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Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

Rockville, Maryland
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Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

Hi all. We are going to be driving the Ring Road counter clockwise beginning mid-October. I just happened to come across a post in which someone wrote that the Ring Road is very scary between Egilsstadir and Hofn and recommended taking the 92/96. I believe that was if one was going clockwise. I was unclear if it was an issue going in my direction. My understanding is there are tight turns in the mountains with no guardrail and possibly no shoulder and much of it is gravel.

Are there any other sections I should be aware of when traveling counter-clockwise beginning at Reykjavik? I'm a good driver but am afraid of heights and am not keen on driving on roads with steep drop offs with no room for error. We have booked a 4WD Landcruiser (4 of us). For those you in the US, as an example, I hated driving to Lake Tahoe. The opposite direction was tolerable.

Thanks.

17 replies to this topic
Gardabaer, Iceland
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1. Re: Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

I checked various locations near Lake Tahoe and about 98% of the icelandic road system is narrower than the road sections I found there. Road width in Iceland is more or less as the Pyramid Lake Road or Sutcliffe Highway I found nearby, no road shoulder and one lane each way.

That said, what is scary to one may be normal to others. Going the Öxi pass (rd 939) counter clockwise means that the hairpin turns up the steepest hills of the valley are on your way up and not down. Many people mistake Öxi pass (rd 939) for the main road (rd 1) though, so some stories about the no. 1 main road are actually about road 939. If the roads are scaring yo already before reaching this part of the island, it's an easy choice as a "not to drive yourself".

Helpful videos:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ho3ljjSd7G8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGfePqVJE-U

Milan, Italy
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2. Re: Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

Hi! I drove that portion of Ring Road during this summer, clockwise direction (so from Egilsstadir to Hofn). The road has a pretty high gradient (you come from the top of a mountain to the valley underneath), gravel based but for my experience it doesn't seem so fearful. Maybe someone who drove that road during the winter months could be more helpful.

Anyway, I really appreciate the beautiful landscapes of the Eastern Fjords from that piece of Ring Road :)

Melbourne, Australia
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3. Re: Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

I did the coastal route recently and although we had bad weather, there were patches of nice scenery poking through that made it really enjoyable. The scariest - and most amusing - part was driving through fog with 20m visibility and sheep sitting in the middle of the road, who were happy to stay there as we drove around them!

gowildimages.com/Landscapes/…A

Cinisello Balsamo...
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4. Re: Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

It was me who wrote about that scary road section. It was a foggy day, with low visibility, and being on a steep gravel road with few guardrails it was not a good sensation. Other people confirmed us that they didn't like that section too. That said, it's a little portion in an otherwise easy and relaxing road. It could alse be a personal fear, so judge for yourself... :)

https://www.google.it/maps/@64.9018846,-14.5844895,3a,75y,6.68h,69.75t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sKQqEcVcdoe7A-5xe5wbIPw!2e0

Rockville, Maryland
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5. Re: Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

Thanks. I've already viewed these.

Rockville, Maryland
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6. Re: Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

Oh good and thanks. Are we talking miles and miles or like 10 minutes worth of scary roads? And had you known about Route 92/96, would you have driven that route in place of that section of the Ring Road?

Final question, are there any other portions of the Ring Road that are a little dicey like this section? I am not concerned about gravel.

Cinisello Balsamo...
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7. Re: Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

No, that is the only one. I don't remember exactly, but it shouldn't be more than half an hour!

Ireland
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8. Re: Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

Hi there - planning a 14/17 day cycle trip later this year - any information on the gradient of the ring road in the region of the Eastern Fjords - have not got a good map with contours as of yet.... so, are there many steep climbs (going in a clockwise direction)...and if so, what is the highest pass? and does access begin at sea-level??

Thanks

Gardabaer, Iceland
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9. Re: Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

You'll find steep climbs just about every day. They tend to be rather short so nothing horrendous for an average biker. Highest pass can range from anywhere from 300m asl to 900m asl depanding on the road.

Some can be seen here in this poster showing the longest bridges, most road tunnels and the top height above sea level on various road sections. vegagerdin.is/media/vegakerfid//pix740/Veggo…

Edited: 19 May 2015, 18:17
Malta
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10. Re: Any Scary or Dangerous portions of the Ring Road?

So can one avoid the Oxi pass staying on Route 1 when doind th ring road counterclockwise?

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