Author Topic: Aurora, Storms, and Snowpants: An Icelandic Saga by Something Fishy, whYME, and ChAiM'l  (Read 45222 times)

Online moish

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i found it to be a blessing in disguise that they did not allow cameras on the beach of oman as we watched a sea turtle lay her eggs. i would have been so preoccupied with trying to get the shot, i would not have appreciated the niflaos haboreh

i guess the northern lights is a longer event where you can have time for both

Offline Moishebatchy

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That's because AJK was "working."


😂😂😂

Offline Moishebatchy

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From my sneak preview, you won't be disappointed.
Well you may be, but only in that you didn't decide to go with them!

+1,000,000,000,000

I didn't even bother mentioning it to my wife, because I didn't dream in a million years that she would be okay with me going. But we were sitting at lunch the day that the guys arrived in Iceland, and I mentioned it to my wife, and she's like "oh, why didn't you go with them?" :o :o :o

Offline benjie1305

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+1,000,000,000,000

I didn't even bother mentioning it to my wife, because I didn't dream in a million years that she would be okay with me going. But we were sitting at lunch the day that the guys arrived in Iceland, and I mentioned it to my wife, and she's like "oh, why didn't you go with them?" :o :o :o

Would have never happened either way. Women just know how to milk the most out of any given situation. >:D
Work hard, Play harder!

Offline Moishebatchy

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Would have never happened either way. Women just know how to milk the most out of any given situation. >:D


Actually, she told me to take out my phone right then and there and check if there were still any flights leaving to KEF that day, but the only flights available were the next day, had 2 connections, and cost a fortune. But thank you for having so much faith in her. >:(

Offline benjie1305

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Actually, she told me to take out my phone right then and there and check if there were still any flights leaving to KEF that day, but the only flights available were the next day, had 2 connections, and cost a fortune. But thank you for having so much faith in her. >:(

Lol. She probably knew that and knew that the trip was already in action.  ::)

Then again, IME those Arzei women do tend to be very friendly and accommodating. She might be a keeper after all.  :D
Work hard, Play harder!

Offline Moishebatchy

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Lol. She probably knew that and knew that the trip was already in action.  ::)

Ah, screw you. Forget it. >:D

Then again, IME those Arzei women do tend to be very friendly and accommodating. She might be a keeper after all.  :D

We don't live in Arzei, sorry. But thanks for playing! We have some lovely consolation prizes for you on your way out...

Offline benjie1305

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We don't live in Arzei, sorry.

You led me astray with the Arzei Makolet!

Quote
But thanks for playing! We have some lovely consolation prizes for you on your way out...

 >:( Stop reminding me of the "take a spin" game I keep loosing at!  >:(
Work hard, Play harder!

Offline Moishebatchy

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You led me astray with the Arzei Makolet!

 >:( Stop reminding me of the "take a spin" game I keep loosing at!  >:(

Okay, enough. Time to get this thread back on topic, or we're gonna get our @$$es handed to us. :o

Offline noturbizniss

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Okay, enough. Time to get this thread back on topic, or we're gonna get our @$$es handed to us. :o
At the very least youll get a date with the world famous rusty hacksaw
READ THE DARN WIKI!!!!

Chuck Norris...
...can still do FT method
...READS THE WIKI!!!

Online Something Fishy

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[Something Fishy] During the winter, there is only one way to get to Iceland direct from New York - Icelandair. Since Icelandair has the dubious distinction of having a frequent flyer program that is worse than Delta's, cash it was :'(.

It came out around $200 cheaper to book two one-ways, and another $200 less if returning to BOS instead of JFK. In the end, whYME and myself were booked JFK-KEF-BOS-LGA, with the last leg costing 4500 Avios.

Sun., 2/22: FI614 JFK-KEF, 8:00p – 6:45a, +1

Wed., 2/25: FI631 KEF-BOS 5:00p - 5:40p
--- 2:20 connection ---
Wed., 2/25: US215 BOS-LGA, 8:00p – 9:25


[ChAiM'l] There are three airlines that fly to Iceland from London, however two of them don't have mileage programs and the third is Icelandair (see above). BA are starting to fly that route this October, so that'll open a viable mileage option for the future.

