Thus, we backtracked to the Ring Road again, and then we took the next road labeled Hamarssel on my Gaia GPS map, which we took to a familiar informal pullout with a view across the Hamarsá River towards Snædalsfoss.
By the way, I believe this waterfall also went by the name Hamarsafoss because of the presence of the fairly large Hamarsá River.
Anyways, since we wanted to see if there was a legal way to get closer to the falls than just looking across the river at it, we had noticed there was a footbridge over the Hamarsá River.
However, when I got onto that bridge, I noticed that it looked like it was crumbling and unmaintained.
Furthermore, I noticed some fencing infrastructure on its far side essentially discouraging public access to go any further (the falls was still 1.4km away from the bridge).
Thus, we had to be content with our distant views across the river just like on our first visit back in 2007, but at least the local dog made its way towards us and kept us company for a bit.
Snædalsfoss resides in the East Region near Djúpivogur, 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.
The nearest town of any significant size to Snædalsfoss is the small coastal town of Djúpivogur so I’ll describe the driving directions from there.
Starting from Djúpivogur, we’d drive back towards the Ring Road (roughly 1.3km) before turning left onto the Ring Road.
Then, we’d drive on the Ring Road for about 10km before turning right onto an unsigned (at least both times we’ve been here in 2007 and 2021) road on the right (before the long bridge).
That unsigned road is labeled Hamarssel on my topo map, where we’d then follow it roughly 700m towards a bend in the road, where we found an informal pullout.
This pullout is within view of the old bridge I described in this write-up, and I suspect that it might have been a road going over that bridge at one point.
In any case, this drive would take about 15 minutes.
If you’re coming from Höfn in the other direction, then we’d drive 5km back to the Ring Road before turning right onto the Ring Road.
From there, we’d drive 87km, where we’d cross the bridge over Hamarsá and then turn left onto the unpaved Hamarssel Road and follow it for roughly 700m to the informal pullout for a distant view of the falls.
Finally, if you’re interested in checking out the Bragðavellir Cottages, then we’d return from Hamarssel back to the Ring Road, cross the long bridge, and then make the first turn on the right to reach the property.
Just to give you a little bit of perspective on distances, Djúpivogur is about 104km (about 90 minutes drive) east of Höfn, 85km (about 90 minutes drive) south of Egilsstaðir, 297km (about 4 hours drive) east of Kirkjubæjarklaustur, 331km (about 4.5 hours drive) southeast of Akureyri, and 552km (over 7 hours drive) east of Reykjavík.
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