Day 49 – 7/11

With the white nights and people in the campground being rambunctious I couldn’t sleep again. I got up around 4:30 am, to the sound of rain hitting the tent. I really didn’t want to get out but the forecast for the next few days was similar – rainy. Hence, I did get out, packed up a wet tent, loaded the bags and went into the rain.

It was raining for the first 2-3 hours then it stopped for a while. At that time I arrived at the first point on the Golden Ring – Thingvillir National Park. It’s the place where Iceland is being pulled apart by tectonic plates and it is very visible. It’s also the place of the first European Parliament, dating from the 800’s. Then there was the Geysir, the original one. By the time I got there it was noon and busloads of tourist were coming. The actually Geysir isn’t active anymore but the one next to it is. It spews water every few minutes, so I got to see that a couple of times while I was there. It began to rain again and by the time I got to Gullfos, one of the most spectacular waterfalls in Iceland, I was completely soaked. There were nearby hostel/campings but the hostel was booked and I didn’t want to pitch my tent while it was raining. I decided to go to the nearest village 25 km away. At that time I already clocked in 117km, but oh well. There was nothing there so I moved to my next option, the town I was supposed to stay the following day, another 47 km away. Meanwhile, the battery of my GPS device has died. Only I was still going, like the Duracell bunny. By the time I reached Selfoss, there were only 53km left to Reykjavik and I briefly entertained the idea to go there and be done with it. But by now I was pedaling for close to eleven hours and my legs just couldn’t do it anymore.

I now can barely walk. Were the attractions worth the effort and suffering? Questionable. But who knows when I’ll be here next time to see Iceland’s natural wonders. I really wanted to like what I saw but I simply wasn’t impressed by this particular group of sights nor the surrounding landscape. I found it rather monotonous. If we return someday, we’ll go further into the country to see the other things people are raving about.

Today in numbers:
198 km – distance covered
10h42m – riding time
7th – and final country on my list is checked off