Riaan and Dan’s efforts to enter the waters of the south coast of Iceland have been dealt a double blow in the past two weeks. With their original kayak out of commission and not wanting to risk the sole kayak they have left, the pair now has to wait for the turbulent waves in the south east coast to abate before resuming their paddle.

The team embarked on a quest to become the first South Africans to circumnavigate Iceland by kayak 71 days ago. Their progress has to date been hampered by bad weather, the eruption of Grímsvötn volcano two weeks ago, followed by the damage sustained by their original kayak.

“The guys have been dealt quite a lot of setbacks which has impacted on their progress significantly. But this is an expedition and not a race, and we are glad that they have displayed a 100% commitment to their goal even with all the difficulties. We are happy that they are being responsible by putting their safety first and waiting out the enormous waves,” comments Mark von Bentheim, marketing manager of the Windhoek trademark in South Africa.

The unrelenting Riaan commented about their wait on the south east of Höfn: “We have been progressing at a snail’s pace with all the setbacks we have experienced thus far. We have been warned by the locals that this point of the island would pose a big risk to our kayak so we are heeding that advice.”

Dan, who got separated from the kayak in an incident that saw the pair fall out the kayak a month ago, is growing into an astute paddler by the day. He cautioned: “I have been battling with my balance in the water and paddling through the rough waves would be to my disadvantage. We are facing four-foot shore breaks and only have one kayak left to face the surf with. It’s a big risk and we would rather wait.  We don’t want to be destabilized again and risk damaging this kayak by hitting the rocks. The good thing though is that once the waves subside, we will be on the verge of finally entering the South Coast.”

Once the waves settle down, Dan and Riaan will embark on conquering the south coast of Iceland, edging closer to completing their journey.

In brief:


  • Days completed thus far: 71 days since leaving Husavik 27th March
  • Last terrain covered:  Höfn (South-Eastern part of Iceland)
  • Distance covered thus far: 571km
  • Total trip distance to be covered: 1425km
  • Current location: Stokkens (South-East of Höfn)
  • Next stop: Skinneyjarhöfoi  (West of Höfn)
Watch the latest video footage of the trip below:

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