Two days of the forgotten lagoon – who was the one who got lost?

What to do when you are lost and no other vehicles exist? How about go on a round of golf? Travel across five islands on a wooden, evergreen buggy while jogging along a well-marked…

Two days of the forgotten lagoon - who was the one who got lost?

What to do when you are lost and no other vehicles exist? How about go on a round of golf? Travel across five islands on a wooden, evergreen buggy while jogging along a well-marked path

On October 4, British-Icelandic cameraman Jon Raun pulled into the picturesque Westman Islands, 585 miles north-east of Reykjavik. He decided to take a look at the Tyrellsia Hotel’s indoor lagoon, built to resemble a sunken Viking ship, which appears on the hotel’s website.

But for a coastguard, why would he try to climb the hill up to the lagoon? Unlike a castle, it did not need protective walls or signs.

“I went up the hill and I was looking for a clearing, but I saw no lights. There was nothing but darkness. It was really dark, really scary,” said Jon.

The hills changed and thick lava seemed to penetrate the rock walls, and Jon had to keep running along the road. He could only see a faint outline of the lagoon.

Only the ground surrounding a stream was visible. It looked as if there was no place to run in the dark.

Jon could not get down to the lagoon. The mountain terrain seemed to take much longer than he had expected, and at one point he gave up and began jogging.

He kept feeling more and more stressed. He just wanted to sleep. He looked at a map and realised he was 50km (31 miles) from the nearest access road.

Jon began to run on wind, sand and water. In the next two hours he ran across five islands, on a wooden evergreen buggy.

Jon’s route took him past enormous lava flows which rose in places two metres (6ft) high. Jon was extremely excited when he finally reached the hotel lagoon. He was the first one to reach it. But when he returned to the airport to fly back to Reykjavik, he found there was no sign of the lagoon.

Five days later he began to ruminate on the route he had taken. He had driven through a forest which ran for kilometres and had to climb to the top of a mountain to get to the lagoon. The ski roads were treacherous. He had run through a loose rock island which was just a thin layer of snow.

In every way he had acted as if he had been driven on a challenge, perhaps because of his ordeal. When he finally stopped running on the lagoon he felt relieved, but not pleased. He wanted to find a path he would not lose.

“It was a brilliant day at a wonderful hotel. Of course it was also a horrible day. I missed the lagoon. My footprints on the way down were the only visible physical remnants of my attempt.

“I asked if I could be given his materials for a new battery-operated cable watch, but he said there were no more road builders available for this kind of thing.”

Jon admitted that he had been forced into a way of finding out more about the lagoon, but that he had decided that it was better to be lost in search of a great lake than quietly terrified of an unseen obstacle.

· The journey was part of an expedition to raise funds for Sentebale, a charity which supports children with HIV.

· Follow travel writer Helen Pidd’s journey back to the Blue Planet and on her blog, Helen Pidd’s Island Tour,

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