A fascinating folklore love story gave name to this canyon

  • Spectacular nature meets captivating folklore
Nov 5 2015

Torfafhlaup is a fascinating place where spectacular nature meets captivating folklore.  Deep in the Icelandic Highland you will find this captivating canyon, Torfahlaup; named after a young man named Torfi.  He had fallen in love with a daughter of a wealthy farmer that also was his master. 

Because of her father's disapproval of the relationship they had to flee to the Highland. A household manager on the farm followed them to the mountains.  Near the canyon their horses, Blési and Faxi, became exhausted and died.  Torfi and the young woman managed to reach the canyon and on the edge of desperation and left with only one option, Torfi took his dear fiancé in his arm and jumped over the canyon.

When the household manager reached the other side, Torfi urged him to jump over, which he did.  Unfortunately, he managed to jump only to the edge where he grabbed a tree.  The young woman begged Torfi to cut the tree where the household manager held to his life. Torfi did not hesitate, and the household manager fell in the canyon and lost his life.  They continued their walk and moved deeper into the mountains near Torfajökull, Torfa-glacier.

In the whole area at Syðri Fjallabak in the mysterious Icelandic Highland, many places bear the name of Torfi. A glacier, the canyon, a mountain and other places. Two mountains also bear the names of the exhausted horses, Blési and Faxi. Most of the names in the Icelandic landscape have a story attached to the name.

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