Day 6 – Ring Road Iceland- Our Performance Recap

Day 6 on the Ring Road, Iceland….If you may remember from my first couple posts on Iceland, we were given a 10 list challenge to complete on our road trip along the Ring Road that was handed to us by our Canadian friends in Reykjavik. These ‘challenges’ were miraculously thought up at the bar over some drinks, so as you can imagine, it was quite a creative list. Below was the list we were given…

Our Ring Road Trip Challenges

Our Ring Road Trip Challenges


Our Ring Road Trip Challenges

I don’t think they had done half these on their road trip! And don’t worry if you can’t read it… I’ve listed each below…

So here’s how we did…

1. Hug a sheep – To me, this basically means to bush tackle a sheep but then again, I’m not the one who wrote the list. In the end, we both made a few attempts at this and came fairly close but those damn sheep are fast! I caught my second attempt on video… The best is the look on the sheep’s face and the bit of hesitation that follows when he realizes I’m on the way! By the way, this is an un-edited video so still a bit rough around the edges….

2. Swim in the North Atlantic (Iceberg lake is acceptable) – This we nailed on our last day. It would have been better to do this on a different day when the weather might have been better as it was raining and the wind in the area we were in was gusting around 3000 mph. Yeah, 3,000. Needless to say, the dip in the ocean didn’t last long…

Swimming in the North Atlantic - Iceland

Alex was first out of the gate… I was hanging back checking for sharks and still freezing my tail off…


Swimming in the North Atlantic - Iceland

Running in…


Swimming in the North Atlantic - Iceland

Although the water was cold, it was actually warmer to be in the water than it was outside that day with the wind and the rain

3. Tolerate 44 degrees Celcius  (111.2 F) for more than 2 minutes – Meaning a geothermal pool of course. This we came close to as there were some very hot spots in certain areas of the geothermal pool we were in at Lake Mývatn. I don’t really know the exact temperature but I’d say it was close to 44 in some spots.

Mývatn's geothermal pools in Iceland

There were some areas you could only spend a short amount of time in before you started to feel your skin actually start to melt

4. Sleep in the car – Done

Sleeping on the ring road trip

OK so I actually took this photo of myself but it’s believable isn’t it?

Sleeping on the ring road trip

Alex even conquered this while driving! It would be more believable if he wasn’t at ten and two….

5. Pick up Hitchhikers – So we had our first opportunity to pick up a couple hitchhikers right outside of the first town we stayed in…

We were headed out onto the Ring Road that morning when we saw two guys standing at the edge of town with all their bags. There was no doubt they were headed to the same town we were going to and we slowed down enough for them to think we were going to stop and for them to get a good look at us but then we just drove off. Needless to say, it was a bit awkward later when we ran into them in our hostel that night. So note to self: When there’s only one road and one town to stay in, expect to run into the same people over and over…
We did however get our one hitchhiker while at Lake Mývatn. I did not get a picture showing the proof but he was from Switzerland and was traveling through Iceland for a couple weeks and had only hitched with us for a few miles.

6. Hike more than 17km starting at noon – So the real challenge here is to make it back before sundown. This one we did not even come close to doing because we had so much driving to do during the day.

7. Bite a Glacier – Easy. Done.

Best glacial ice I've ever had

Tastes like….ice


Alex went the extra mile on this one...

Alex went the extra mile on this one…

8. Take a cold shower directly after a hot spring – Alex achieved this one at Lake Mývatn after the geothermal pool. However, I decided not to take this one on…

9. Find a rock younger than you – This was wasn’t too difficult as we were in several areas with lava rock that had been recently formed.

Lava rock

I’m still waiting on the lab results back to confirm this one’s age. To me it looks to be around 16 or 17 years

10. Drop something in the ocean off a boat and get it back – We nailed this one as well while on our boat ride at Glacier Lagoon

Jökulsárlón Glacial Lagoon

A dropped glove floating along in the Glacial Lagoon…


Jökulsárlón Glacial Lagoon

And its safe rescue back to the boat

All in all, I’d say we passed. We nailed a solid 7 from the list, and came close on two others. That’s a passing grade in my book. I’ll have to check with the Canadians to see what they think.

