Thor made ready for a journey in such haste that he took with him neither his goat pulled chariot or his companions. He also decided to travel outside of Asgard disguised as a young boy. That evening he came upon a Giant named Hymir. Thor stayed there that night , and in the early morning Hymir awoke, got dressed and readied himself to go fishing in his rowboat. Thor too readied himself and asked Hymir if the Jotun would let him go rowing with him. Hymir laughed and told the youth that he would not be much help because he was such a little scrap of a young fellow. " You will catch cold if you sit as long and as far out to sea as I usually go ! " Hymir replied. Thor, however, replied that he : " Would be able to row far out from the shore, and that it was not certain which of the two would be the first to demand to be rowed back. " At one point Thor became so angry that he was ready to swing his hammer at Hymir and crush the Jotun' s head. Instead to show his patience he asked Hymir what he would be using for bait. Hymir did not answer, but told the youth to get his own bait.
Thor then walked over to a herd of oxen belonging to Hymir, and struck the head off of the largest ox, which was called Sky - Bellower. Thor walked back down to the shore with the head and jumped into the row boat which Hymir had already launched. Thor sat in the stern, took up the oars and began to row with great power. Hymir was surprised at the rapid progress they made as they quickly entered deeper water. They rowed out until Hymir said that they had come to the banks where he usually caught a great number of flatfish. Thor protested, however, and told Hymir that he wanted to row much further out. Hymir reluctantly agreed, and they had another good bout of hard rowing. When they stopped Hymir looked around with concern and said : " It will be dangerous to sit here on account of the Midgard Serpent ." Thor brushed off such a remark, and continued to row out into ever deeper waters. Hymir was not pleased at how far out into the sea they had gone.
When Thor finally put up his oars he used a very strong line, and a firm hook to bait the ox head upon. He then threw it overboard, and waited for the line to go slack as it hit the bottom. On this occasion Thor made as big a fool of the Midgard Serpent as Utgard - Loki had made of him. When the bait was taken and the line began to run Thor set the hook, which stuck fast in the roof of the great monster. When Jormungand realized it was caught it turned away as hard as he could which knocked Thor' s fists up against the gunwale. Thor's eyes turned red and lightning flashed across the sky as Thor grew angrier and angrier. Using all of his divine strength he dug his heels so hard into the bottom of the boat that they went clear through. Thor then stretched out his feet until the hit the sea floor. Slowly the Thunder God drew up the sea serpent until the serpent' s head was on board the small craft. For a moment Thor and the monster glared into each others eyes. The serpent roared and belched out deadly poisons that narrowly missed the Prince of Asgard.
Hymir cowered in the bow of the boat terrified by the events that were unfolding before his very eyes. His face lost all color, and he turned a ghostly pale as the writhing serpent tumbled into and back out of the small boat. Thor gripped the line tighter and when he had the great snake right where he wanted it he raised his hammer to kill the great beast. At that very moment Hymir, who could not take anymore, fumbled for his knife and cut Thor's line off at the gunwale, and the monster sank slowly back into the sea. Thor, in desperation , threw his hammer at the beast, and some people say that it struck the beast' s head clear off. But the truth is that the great serpent still lurks in the depths waiting for the end of time.Thor was so angry that he clenched his fist and hit Hymir so hard that he fell overboard head first. Thor waded ashore knowing that he had missed a great opportunity to rid Midgard of a terrible horror.
In this version the sole purpose of the Thunder God seems to be to redeem himself for his embarrassment at the hands of Utgard - Loki, by killing the Midgard Serpent, Jormungand. The actual catching of the sea monster is told here in much more vivid detail than in the Lay of Hymir, and here you are clearly told that it got away, which makes sense if it is to participate in the final battle known as Ragnarok.
Next : Utgard - Loki
Go with Odin's wisdom, Freyja' s love, and Thor' s protection !