Mountain Bike Iceland


August 12-17, 2018

>> Register Here <<

Spots are limited on this departure to 20 people.

This is one of the most incredible cycling experiences on the planet. On Climate Ride Iceland we’ll travel to this magnificent island nation to explore the Southern Highlands where active volcanoes, sparkling glaciers, hot springs, and rustic mountain huts combine to create an unparalleled connection to nature. 

This charitable event is our premier mountain bike-only Climate Ride, and all of the cycling takes place on gravel roads (NEW for 2018 – we'll have daily options for single-track if you would like to try it out!). Local Icelandic guides and our Climate Ride team will take care of all the details, allowing us to ride, connect, and see how the changing climate is affecting the Land of Fire and Ice. On this charitable biking event, we travel where few tourists go. We stay in rustic mountain huts. If you crave more privacy, we suggest you bring a high-quality tent so you can stay in the campground. This trip is well-suited to experienced road cyclists who can get comfortable on a mountain bike. Weather can vary and you must be prepared for cold, rain, and river crossings. Follow our packing list and you'll be just fine! You should train to ride 50km (31 miles) per day on gravel roads. There are shorter options each day if you choose to ride in the support van. If you are vegan or vegetarian, please connect with us to ensure you have wonderful food options. Bring a big smile and your sense of adventure for this jaw-dropping charitable bike adventure! 

Climate Ride charitable events bring together bright minds, breathtaking routes for all cycling abilities, and the unforgettable combination of passion and purpose. On this trip, we’ll get a first-hand look at the environmental issues affecting Iceland including glacial melting, flooding, overfishing, and land rise, while learning about Iceland’s nearly 100% reliance on geothermal and hydropower energy sources.

This is a special Climate Ride Funders Trip and the proceeds directly support Climate Ride's work. Your fundraising on Climate Ride Iceland will benefit the programs and efforts of Climate Ride including our community scholarships for young climate leaders. You are helping us grow the organization to become an advocacy powerhouse that engages people in the world of active environmental philanthropy and sustainable solutions. All donations are tax-deductible.

See photos of Climate Ride Iceland here.

Trip Dates:   August 12-17, 2018  
Start Location:   Reykjavik, Iceland  
End Location:   Reykjavik, Iceland  
Fundraising Commitment:  

$4,000 minimum

Trip Length:   6 days  
Activity:   Mountain biking on gravel roads and paths  
Total Mileage:   12-31 miles per day, with daily mileage options  
Average Daily Mileage:   21  
Accommodations:   Rustic Mountain Huts (hot showers all nights except one)  
Maximum Group Size:   20  
Other Trip Notes:   Mountain bike or study hybrid recommended. Mountain bike rental available locally (additional cost).   

Important Dates

Fundraising Deadlines      
 $500 deadline:             June 22, 2018  
 $2000 deadline:              July 13, 2018  
 $4000 deadline   August 3, 2018  
Transfer Deadline          

No transfers are available for this ride. Because of the preparation that is undertaken to create this trip, if you cancel for any reason, your fundraising cannot be transferred to another event but will go directly to support Climate Ride's work.



Day 1 – Bike the Dómadalur Region – 22 miles

We depart early this morning from Reykjavik hotels for a 3-hour, scenic drive to Iceland’s spectacular volcanic mountains. At the foot of Hekla, the country’s most active and famous volcano, we’ll jump on our bikes for the first bike ride of the week – a stunning route across strange lava fields and stunning black desert sands before entering the amazing Dómadalur region, flanked by smooth grassy mountains on one side and colourful rhyolite peaks on the other. Our first night is spent in a remote cabin in the heart of these spectacular highlands.

Day 2 – Bike to Landmannalaugar – 16 miles

We head out early from our mountain hut at Landmannahellir to Frostastadavatn Lake (Icelandic for ‘Lake of the Frosty Place’). Our cycling route takes us to the famed natural hot springs at Landmannalaugar. Here we have an opportunity for a hike and a regenerating, well-deserved soak in the steaming natural pools. In the afternoon, enjoy an optional 9 km single-track bicycle route to Ljótapollur. Our accommodations for the night are at a mountain hut near Landmannalaugar.

