It is as wintery as can be, snow everywhere and thick slabs of ice that probably won’t melt until who knows when. Despite this the Blackbird has begun singing, a sure sign of the changing of the seasons. So we can not but be hopeful that spring will come this year also. In the twilight at around six o’clock in the afternoon it’s beautiful vocal song can be heard in the neighbourhood.
Gjáin in Thjórsárdalur is a paradise of a place. It is a ravine, or narrow valley, with waterfalls, cold springs, interesting lava formations, caves and lush vegetation. The area is an oasis in vast contrast to the surrounding areas. The River Thjórsá flowed there in olden days forming the ravine.
The place is easy to reach in the summertime, about one and a half hours drive from Reykjavík and only a very short drive from the main road in Thjórsárdalur. It can be reached from two angles and both routes involve some hiking along footpaths or down rather steep paths.
The footpath takes you by the historic Viking farm Stöng . Visitors should trod carefully because of the fragile vegetation which is easily susceptible to deterioration by trampling.
The Goldfinch is holding on and seems full of energy. It is amazing to see how tough this bird is. There has been a blizzard and the frost has been down to – 12°C and the Goldfinch does not even roughen its feathers. We first saw the Goldfinch in the garden January 24 and it has been an almost daily guest since then.
Usually the display of Northern Lights is most common in September and October and in late February and March. For some reason there is less chance of seeing them in the darkest months of the year i.e. in December and January.
Thursday night on my way home I noticed some Northern Lights and stopped to take these photoes.
If all winter days could be like this. Clear blue skies and the river, with the sky reflected in it, as blue as it can be . These are the days for skying and skating. One fault though is that the ozone layer over the country is at its thinnest now so every one is advised to use sun blocker.
The Goldfinch is still in Selfoss and coming every day to our garden. There was some concern that a Merlin had caught it last weekend. A Merlin made a swift attack and caught a bird but thankfully it was not the Goldfinch as we thought. The next day it appeared again in the garden with the group of Redpolls.
The Goldfinch is staying in the company of Redpolls behaving as they do and eating the same feed. In the last few days it has had to endure a blizzard, frost down to – 13°C and the attacks of a Merlin and a Short-eared Owl.