Only a few days to go until we leave, and am I glad about that?! Planning, packing and training for this trip has been seriously time consuming and quite hard work. That’s not to say I haven’t enjoyed it, but I don’t think I’ve spent this long working on anything before.
It doesn’t help that we’ve had some spanners thrown into the machinery along the way. What with the eruption of Holuhraun, John quitting the team, the fact that parts of the interior of Iceland are still a no go areas (more on this in a bit) and that Jim is only just recovering from Labyrinthitis. I’m not entirely sure what Labyrinthitis is; something to do with wearing a super-tight jodphurs and having the hots for a 15 year old Jennifer Connelly I think? Could be wrong.
Along the way I’ve learned a huge amount. Not least that hubris is a sure fire way to look like a tool. Anyone who (foolishly) reads my blog will know that when we dreamed up the idea (September last year I think), we were half convinced that no-one had done this before. Ha! What fools. But at least it shows that the idea was a pure one; that we weren’t mindlessly following a guidebook.
In all likelihood what we’re proposing has been done many times before, perhaps even on a fatbike? Certainly most of the constituent parts have been, many of them are already recorded for posterity right here on this website. I’ve even been in contact with a few of the people who’ve been before. All of whom, without fail, have been helpful, enthusiastic and kind. There’s no suggestion that they’re somehow experts, or that we’re to be looked down upon. They’re just stoked about what we’re trying to do.
So. On Thursday (16th July) we jump on a plane from Bristol to Keflavik, and assuming the douchebaggage handlers don’t fold our bikes in half, we’ll set off on our little adventure. But even now, with four days to go, we still can’t be sure of our route. Apparently Iceland has had an especially hard winter, and parts of the interior highlands are still closed to traffic due to melting snow and thawing conditions. As a result our prefered route is still in doubt. There are a couple of alternatives, so all is not lost, but they’re either a compromise or quite a bit further and we probably wont have time. This other effect is the increased likelihood we ride a hundred kilometers through tough terrain, only to find that there’s a river too deep to ford and we have to turn around.
Oh well, I guess we just fly out and see what happens when we get there. I’m sure we can wing it.
If you’re super-bored you can track our route live using the link below. Cheers. Tom