Iceland’s “Forgotten Coast Route” Part One: Chris Burkard’s Preparations

Iceland’s South Coast is one of the island’s most visited zones, but its beaches are seldom seen. It sounds like an audacious claim, but with 49 rivers strewn across the island’s southern beaches, this famous stretch boasts hundreds of miles of rarely explored coastline, with access being its biggest challenge. The goal of Chris Burkard’s “Forgotten Coast” trip is to link them all in one route, using a combination of fatbikes, to travel across its black sands and pack-rafts, to cross the rivers that break up these stretches of sand.

The “Forgotten Coast Route” starts in the small eastern Iceland town of Djúpivogur and spans over 300 miles of mostly contagious beaches, spits, ocean islands, and sandbars. From Djúpivogur, Chris Burkard, Steve “Doom” Fassbender, and Cameron Lawson will attempt to link these stretches, leapfrogging across rivers and ocean, fighting the harsh Icelandic wind and weather, all the way to the southern town of Þorlákshöfn.

So how does one come up with this ambitious route? To answer this question you have to jump inside the mind of Chris Burkard. Having traveled to Iceland over forty times over the last fifteen years, you inevitably end up traveling the fabled South Coast countless times. A beautiful destination-riddled area that, in the last few years, has become the hub for tourism in the country.

Chris spent numerous trips searching along this stretch of coast to document its surf, but mostly where roads intersect the sand. This past January, a simple question popped into his mind while returning from a trip in the East: How could you travel through this section of coast and see every bit of it? From this simple question, the research began. Pouring over maps, talking to fishermen, flying and driving the coast. From this, the route was born.

All that was left was to assemble the right people and gear to do it. Stay tuned for what they found in subsequent route descriptions and trip reports!



66NORTH Karsnes Windbreaker
66NORTH Vatnajökull Jacket – Synthetic
66NORTH Packlite Shell
66NORTH Packlite Rain Pants
66NORTH Gritted Micro Fleece

Rapha Beanie
Patagonia Joggers
Thermal Bottoms

Pearl izumi Gloves
Patagonia Fly Fishing Gloves
Cycling Gloves
Black diamond Shell gloves
Black Diamond Glove Liner

0.5mm neoprene socks
Seal skin socks
Swift Whick socks

Ten Thousand Light weight shirt


7MESH Ultralight Shammy
POC Baselayer
PearlIzumi Shorts
BD Sunshirt

POC Omni Helmet
POC Devour Glacial Sunglasses (more coverage for sand storms)
POC Elicit


Frame: Fezzari Kings Peak
Wheels: HED Big Half Deal Wheels
Wheels: Terrene Cake Eater Tires – 27.5 x 4.8”
Shifting: SRAM XX1 (10-52 tooth SRAM Eagle XX1, 30T chain ring)
SRAM XX1 Eagle GripShifter w/ Ergon GP2 grips
Enve M6 Bars
Infinity E1X Bike Seat
One Up Component Peddles
BarYak Bar Extension system


AEROE Spider Rack
11L Quick Mount Pod ( quick release to make bike easier to pack on raft)
8L Heavy Duty Dry Bag

Revelate Ripio Frame Bag
Revelate Down Tube Bag
Tail Fin Top Tube Bag
Patagonia Fly Fishing Bag

HyperLite 40L Backpack “The Southwest”


Nite Ize Waterproof 3-1-1 Pouch
3x Carbon Nite core charger (40,000 mili amp hrs)
Black diamond headlight
Phoenix flashlight

Cables (phone, micro usb, usbc)
Icelandic wall charger (usb & usbc)
GoPro (3x batteries)
Sony RX100VI


CamelBak Tool roll
Lezyne pump & 2 CO2
27.5” FatBike Tube
Muc-Off Chain Lube
Wolf tooth Pack Pliers w/ quick links
LeatherMan Squirt
Alpacka Raft Patch Kit
Crank Brothers Tool
Dynaplug Repair Kit
Derailer Hanger


HydraPak 2L
HydraPak Speed 500ml
Fuel (Steve carried the stove)
Sony Speaker
Sea to Summit Cup
5 Dehydrated Meal & Breakfast
An assortment of gas station candy and snacks


HyperLite 40d Sleeping Bag
BD FirstLight Tent 2P
Small UberLite Thermarest Pad


Floss, sleeping pills, earplugs, toothbrush
Nite-Ize Wire hangers
Nomadix Bandana Towel

Titan Straps
Austere Manufacturing Straps


Alpacka Raft Caribou
AquaBound Paddle (4-piece)
Alpacka Raft Kokatat Dry Suit
Mustang Survival Life Vest
Peddle Cover (eliminated the need to take off the peddle from the bike when you place it on the raft)