Thursday, June 13, 2013

Summer adventures

Hiking map of Hornstrandir
I’m gearing up for another summer adventure in Iceland. Last summer I didn’t spend a single night in my tent, although I had a wonderful time in Iceland and did lots of day hiking and mountain biking. But when it was time to go back to work in the fall I realized that I terribly missed those nights spent outdoors. So this summer is packed with lots of outdoor fun and adventure and I’ll be sure to tell you all about it. But since the weather determines the schedule, I’m not going to divulge my plans too soon.

In any case, I have a nice weeklong hike on Hornstrandir planned for late July but I’m being extra careful in my planning. First off, I will be hiking alone, as usual. Secondly, I haven’t carried a large backpack since suffering a slipped disc in 2011 (hiking on Hornstrandir, by the way) and I’m not sure how my back will hold up. Though the numbness in my leg is long gone, the actual spot on my back is still tender. 

My feet a few weeks after surgery
Thirdly, I had foot surgery in April and the healing process is slower than I anticipated. I still have a great deal of pain with everyday walking, but the thick sole on my hiking shoes buffers the worst of it. I’ve been running short distances and have done 20k day hikes and feel pretty good, but there is some uncertainly as to how I will perform in mountainous terrain  with 15+ kg on my back, alone on an uninhabited region of Iceland that is only accessible by boat.

Hornstrandir, in the far north-west of Iceland
So after lengthy planning considering all of the above factors, I have chosen a “cautious” route. After all, to me it’s more about spending time alone in the outdoors, taking pictures, observing nature and clearing the cobwebs in my head, and not about logging kilometers. If my body doesn’t allow me to drag my snail shell everywhere with me, I’ll just camp and explore on day trips. Stay tuned!