Yannick Calonge : Flying over Iceland

Probably everything started here.I mean my passion for photography.
It was in 1997, we were 4 friends and we did a bicycle trip around iceland.At that time , i was using a simple camera (a Canon AE-1 programm) equiped with a simple 50mm/1,8 FD lens ! I did probably my best still photography ever, but i was still frustated not having a wide angle…

I had to wait 15 years to come back there again with 2 other friends : Agnès & Sébastien.Instead of cycling , we drove 2000 km around Iceland. Nothing really change since 1997, except a bit more touristic.

The 3 first week we had a fantastic weather, lot’s of sun and hot.Maybe too much, i was missing the dramatic dark icelandic clouds!lol

After the road trip , i wanted to do again the popular trekking between Skogar to Landmannalaugar .On the first day, i get caught after the first pass (after Fimmvorduskali near by Eyafjallajokul the volcano who erupted in 2010) by a sudden storm. I couldn’t moved at all from where i was. I tried to came back to the pass and to the hut , but it was impossible. The wind was so strong that i was ejected on the ground!!! I had no choice to set up my tent as fast as i could before i got hypothermia. I tried to set up first on the snow , it was totally unsuccessfull , the wind was really too strong.

The only shelter i first found was in the lava field , really closed to the volcano. I stayed a couple of hours , but even there the wind started to make pieces of my poor shelter. I made a wall with rocks , but the wind was still laughing at me! When the rain stopped , i went outside looking for snow in order to have some fresh water. I finally found a deep hole in the snow which was the perfect shelter for me and my damaged tent. i stayed there 2 nights and 2 days inside waiting the wind, fog and rain stopped so i could run away from this « holly » place!
It was July 21st , and i didn’t know that a new record of low pressure reach Iceland and gave birth probably to this strong wind ):

After all , i realised that i was at the worst place at the wrong moment. It’s maybe a question of bad luck or not .Anyway I feel lucky to be alive and it was quite a rich experience we usually not facing often in our life…

Music by the talented REID Willis « Escapist » from the album « Born of Kaleidoscope »

Reid WIllis website:!home/mainPage

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