Easyjet is a cheap no-frills airline that serves many destinations primarily within Europe and they had a flight available for the outbound leg which I booked. Their return flight however, didn't work with our planned schedule, so I booked that on Icelandair.
 
Mon., 2/23: U22295 LTN-KEF, 7:45a – 10:50a

Wed., 2/25: FI454 KEF-LHR 4:30p - 7:30p


[Something Fishy] Iceland's main airport is in Keflavik, a town around a 45-minute drive from Reykjavik. Reykjavik's own airport is used for short-haul domestic and Greenland flights only. There are buses from the airport to the central bus terminal in Reykjavik every couple of minutes, and that is the route most people take.

The plan was for whYME and myself to land, daven, and take the bus into town. We would then get the car and stock up on groceries, and head back to the bus terminal to pick up ChAiM'l. The timing seemed perfect; alas this would turn out to be quite the snafu ;D.


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Online Something Fishy

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[Something Fishy] One thing we knew from the get-go is that we'll need to be as mobile as possible. We can't stay in a hotel in Reykjavik if we were to hunt auroras all night; we can't waste time packing, transferring hotels, and repacking when there are pictures to be shot. On top of that, in order to get to all the locations we wanted to photograph, we would be covering a tremendous amount of ground.

The obvious answer then was to rent some sort of camper. We wouldn't be tied down to anything; we'd be able to go where we want, when we want. And with three drivers, we could keep going as long as needed.

There are three types of campers available in Iceland. There's the pickup-mounted one (which PBaruch had during his trip), the typical RV-type, and a van-style.

Doing some research, we found that the pickups are generally outfitted for off-road, Highland driving. This being the dead of winter, the Icelandic Highlands were inaccessible anyways. Renting a truck like this would have cost a fortune, and we couldn't even use it for what it's made for. The next option - the RVs - were beautiful, modern, with all the comforts of home. They were also dirt cheap - suspiciously so. Digging deeper, we found that the reason for that is the wind. The RVs are so tall, that there is a very real danger of them being tipped over by the ferocious Icelandic winds. Umm... No, thanks. An on-board toilet is kinda worthless if it's sideways.

That left us with the third option, the van-style. In Iceland these are generally referred to as campervans, and as it turned out would be the perfect vehicle for us. Around the size of a Mercedes Sprinter, these sleep 3-5 people.

The big campervan player in Iceland is KuKu Campers. Their prices were great, the reviews were positive, and we were getting ready to book. But then in a bit of last-minute research, I suddenly came across this Trip Advisor post:

:o :o :o!

Five minutes of Googling confirmed that this is indeed true. Among others, we found articles in both Haaretz and on Icelandic websites reporting the exact same thing. In fact, last year they had designated the low, cheap season as "Jew Season":



Needless to say, they did not get our business.

Eventually we came across Campervan Iceland. Their diesel-powered Campervan Big slept four, and came with a stove, fridge, sink, and an independent heating system. Crucially, it came with unlimited mileage (kilometers actually ;)). They also paid for the airport bus (20EUR value), and offered free pickup from the bus terminal.

Coming in at a final price of $220.01/day - cheaper than Kuku - it was a simple choice to make. We had to take it for four days, as they could only be booked in 24-hour increments. Split between the three of us, the $880.04 total came out to $73.33 per person, per day. Incredible deal, IMO.


[Chaim'l] Self-portrait under an incredible auroral display:



[whYME] A couple of hours and many miles later, Chaim'l and Something Fishy enjoying the still-ongoing show:



[Something Fishy] Sometime the next afternoon:



(Taking a picture of the van with one hand and filming with a head-mounted GoPro. This picture was taken with a remote camera triggered with my other hand)
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Online Yehoshua

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Yay!!  The story continues! Great pics so far, thanks for sharing; can't wait for the rest.

Offline VacationLover

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Oh oh now you are starting to talk. Nice pictures so far

Offline benjie1305

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More. Me. Want.
Work hard, Play harder!