Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Epic Ride Reports
User Name
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 08-24-2010, 12:54 AM   #16
Coming in Hot.....
griffin146's Avatar
Joined: Sep 2009
Location: Malaysia
Oddometer: 139
Fantastic landscape

Manny goes for it, Iĺm taking pictures, wishing I had a fancy camera that could bank out 7+ frames a second instead of the 1 picture per 3 seconds the mine is doing
Your pics are so clear as it is .
What camera are you using ?
griffin146 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2010, 03:23 AM   #17
A Scouser from Crete
GZPainter's Avatar
Joined: Jan 2010
Location: Liverpool, Crete and wherever the road goes...
Oddometer: 163
Amazing photos!!!

I don't seems that , that island, has unbelievable landscape!!!
I was reading a month ago another RR from Iceland...and I was astonished from the photos!!

Keep on!!
GZPainter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2010, 03:50 AM   #18
GrundMake's Avatar
Joined: Nov 2009
Location: Perth Australia
Oddometer: 23
"History is written by the victors." Winston Churchill
"You have to understand that in Pakistan a life ban lasts only as long as the life of the ban" Pakistan Cricket Administrator
GrundMake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2010, 10:04 AM   #19
Weevil's Avatar
Joined: Apr 2009
Oddometer: 4
Birthday Boy

I'm "Manny", Barry's riding partner in this Iceland adventure. The "Weevil" is a reference to the V-Strom 650 that I ride at home.

Barry's doing such a good job telling the story, that I'm not going to interject unless there's some additional detail that I think is worth mentioning. The only thing that I would add to the narrative so far is that, in spite of having taken an "adventure riding" class and having gone on a couple of prep rides in the Seattle area, 99% of what I now know about off-road riding I learned in Iceland. Yes, we'd learned the basics, but until you have to ride through a strong river current or plow through 18" of dust-like sand, you don't know squat. In other words, we were pretty inexperienced for the route we chose. That said, the ride was challenging but do-able. I think that anyone with decent riding skills, some off-road experience and a good dose of courage/foolishness could do it, too.

Let me also second Barry's comments regarding the KLR and Yamaha that we rode. I'm glad that I was on a light bike instead of my V-Strom (100 lbs. heavier). The Wee might be light in comparison to a big Beemer, but it's a top-heavy beast compared to the 660R I was riding. I think a Yamaha WR250F might have been even better.

BTW, I've posted some of my (and Barry's) pictures on Picasa: Just ignore my "midnight golf" pictures taken before th MC trip started.
Weevil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2010, 01:57 PM   #20
Tripod's Avatar
Joined: Jul 2005
Location: NE by N
Oddometer: 1,160
Originally Posted by bc_seattle

Epic guys!

I hope one of you remembered to pack the playing cards?

Or is this when you introduce us to the female back-country icelandic hippie chicks?
"If I wanted someone to clean me up I'de find myself a maid"-Dawes

Tripod screwed with this post 08-24-2010 at 06:00 PM
Tripod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2010, 11:07 PM   #21
bc_seattle OP
Gnarly Adventurer
bc_seattle's Avatar
Joined: Mar 2009
Location: Seattle
Oddometer: 118
Tuesday evening.

Alright, stoves probably seem like a pretty boring topic but after a day and a half without a meal my stove had my full attention. I have a MSR Whisperlite Stove. Countless times my buddies fancier stoves had failed and mine could always be counted on. I’ve been an unpaid MSR Whisperlite spokesmodel for 20+ years. Ok so priming it is a bit of a hassle but IT ALWAYS WORKS. Now when I bought the Whisperlite a million years ago, I could have paid about 5 bucks more for the Whisperlite International. The Whisperlite runs on “white gas” or Coleman Camp Gas both of which I’ve recently learned is actually something called naphtha. Further confusing the issue, sometimes “white gasoline” refers to pure gasoline without additives which isn’t naphtha at all. All very confusing. The “International” version of my exact same stove runs on diesel, gas, white fuel, probably even dried boogers but apparently I didn’t have the $5 way back when.

While ubiquitous in North America, white gas is apparently in very short supply in Iceland or simply unavailable to foreigners. When you ask around about “white gas” in Iceland, you will receive confident assurances that “white gas” is very abundant and available at almost any service station under the label “grill v÷kvi.”

A useful reference link on camp fuels if you are traveling abroad:

Icelandic “grill v÷kvi” will not work in under any conditions in a MSR Whisperlite Stove. Swearing and ranting appear to have little impact on the volatility, or more accurately the lack of volatility of Icelandic “grill v÷kvi”.
If you drop a match in a puddle or cup of Icelandic “grill v÷kvi” the match will go out in a similar way to dropping a match in a glass of water.
Some traveling Americans, well practiced in the use of American grill starter fluid, cannot speculate as to even one practical use for Icelandic “grill v÷kvi”. This is likely a cultural shortcoming of the above referenced Americans and not in any way a deficiency of Icelandic “grill v÷kvi.”

