By Emily Bei Cheng | Photos : Emily Bei Cheng & Andy Wong
There's something about the expansive landscapes of Iceland that light a spark in me. Since I was young I've always been drawn to desert, tundra, and alpine biomes, landscapes that stretch as far as the eye can see, where you can point to a spot miles in the distance and say, "Let's go there."
I've been back to Iceland 8 times now. This time the plan was to take a group of friends bikepacking, following a path that I mapped through the Iceland highlands and named the Iceland Fjallaback Track. Check out the route here: https://bikepacking.com/routes/iceland-fjallabak-track/
Fjallabak, pronounced "fee-at-lah-bahk", means “mountain back” in Icelandic. The route’s namesake is the Fjallabak Nature Reserve, established in 1979, and described as “mountainous, sculptured by volcanoes and geothermal activity, covered by lavas, sands, rivers and lakes.” Indeed, the Iceland Fjallabak Track is an ode to the distinctive mountain-flanked terrain of the highlands that inspires so many.
Get your feet wet in dozens of water crossings and be rewarded with the rugged beauty of Iceland: moss-draped peaks, vast volcanic plains, rhyolite mountains, and far-flung hot springs. The Iceland Fjallabak Track is an otherworldly tour of the Icelandic Highlands that strikes a balance for riders seeking wilderness paired with just the right amount of support from the mountain huts along the route...
The full story recounting the trip will be published in the upcoming edition of Bikepacking Journal, Issue 11.