Part 8

Day 12

All night I’ve been thinking about hot dogs in Myvatn so I get up super early and swiftly cover remaining 50 kilometers. Icelanders are very proud of their hot dogs and rightly so… I eat three :) I would easily swallow some more but was too embarrassed to queue up for the fourth time…

The place is swarmed by little flies, I’ve never seen a plague like this before. See below for a romantic dinner – me, noodles and flies at the back of the tourist information center:

I’m soon joined by two gentlemen – Gili from Israel and The Man With The Wolf Flag from Ireland. Gili (short bloke behind his huge backpack) is an extreme solo hiker, having just finished his month long walk in Greenland he is preparing for some more walking (North to South) in Iceland. Once again I’m surprised how small this place is – Gili met Toby (German hiker I met in Nydyilur) who couple of days ago was shopping for a new tent in Akureyri.  The Man With The Wolf Flag was a bit more complicated affair and neither Gili nor myself could quite figure out why is he walking on the asphalt road West to South whith big heavy flag with a wolf painted on it.

Man with the flag grabs his flag says good bye and walks away. Gili and I agree to meet for a beer in the evening. Now all I need to do is to go to the local swimming pool (they have one in every village here) and relax in the sauna.

 Day 13

I open my eyes just to close them shut immediately blinded by the sun. My brain trying to figure out why there is no usual redness of my tent sheet between me and the sky above. I look down at my body – it is lying neatly in the cocoon of my sleeping bag, mild headache unable to kill the beauty of the spot. Looks like few beers made me too lazy to pitch a tent last night so I just walked away from the road in search of a grassy spot. To my horror surprise I woke up right next to this pretty little canyon :)

Yesterday in the information center I was recommended a hike so I am catching a bus which takes me to the top of a nearby volcanic formations. 

From here I slowly walk down back to the village… Look closely at the image below, perhaps you can find one shy bird there.

Back in the village I find this:

It’s a 1976 Ford Bronco as seen in the ‘Into The Wild’ movie.

Speaking of cars… Since off road driving in Iceland is forbidden during summer months people try to enjoy winter driving as much as they can. Hence subtle tire/suspension modifications like seen on this Ford van: 

or this nearly standard Jeep Grand Cherokee:

 

I will come back to cars later but now I say hello to my bike and goodbye to Myvatn.. Having walked whole day I’m very keen to do some proper mountain biking so I take a small path that runs roughly in the right direction…

After a bit of a struggle with loaded bike (3 fences to cross) I arrive at Grottagia:

It’s a cave filled with super hot water. Feels like more than 50 deg celsius (guidebook) and transition from 7 deg windy air is quite a shock so I only take a short dip.

I come back to the ring road and after few kilometers turn left to visit Dimmu Borgir (Icelandic for Dark Castles), weird lava towers formed 2300 years ago. And because I hate when such a lovely grim place is turned into a touristic attraction with cafes, little wooden fences and hundreds of information boards, I pull out my weapon and play ukulele cover of Devil’s Path from the band called, yes you’ve guessed it – Dimmu Borgir!

Note devilish chord progression captured on the photo above. In appreciation of my performance German family together with elderly Swiss couple briefly form a mosh pit in front of me. After I’m done I pack my instrument and head back to my bike… I cycle for an hour or so an set a camp behind big rock.

Day 14

 

It’s the last cycling day so despite pouring rain I make the most out of it.

I drop down to 10 km/h on the uphill just to reach 65.8km/h on the downhill LOL

To my surprise I got to Akureiri (100km) in about 5 hours and managed to catch evening bus to Reykjavik. After a beautiful 5 hours bus ride I arrive at the heart of the famous Reykjavik Friday party night. I check into Salvation Army hostel and then walk around city center till 3 am.

Day 15

In the morning I make a series of interesting discoveries. First the city is cleaned up after all night party mess.

Second: there is pleasant lack of gold in a local church…

And third one needs some introduction. You see I was cycling across Iceland and saw many signs and information boards in different languages. Most of them in Icelandic, English and German but occasionally there were some cultural adjustments. For example signs forbidding off-road driving were mostly in Italian and Germans were never reminded about keeping places clean etc. Well in my hostel kitchen I found one in Polish: 

 

All packed I go for a last stroll around town…

 

In a dock warehouse I find this:

Small Land Cruiser under construction. Chris – mechanic engineer has been working on his toy for 2 years. Widened rims ready for huge tires, electronic controlled pneumatic suspension all around and 4.2 turbo diesel swap!

 

I catch a bus to the airport with a stop at the Blue Lagoon along the way…

 

So sadly the trip is over but wait …. Snare roll!!!!!! Time has come to prove that apart from all the self portraying there was actually some cycling done as well :)

 

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3 thoughts on “Part 8

  1. Thank you to share with us all these very nice pictures!
    It looks like a great adventure!
    I like the fact that it was some cycling done as well!:)
    Looking forward to the next ones and the next ukelele sound track!;)
    xx

    • Thanks Steve,
      If you are using gas canisters for cooking ask for some at the airport information desk on your arrival…. they have shelf full of leftovers! Unfortunately I learned that when I was leaving my full canister with them :)

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