My Icelandic Grill Fuel Conspiracy Theory:
In 2008 there were riots in Reykjavic as folks, rightly so, were pissed off at how things were going with the financial crisis, especially in Iceland.
My theory is that the Icelandic CIA equivelant (let’s call it the I-CIA) changed the ingredients of Icelandic “grill v÷kvi” after the 2008 riots so in order to limit the effects of Icelandic-grill-v÷kvi-cocktails (think Molotov cocktail) not foreseeing the detrimental impact it would have on two of their American allies traveling in the Highlands on motorcycle.
The I-CIA is apparently so secretive that you can find no mention of them on the Internet. The US CIA by comparison has their own website with flash movies which by the way won’t play on an iPhone or iPad. It is likely that the US CIA has a larger media budget than the I-CIA. By the way, the URL appears to be available.
My estimate is that the US CIA has 30,000 employees; the US has a population of 310 million. If Iceland’s CIA has the same employee to population ratio as the US they should have 29 employees.

But I digress.

So the next thing that happens is that it starts to rain and the wind picks up, and I mean picks up. As in picks up Manny’s tent, meager stakes and all and blows it away.

Here’s the thing: when my two perfect children were very young and outdoor adventuring was on a bit of a hold, I’d get my outdoor fix partly by reading adventure survival porn. Look up the Clint Willis Adrenaline series if you want a taste of what I'm talking about. I should instead have been reading “What to Expect – the Toddler Years” by Heidi Murkoff. Anyway, one of the characters that shows up with regularity in these stories, right before things get really bad, is the-blown-away-tent. Things going poorly? Just wait until you lose your tent, then you’ll know what “going poorly” means. The blown-away-tent thing also is featured from time to time in the Seattle Times which covers local backcountry stories. It is always bad when the tent is found before the people.

So when I’m sitting on my butt and then watch as Manny’s tent whips away at Warpspeed 2 Scottie I have a sinking feeling. I sprint after it which really isn’t much of a sprint at all. I’m wearing boots and running in volcanic sand. But fearing that my family may be soon reading the Seattle Times that they found our tent but not us, I’m giving it everything I have. I really don’t want to share my bivy sack with Manny, he’s 6’6” and I fear he’s a bit pissed at me over the whole situation. About a half of a mile away and as the tent was definitely leaving me in the dust, it snagged on the unlikeliest of rock outcroppings, one about as big as my pinkie finger. Battered and torn but we had the tent back.

My bivy sack which I love but no guest bedroom.

I’m a big fan of self reliance and self rescue so this next part is hard for me. It will soften the blow if some of you guys can make some demeaning comments here. What should have happened was that I rode on in the storm to get gas for my buddy Manny, then ran out of gas too, and then hiked out 25 – 50 miles through the night across sand with an empty stomach and then hitched hiked a bazillion kilometers or .621 bazillion miles to the nearest gas station then caught a ride with a group of crazy Australians back to Manny two day later who had resorted to trying to eat my Lonely Guide Iceland for sustenance.

Instead I made the mistake of… I’m really shamed about this part so bear with me… instead I made the cardinal mistake of using my rented satellite phone, yes you heard me correctly, of using my rented satellite phone (no tell me it isn’t so!) to call Ey■ˇr to ask him to maybe talk to the nearest gas station and see if they could inquire with any folks headed up to Askja if they might be able to haul some extra fuel and we’d be more than happy to pay with our devalued (or not devalued I can’t keep track) dollars. I have lame excuses which I’ll spare everyone as to why I had a rented sat phone with me and I will forever wear ribbons of shame for this.

The storm passed. I filled the dehydrated chili meal for two with cold water and lo-and-behold after 90 minutes or so we actually had a passable, albeit cold, meal. Manny beat my ass at cards and went to sleep. I called Ey■ˇr as he had asked me to at 10pm and he told me “no problem” that Icelandic Search and Rescue (what?! Icelandic Search and Rescue!!) had volunteered to bring us gas and was 30 miles or did he mean kilometers from our current position. NO NO NO!!! Ey■ˇr! LISTEN TO ME! Call them back and tell them to turn around! No way… I’m not going to be on the wrong end of an Icelandic Search and Rescue gas run for stupid foreigners… TELL THEM TO TURNAROUND, I WAS MISTAKEN, MANNY’S BIKE IS FULL OF FUEL THE GAS LIGHT MUST HAVE BEEN MALFUNCTIONING. To no avail… we were rescued around 11 pm with a wonderful sunset. I’m sure some French tourists died in the Icelandic backcountry because two dumbass American's had highly trained and incredibly valuable Icelandic rescue assets tied up shuttling gas to them.

