Lincoln Logs and Barbies

a roaming love letter from the appalachian trail and the wild wild west
Viking stout = definitely top 3 beers of all time. That glacial water…oh man. Fun hanging out with couch surging friends, eating amazing food, listening to jazz, and playfully mourning my failed 360 bike plans as we watched it violently hail from a cozy couch. I’ll hopefully be cycling to just where my head stops on that poster after this messy cold weekend. This. Is. An. Adventure.

Viking stout = definitely top 3 beers of all time. That glacial water…oh man. Fun hanging out with couch surging friends, eating amazing food, listening to jazz, and playfully mourning my failed 360 bike plans as we watched it violently hail from a cozy couch. I’ll hopefully be cycling to just where my head stops on that poster after this messy cold weekend. This. Is. An. Adventure.

Plans are changing

Road conditions got bad.

Looks like I’ll be staying in Reykjavik for 2 days, then doing two separate smaller tours, sticking to the lower lands in the South and avoiding the icy passes that got hit recently.

I’ll still see a number of glaciers, beaches, waterfalls, lagoons, volcanoes, etc. now I get to spend more time with my new friends in the capital, too.

Life is an adventure :)

Today’s the day…I hope

Trying to figure out getting my bike to the airport when all my rides bailed on me = incredibly stressful.

It looks like I’m bus hopping. Usually not so bad, but here’s how this has to pan out: I have to get my bike on the front bus rack and hope the front clamp goes over my front rack to keep the bike in place. I’ll have. To leave the back panniers on. I’m not too nervous about them falling off, though. They’re good quality. Then I have to lug the bike box and my front panniers on board. I’ll travel on the first bus for half an hour. Then I get off that bus, take everything off, and start the process over again with another bus. Take that bus for about forty minutes to the airport bus. There I can try and figure out if I will disassemble the bike and pack it at that stage so I can throw the whole thing in the under storage, or keep it in pieces and pack it up at the airport terminal.

I’m praying for a Good Samaritan who will kindly be my box lackey for the various transfers. I’m thinking is will happen, as my diminutive lady-ness causes a spring to action, even when I don’t really need it. I’m thinking this will cause a normal (for me) reaction of leaving two hours early in hopes that if there is a glitch, I can have a window of time to scramble everything together, or make an entirely new plan.

God, I get so stressed about flying, up until he point where I’ve made it to the gate. From there, it’s smooth sailing…or flying, as it were. Crashes, terrorists, smelly passengers even don’t cross my mind. I’m always just afraid of getting so close and then being barred from my dream trips. I haven’t flown in over a year and I’ve never flown with a bike, so I’m extra stressed. Add to that having wanted to go to Iceland since I was 14 and we’re entering into some major anxiety-inducing waters. Please keep your fingers crossed for me!

putting on bike fenders should not be this hard. #havingashittyday #notagearhead #queenofstrippingbolts

putting on bike fenders should not be this hard. #havingashittyday #notagearhead #queenofstrippingbolts

I’m still getting asked a ton, “Why Iceland?” It makes me laugh a little. Have you never done a google search of the place? Have you never heard of Bjork? One look at any photo from Iceland will testify to it’s magic and charm. It’s been voted Nicest Country for it’s welcoming and friendly inhabitants time and time again. Going on a bike tour around the island isn’t just on my bucket list, but I on almost everyone who dreams of traveling abroad on two wheels. You can see everything from The Arctic Lights to ponies to glacial lagoons to fields of lava and hot springs, ice caves and puffins and great night life and art and Viking history and good coffee and stunning waterfalls and volcanos. I can’t wait to have freezing salt water splashed on me from atop enormous cliff sides and see desolate black deserts and the first spring blooms of tulips. I don’t even care that there will still be snow when I get there, it’s a chance to see the country by bike in a way only a few even attempt. As nervous as I am about getting my bike in order and getting everything (myself included) on the plane, I’m doubly excited about getting to live one of my dreams.

I’ve been fantasizing about wandering around Iceland since first purchasing Bjork’s album Post as a freshman in high school (that’s almost 15 years ago btw) and no matter how the trip pans out, I feel so lucky to get to do it. How many people get to wake up after a red eye, step off a plane, get on their bikes, pedal all day through a storybook country, soak in a hot spring on top of a volcano, and go to sleep under the aurora borealis? I think I might wedge myself into a crevass and never come home.

Life is for living.

Do not wait; the time will never be “just right.” Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.

—Napoleon Hill (via h-o-r-n-g-r-y)

(Source: misswallflower, via h-o-r-n-g-r-y)

In case anyone was biting their nails in anticipation…

I bought that front rack. The only one left in Durango. Walked in, pointed to it on the wall, and pulled out my card before he even went to get it. I’m going to have multiple slightly empty panniers, but I’d rather be safe with extra space and weight than trying to figure out what to leave behind when I’m jamming everything I need back in. It’s twice as expensive as the one I was going to order from Durango Cyclery, but I just don’t have time now to wait for shipping and this one is better quality anyhow.

Ugh. First World problems or what?

On a different unresolved note, I can’t find my freaking Marmot parka. I’m hurting inside. I love that jacket so much. It’s my AT jacket. I bought a Marmot shell to throw over it just to protect it and keep it going another winter, but now it seems it has become lost in the mess of things. I’ve been housesitting for almost a whole month, moving into a new place, fixing a bike, planning an 800 mile tour in another country, and getting new clients lined up for the summer. My head is a little loose. Still, I so so so rarely lose anything, so I’m really bummed. I hope it turns up somewhere and SOON!

3/4 done. Lookin fly

3/4 done. Lookin fly

In 7 days and 7 hours, I’ll be on my way to #Iceland

In 7 days and 7 hours, I’ll be on my way to #Iceland

Nicole working on some badass bike leggings for me! Can’t wait to class up #Iceland in these bitches @2611art_trillpen

Nicole working on some badass bike leggings for me! Can’t wait to class up #Iceland in these bitches @2611art_trillpen