Cycling while leaning 10 degrees or so from vertical into a crosswind. It’s a curious sensation. Your senses are screaming that things are all wrong, that you should fall and your shoulder slam into the tarmac.
But correct the sensory anomaly and adopt the regular, perpendicular stance, and you will hit the deck as the relentless wind pushes you onto a shoulder of gravel at the side of the road.
Iceland’s winds… I’d been warned, but nothing prepares you that blast of air of the North Atlantic. It can slow your pace to a crawl (or a walk), bludgeon you and, on a good day, push you along the road and see you reaching for an elusive higher gear. The wind can destroy Iceland’s roads, tearing up loose macadam (where the roads are sealed, of course).
It’s a stern test, particularly for the solo tourist, but my word is it worth it.
Iceland is all I’d hoped it would be: Dramatic coastline, mountains, glaciers, waterfalls, geothermal incongruities, the barren interior… not to mention its charming, if diminutive, capital city.
I’ve done a rough cut of the photos and will be posting shortly. As ever, it’s not great to be back.