Day 3 – Bike Eldgjá – 25 miles

On our third day of bike riding, we head eastward, biking on the Fjallabak Nature Preserve’s north route. The Fjallabak region, one of the largest geothermal areas in Iceland, takes its name from the numerous wild and rugged mountains with deeply incised valleys that are found here. The Nature Preserve, where more than 150 types of flowering plants, ferns, and allies have been identified, was established in 1979 to protect the area’s natural features so that future generations will have the opportunity to enjoy them as we do today. Tonight, our day ends at a comfortable mountain hut, where we’ll spend two nights.

Day 4 - Bike Sveinstindur – 19 miles

Today starts with a shuttle from Hólaskjól to Langisjór. Once at Langisjór we’ll gear up and cycle along the Skaftá River – a picturesque glacier-fed river. We continue along the rushing waters through the Eldgjá volcanic canyon, an enormous 5-mile fissure in the Earth and testament that this island straddles two continental plates. After an amazing day on the trail, we eventually return to our mountain hut for a hearty meal before turning in for the night.

Day 5 – Bike Emstrur – 28 miles

Day 5 begins on a black sandy highland road through pasture land used for sheep grazing. The gravel bike route today affords a magnificent view of the Mýrdalsjökull Glacier – with its ice cap topping the Katla volcano, made famous during the 2010 eruption of nearby Eyjafjallajökull. After a tasty lunch, we continue toward the south coast and cross the famous Laugavegur trekking route – noted for its wide variety of otherworldly landscapes. At our final mountain hut for the week, we’ll enjoy a farewell dinner and celebrate our last evening together.

Day 6 – Bike Fljótshlíð – 16 miles

Today’s bike ride starts off at Emstrur, passing the impressive Markafljót Canyon. From there we pedal our mountain bikes along the mountains with several challenging sections to the great canyons of the Markarfljót River. After lunch, we make our way on a remote and beautiful mountain road that leads to an idyllic valley under the Tindfjallajökull Glacier, where we’ll finish the week’s riding. After packing up our gear, we’ll drive back to hotels in Reykjavik for an afternoon arrival in the busy city.

Overnight Accommodations

Climate Ride Iceland is a 5-night, 6-day mountain biking trip that showcases the best of Iceland’s southern highlands. Each evening, we’ll be staying at remote, authentic mountain huts that are well-equipped for high country adventuring. Rooms at the lodges vary from smaller six-person rooms to rooms that will accommodate the whole group. You should bring your sleeping bag. You are also welcome to bring a tent to set up outside the huts (weather permitting).

The mountain huts are generally well-kept, clean and heated; some even have electricity and hot water, but they are still mountain huts offering no luxury and little privacy. But in this wild natural environment, the huts will seem like 4-star hotels! Please know that these huts are rustic but charming. More information will be available in the Travel Planner after you register.

Breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks are handled by our expert local guides. Dietary restrictions will be accommodated, but we recommend bringing special snacks and electrolyte supplements if you want them to power your ride. 

Travel Information

This charitable mountain biking trip begins in the vibrant city of Reykjavik on Sunday, August 12, 2018. Pick-ups will take place at designated hotels in the city between 8 am and 9 am. If you’re traveling from the US, you’ll definitely want to arrive at least one day before and stay in the city the night of August 11. We’ll enjoy a pre-ride gathering that evening at a fun local bar before meeting up for the shuttle the morning of the bike ride start.

The cycling event will end with a final shuttle back to Reykjavik on the afternoon of Friday, August 17, 2018. Options include extending your stay in the city, traveling on to Europe, or flying home directly after the ride. Please make airline reservations no earlier than 7 pm.

Travelers to Iceland must be in possession of a passport, valid at least for 90 days beyond their intended stay. Visas are not required for US citizens; however citizens of other countries may be required to obtain a visa prior to entry.

More detailed travel information is available in the Travel Planner which you’ll receive after registering.



Still have questions? Check out our Iceland Ride FAQ and Policies pages or email us!