We are pleased to share a new film from our friends, Giorgio Frattale and Francesco D’Alessio, of MONTANUS.
ICELAND DIVIDE is the new film of MONTANUS, that recounts the bike crossing from north to south of Iceland, one of the most extreme territories of Europe, following the Mid-Atlantic Ridge that crosses the island. The lava ash, the boundless glaciers and the otherworldly scenarios accompany the expedition of two friends who ride the immeasurable desolation of the Highlands while capturing the fascinating beauty.
SALSA: What were the main things that drew you to Iceland?
MONTANUS: The extreme loneliness of the Highlands and the possibility to ride the only visible stretch of the longest mountain range on Earth, the Mid-Atlantic Ridge.
SALSA: How would you describe the landscape that you rode across?
MONTANUS: Something of a terrifying beauty. Iceland looks like a huge meteorite come from the outer space and crashed in the northern Atlantic Ocean.
SALSA: Was there anything that took you by surprise on this adventure?
MONTANUS: Definitely the brutal storms generated by winds from Greenland, which whip this land located close to the Arctic Circle. Looking at our Mukluk, fully loaded, held tightly by the handlebar, rise completely from the ground and wave as flags. Unreal!
SALSA: How important was the fat bike to being able to ride the route that you chose?
MONTANUS: The choice of the fatbike was crucial for this route. This allowed us to pedal during the crossing of the most remote areas and the roughest terrain, just like the solidified lava fields, the lava ash deserts and lots of fords with moving stones at the bottom. Not by chance, in Iceland the 4WD vehicles, including those of rescue, have a similar approach to fat bikes: they use huge tires that they inflate and deflate through a pneumatic system depending on the need.
SALSA: To anyone considering taking a bike expedition in Iceland, what are the main things you would tell them to help them prepare?
MONTANUS: A good bike with everything you need to deal with any mechanical problems. An appropriate physical preparation, the ability to adapt to extreme and changing weather situations and of course a large dose of curiosity and desire to explore... always!
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I love being outside. I prefer to ride on dirt. Or snow. If I was born a hundred years earlier I might have been a polar explorer. There's a great natural world out there to see, smell, taste, listen to, and experience. Life slows down out there and the distractions we've created will disappear if you let them. Give me a backpack and let me go.