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Iceland

Old 11-23-03, 06:14 AM
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Iceland

Well after the trip through Canada last year I reccon that I'll try & spend some time cycling around Iceland in 2004. The idea is to stick to the road going around the island, detouring off, along smaller roads & exploring various peninsulars.

I'm looking at going out there in June & returning mid July, (approx 6 weeks)

Has anybody toured up there or got any info that might help me.

Mick
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Old 11-23-03, 07:56 AM
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Both Bicycling and Adventure Cycling magazines have done stories on cycletouring iceland. That would be a good place to start.
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Old 11-23-03, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Mick
Well after the trip through Canada last year I reccon that I'll try & spend some time cycling around Iceland in 2004. The idea is to stick to the road going around the island, detouring off, along smaller roads & exploring various peninsulars.

I'm looking at going out there in June & returning mid July, (approx 6 weeks)

Has anybody toured up there or got any info that might help me.

Mick

Mick, while I haven't been to Iceland yet, but heading that way eventually, wanted to wish you happy planning stages and a wonderful trip... Be sure to post travelogues (I use this one, you can check out mine: https://bicycle_girl.crazyguyonabike.com ) cheers Kati
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Old 11-23-03, 09:20 PM
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Originally Posted by bicycle_girl
Mick, while I haven't been to Iceland yet, but heading that way eventually, wanted to wish you happy planning stages and a wonderful trip... Be sure to post travelogues (I use this one, you can check out mine: https://bicycle_girl.crazyguyonabike.com ) cheers Kati
HI Kati,

Welcome to the forums. I just got through reading your Alps travelogue from earlier this year. Excellent stuff, with some awesome photos!
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Old 08-20-04, 10:29 AM
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Hi all,

Thought that I'd add an update to this post to let you know how it went. I had left the planning loose & flexible & only really finalised my route when I was lay on my back catching the rays at the Keflavik Campsite ( town near to airport), after assembling my bike (Daws Galaxy). The plan - anti clockwise. Simple, this planning lark isn't it ! Next day I took myself for a short practice ride around the Midnes Peninsular, passing back through Keflavik then out around the tip of Rekjanes to Grindavik, along gravel roads. Lost the use of my gears early on ! Next along to Krysuvik however with a broken chain before I got there I ended up camping in a rather nice lava feild. Reykjavik beconed, more overly ......a repair shop. Got the bike sorted & headed out again. The ride out of the city was FUN, if you like traffic. I'm mad, so my psychiatrist tells me & liked the buzz.

So I was now on the Ring Road heading SE. I passed through Hveragerdi. Here they grow fruit & veg in huge greenhouses heated by Geothermal power. Saw a natural geysir there to, wonderful. I then headed into the Tourist region of the 'Goldern Circle' heading out to 'Thingvellir' (Site of the original parliment), Geysir (to see the Geysir) & nearby Gulfoss (waterfall). Most of this was on paved roads but some were gravel, no problems really.

Back on the Ring Road I headed around to the area near Porsmork, where I took a bus into the area. Totally unsuitable to cycle in due to the two fords of rivers, and the large lumps of gravel used as a road (in reality its a glacial riverbed), the scenery however was stunning. When sat in the Reykjavik Campground awaiting the repair to my cycle I spoke to a Scottish lad who had seen the worst of the wind in the shape of a three day storm down in Vik. Just beyond there, after a fantastic 150 Km wind Assisted day, I had a nightmare of a ride accross the Sandur (desert) from Kirkuju to Skaftafell. Wind against me, EVEN WITH direction changes ! Hard day in featureless terrain. I was now at the SW corner of Vantajokull Glacier. It would take me 4 days to pass out of its sphere of influence, it is that big.

Jokulsarlon, well what can you say about a lagoon that's packed with icebergs.... I certainly cannot give it justice with my limited vocabulary ! In Hofn I saw a German Lad who took the northern route (met in the Reykjavik campsite). We exchanged information about the route we had both travelled.

I travelled up & back along the lower Easrtern Fjords, where from Reydarfjordur I took the inland road to Egilstardir, the largest Eastern town. These fjords were nice, each had a settlement, with shop etc & free campsites. From Egilstardir I had to cross to Reykihild (Myvatn area). I had a 'mare. Initially all went well, then a great ride down a valley. After a hill I was up onto the moorland & desert, the wind was undescribable...... well without using expletives !!!!! Struggle, was what I did for endless hours. Were a stubbon race us Brits ! Nearly collapsed into an Emergency Hut, made a brew & some noodles & then went back out into the fray ! Scenery was stunning in places, I could of been on the Moon. I got into Myvatn the next day & spent a few days doing the tourist sites like Krafla (an active Volcano) & numerous other older volcanic sites, wonderful.

Out of here I crossed over to Akureri (crap campsite in the middle of town) then headed out along the gravel roads around the Trollaskagi, Skagi & Vatnes peninsulars. Here I encountered a 3.2 Km tunnel, glacial valleys, dinner in a Mtn Hut, Sea Arches, views of offshore islands, Seal colonies. Idilic area.

Next up I headed out along the Snaefellsnes Peninsula along to Snaefellsjokull, made famous by Jules Vern -'Journey to the centre of the Earth'. The gravel beyond Hellisandur was bad but passable. The colony of Arctic Terns were fun by Rif. Selected ones bombed me, great when your wearing a cycling hat.

At Borgarnes I went into Upper Borgarfjordur & then along the Kaldidalur, a 4 x4 road. Good laugh, this was, ending with a nights kip in an Emergency Shelter. The areas just stunning......if your into remoteness & hills/mtns. Probably not so much if your into your comforts ...... Mc Donnalds etc ! After this it took me an easy day back to the outskirts of Reykjavik, then into town & the end the next day.

To sum up. Well, well worth it. Such a diverse place. Saw alot of other cyclists, I certainly wasn't on my own. I would almost certainly go back to, maybe the interior routes next time in conjunction with the Wesrtfjords. So if your looking for ideas, get yourself over to Iceland & don't forget to pack your sence of humour, comes in handy when the wind picks up.

Mick
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Old 08-20-04, 10:42 AM
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Wow, sounds like a great adventure! I've always thought about going to Iceland- I've only done stopovers in Iceland heading for Sweden, but I will definitely look hard at going out there for an extended stay.

I need to move to Europe, I think.

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Old 08-20-04, 02:00 PM
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If you're interested in reading about another cyclist's experience in Iceland, check out Curtis Marr's journal about his month-long tour of Iceland in 2002. The journal includes both text and some fabulous photos.
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