Do you ever have an idea that you shrug off as a fleeting thought? Or perhaps as something unrealistic and silly? I have a lot of moments where ideas swirl in and out. I call them nuggets of possibility. I actually try hard to write down many of my ideas, thoughts, dreams, and questions. It helps to see patterns and remember ideas that I will likely be unable to recall later.
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Sometimes it is just a trigger that leads me in a totally different and unexpected direction. An idea that seemed “fleeting” can morph into something much more with attention and determination. I think I would describe it as lighting a sparkler and watching the steams of sparks flying in different directions as I wave it around. Many times the sparks fade fast and other times the sparks keep on flowing and grow in intensity.
I asked ‘what if’
It was in the winter that I started to think about a trip. As active as I am in the winter, I still spend more indoor spent indoors than I do the rest of the year. I had recently seen photographs and read stories about travels in Iceland and learned of the 1,332-kilometer (828 miles) Ring Road. And oh how I love a good road trip. So I asked ‘what if’ I wanted to go to Iceland for two weeks to photograph and see the land.
I needed to pose my idea to Jared to see if he would be up for this extended road trip. Jared had previously been on many road trips with me throughout Maine along with a tent/live in your small SUV trip to Yosemite National Park. I like to stay close to nature and be there for early mornings and late evenings. I also enjoy the ease, freedom, and frugality of living in a mobile house on wheels.
I recall the conversation with Jared went something like this: “Jared, I have been thinking about it and I want us to go to Iceland. For two weeks. Let’s just hit the road and have an epic adventure. Are you in?” And Jared replied, “yup, i’m in!”
Winding roads of the Westfjords.
Ring Road as the sun set, North Iceland.
Two weeks in Iceland
We estimate that we traveled more than 1,200 miles as we circumnavigated Iceland’s Ring Road along with a number of detours down routes and f-roads. Our experiences growing up in Maine and driving in all four seasons of weather proved to be quite handy.
The population of Iceland is 329,000. Of which two-thirds of the nation live in the capital city of Reykjavík. To put it in perspective Maine has four times as many people living in roughly a third of the land mass. I joked throughout the trip that most of the days we saw more sheep and waterfalls than people. I loved every minute spent road tripping in a small white camper van.
We awoke to snow on our first full day in Iceland and put our Maine winter driving experience to work.
The two weeks went by so quickly as we planned the trip one day at a time to allow our curiosities to be the compass to guide us. Our curious nature sent us venturing down rough dirt roads and across mountain passes to catch glimpses of snow-capped volcanoes, hidden waterfalls, and imposing glaciers. As a photographer, I was overwhelmed by the beauty and felt grateful to have the time to experience and create images of the varied landscapes.
Stories and photographs of Iceland
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That’s me out photographing an un-named foss (waterfall) in Seyðisfjörður, East Iceland. (Photograph by Jared Palmer)