Most of the more impressive natural geothermal pools in Iceland are in the highland. In places that are remote and difficult to visit unless you are prepared to take a long drive and a long hike. These are places where boiling hot geothermal springs meet cold creeks, sometimes the origin of the water is side by side. Sometimes the pair of springs, hot and cold, blend and form a natural pound filled with warm water in the middle of nowhere. One of those remarkable places is Strútslaug or the Ostrich pool. The origins of the name is a mystery as there are no Ostrich in Iceland and have never been.
Visiting Strútslaug geothermal pool takes some hiking
Strútslaug is one of the most remote geothermal pools that are accessible in Iceland. It is located deep in the highland and requires few hours drive in a robust and well equipped 4X4 vehicle. It is placed near the Highland road Syðri Fjallabak that 's hard to drive and access. Near the beautiful mountain Mælifell, there is a turn to the north to Strútur Mountain and mountain hut. From the hut is an approximately 5 kilometers hike to the pool. So the hike including the dip in the pool takes about four to five hours. But the hike is through a beautiful landscape by the mountain Strútur.
How to go to Strúslaug
To enter the area called Fjallabak Syðri, you can take one of six Highland roads. All are difficult roads with rivers to cross or steep mountains to climb. One of the easiest routs is from the Ring Road east of Vík where you turn north on Hrífunesvegur Nr. 209. Just a few kilometers up the road you take a turn west on Öldufellsleið F232 mountain road. Near Brytalækir there is a sign leading west to Mælifell mountain on Mælifellssandur. You drive past the mountain Mælifell over the river Brennivínskvísl and take a turn north on the dirt road to Strútur. The whole trip is about 50 kilometers on a rough dirt road that requires a good and well equipped 4X4 vehicle.