Around Iceland on a Recumbent Tandem

(A world premier?)


The idea came to me in April 2003 in South Carolina while on a visit with our daughter pursuing her studies at Clemson University. While waiting for her to finish her work in the laboratory, Anne and I spent our time writing e-mails and surfing on the Internet in the library. It is there that I came across pictures of Iceland and the appeal of this country became gradually irresistible. Anne kept her distances with my plans of spending our summer holidays there, especially when I started evoking the idea of cycling around the island without assistance and even more so with the idea of trundling tent, cookers, clothing, and food on our almost new tandem (bought September 2002). But gradually, the phase of viral incubation became a full blown infection and here we were launched on an insane adventure. Insane because Anne in particular, had little training (700 km only accumulated before our departure on July 30, 2003) and neither of us had any experience of outings on a bicycle exceeding 3 days and even less under weather conditions as extreme as those that can be encoutered in this Scandinavian country. Beings rookies, we tried to be as thorough as possible in our preparations not only logistical (endless trips to sporting goods stores, design and construction of a bicycle box tailor made for the tandem to be sure it would arrive unscathed) but also psychological (readings of very many Internet sites and 3 guides: Gallimard, Guide du Routard, and Lonely Planet). Here is our account of the challenge which we launched out on (the lines written in italics are written by Anne):

Anne and Yves DESTRUBÉ August 2003

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