The Icelandic Search and Rescue team couldn't have been nicer about the whole thing. They asked us if there was anything else we needed, Manny and I both looked at each other I'm sure thinking a pizza would be nice but I couldn’t bring myself to fess up that we didn’t have a working stove so we thanked them profusely and they went on their way. This team of three is all from the same home town (I think) and have conducted 61 rescues this year. I’m unclear if we count or not and can only hope that we don't. They also do ocean-based rescue and spend part of their time stationed on the coast if you were wondering.

perfect shot except for Manny's socks "drying" on his bike.

We wake up elated and guilty but with tanks full of gas and proceed to have some of the best riding you could ever ask. No pictures in the technical riding but then things slowed down and I was more active with the camera. And as the song goes, "every rose has a thorn..." Icelandic Highland thorn = sand. Some packed and easy. Miles and miles of not so easy.

Still to come:
Nudity, hitchhiking women, weird lakes in volcanoes.

bc_seattle screwed with this post 08-25-2010 at 12:06 AM
bc_seattle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2010, 11:15 PM   #22
bc_seattle OP
Gnarly Adventurer
bc_seattle's Avatar
Joined: Mar 2009
Location: Seattle
Oddometer: 118

Griffin146 -- The camera is a Canon G11 which is a great travel camera. I haven't mastered quick action shots with it and have a couple of nits but all in all would highly recommend it. I especially love the old school manual nobs that allow me to wreck my exposures so easily.
GZPainter -- I agree!
And hello Manny!
bc_seattle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2010, 11:21 PM   #23
Rich Moran
Joined: Nov 2004
Oddometer: 18
I'd suppose stops for Mocha would be too much to ask for.

Your survival skills, no shame?
Rich Moran is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-24-2010, 11:58 PM   #24
bc_seattle OP
Gnarly Adventurer
bc_seattle's Avatar
Joined: Mar 2009
Location: Seattle
Oddometer: 118

Originally Posted by Tripod
Epic guys!

Or is this when you introduce us to the female back-country icelandic hippie chicks?
Tripod, I haven't forgotten you. All things in good time.
bc_seattle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2010, 12:18 AM   #25
Always moving
IĐAKI_'s Avatar
Joined: Aug 2010
Location: A Coru˝a, Spain
Oddometer: 76
Originally Posted by bc_seattle

Very nice NO road
IĐAKI_ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2010, 02:30 AM   #26
AntsMcMurdosch's Avatar
Joined: Aug 2009
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Oddometer: 15
Subscribed! I hope to do this one day too
AntsMcMurdosch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2010, 07:55 AM   #27
Weevil's Avatar
Joined: Apr 2009
Oddometer: 4
On gas and sand

A little more color to add to Barry's yarn: when I ran out of gas, it was not 10 or 20 miles short of the next gas station; it was more like 100! We'd filled up at the wrong station, but it was maybe 40 miles too early - we would have run out of gas anyway. Why? Because you don't get 45-50 mpg when you're in 2nd gear thumping up boulders and slowly negotiating loose gravel. The route is way too optimistic regarding refueling. MAYBE, if we did it again, getting gas in the right place and riding more confidently (as we subsequently did), we'd make it. Moral of the story: carry extra gas and (sorry) NEVER PASS GAS. This is especially important when you're on a strange bike whose mileage and gas gauge behavior is unfamiliar to you.

Barry, I hope you're going to recount the sand passage. From a riding perspective, it accounted for all of our falls.
Weevil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2010, 08:40 AM   #28
Canadian - eh!
shepoutside's Avatar
Joined: Nov 2004
Location: somewhere in Ontario, between many Great Lakes !
Oddometer: 168
Wicked Pics for sure, thanks for sharing !!
15 Truimph Scrambler
02_Honda XR650r
85 Honda XL600r
><((((║< <║))))>< Kevin
shepoutside is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2010, 08:54 AM   #29
littleDONKEY's Avatar
Joined: Dec 2009
Location: Thessaloniki, Greece
Oddometer: 56
Thumb Iceland...


Thanks for sharing with us...
Safe Riding!!!!
littleDONKEY is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-25-2010, 09:10 AM   #30
Beastly Adventurer
MZcountryboy's Avatar
Joined: Apr 2005
Location: Northeast Kingdom, Vermont USA (close to Canada!)
Oddometer: 5,468

Great story -

MZcountryboy is offline   Reply With Quote


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

Times are GMT -7.   It's 10:58 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2015