A highland road on a windy SUMMER day. Now picture this full of ice and snow and help far away. That is Iceland in wintertime. PIC Tom Olliver

A highland road on a windy SUMMER day. Now picture this full of ice and snow and help far away. That is Iceland in wintertime. PIC Tom Olliver

We freely admit to understanding nothing. Turns out tourists renting cars in Iceland and paying extra for „sand and ash“ insurance still have to pay for damages made by… sand and ash.

These last few days have been plain horrible for locals and tourists alike. Usually we do not get winds traveling at almost 300 kilometers per hour in September but that has been the case lately. That is hurricane five wind-speed for those not up to their necks in scientific jargon.

Imagine for second what such massive winds will do with the tons of ash and sand lying around doing nothing in particular on vast areas around our active volcanoes. Now, imagine the same constant scenario for two straight days. Yup, you got that right. Bad place to be.

We have seen pictures of cars swept off roads like matchsticks. We have seen pictures of tourists in a car waving for help on a steep mountain road  more icy than the Rockefeller Ice Skating Rink. We have seen pictures of what used to be a blue car but after wind-stripping  it looks more like a future aluminum car from Audi.[blockquote type=”blockquote_line” align=”right”]We have seen pictures of what used to be a blue car[/blockquote]

By now, you must be having second, third and fourth thoughts about your forthcoming trip to Iceland. That was not our intention although, as always, we do recommend summertime for a glorious trip. It is only profit-seeking tour companies and airlines that want you to come here all year but those companies are not thinking about you and what you would like. Profits on the other hand…

In any case. hurricane season in Iceland is over for now but do not be afraid to ask about before renting a vehicle here over wintertime. Does it have winter tires? Does it have ash- and wind insurance and what SPECIFICALLY does that cover.

Lastly, do not be stupid. Driving in the highland in winter is pure stupidity unless you have a deathwish.