And on our last day driving back to Reykjavik, we stopped off the road to hike around a waterfall and while we were there, we ran into three girls that were just starting their road trip. However, they were traveling the Ring Road in the opposite direction from what we did as they were starting from Reykjavik and heading to Northern Iceland first. We talked about our road trip and also told them that since they were just starting their road trip, they must also complete this 10 challenge list so we passed it on and told them to let us know how they do and to pass it along again to keep it going….

Passing on the 10 challenges list for a ring road trip!

And here are some great stats from our Ring Road Trip:

Total Number of Kilometers driven on the Ring Road: 1339 Kilometers

Total Number of Kilometers driven on the entire road trip: 1496 Kilometers

Number of different gravel and dirt roads we drove on: 24

Number of Kilometers we drove on gravel: 300+ Kilometers

Top Speed: 126 KPH

Average Cost of Gas: $2.36 per Liter

Number of times we almost hit sheep on the road: 3

Number of hitchhikers picked up: 1

Number of Waterfalls seen: 772 (no seriously, I think this number is about accurate)

Number of Rainbows seen: 22

Notable foods eaten: 4 hot dogs, 5 bags of Icelandic Doritos, 6 Cheeseburgers, and 1 small sliver of Icelandic traditional dung-smoked Salmon

Most popular Icelandic name for a guy: Thor

Number of Restaurants we saw named Thor’s Restaurant: 1

Number of Outfits worn: 1

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6 Comments... Join the conversation below

  • Rosanne Losee December 3, 2011, 4:06 am

    The Sheep! The Sheep!

    What a hoot. Rory, you looked so funny running after the sheep. For a moment I thought they were going to turn and stampede at YOU! Can sheep stampede?

    And you can tell your grandkids that you ate glacier. 😉

    • Rory December 3, 2011, 10:29 am

      Haha, no I don’t think sheep are the stampeding type…. And they really are a a bit faster than you’d think

  • Trine Vik December 3, 2011, 5:41 am

    Hello Rory!

    I really enjoyed reading that, what a great idea to pass on this list of challenges! I think you did very well! I’m in Sri Lanka at the moment, just arrived yesterday and are looking forward to see what this country has to offer!

    Love from Trina

    • Rory December 3, 2011, 10:28 am

      Hey! Great to hear from you on here…. How is Sri Lanka? I’ve heard its very different from India… You’ll have to let me know how it is! Was thinking of going there

      Keep in touch!

  • steve May 2, 2015, 5:52 pm

    I’ve enjoyed reading your blog. I’m heading to Iceland on May 29th. I only have a week and will be in Reykjvek for 2 of the days. Is it really possible to drive from Lake Myvtan to Reykjavik in one day? I know it would be great to lolligag around the island for 2 weeks, but if I have to make up some time, this is where I could do it.
    Is it possible for me to hook up with people in Reykjvek over the first two days and put together a group to rent a car and drive the Ring Road.

    • Rory May 3, 2015, 3:49 am

      Hi Steve, I am actually traveling in Iceland right now and have discovered a lot of new places. It sounds like you have just 3 full days to travel. There’s no doubt that Lake Myvatn would be worth the drive but yes, you would essentially lose a lot of time in the car coming and going to Myvatn since it’s nearly the furthest from Reykjavik along the Ring Road. If I had to recommend an alternate trip doable in 3 days, I would recommend any of the following: Reykjanes Peninsula (southern section along coast), Snaefellsnes Peninsula, Vik, Golden Circle and/or Hofn and the Joksularon Lagoon. You probably couldn’t see ‘all’ that in 3 days but probably most of that if you route your trip right. All those areas are very diverse with a lot to see. If you are set on Myvatn, then be sure to check out my favorite falls: Detifoss and Hafragilsfoss which are close to Myvatn. You will have a long drive out and back from Reykjavik to Myvatn though so be prepared… As for a car rental, I’d recommend Sad Cars as they seem to be the cheapest. As for meeting up with others, try the lonely planet ‘Thorn Tree Forum’ as you could post your travels to find others that may want to join you. Too bad you’re not here now… we could’ve split our car!

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