Inspired by Iceland - Iceland's famous motorcycle guide Hjörtur L. Jónsson on ice - Crazy ideas must be completed! Driving a BMW 1250 GS HP on Ice at Hafravatn five kilometers from Reykjavík this weekend!
Story by Hjörtur L. Jónsson, Iceland’s famous motorcycle guide. He knows every winding and gravel road in Iceland. Here is his story from yesterday, driving on ice at the lake Hafravatn five kilometers from Reykjavík. Mr. Jónsson has been a guide at the Biking Viking motorcycle rental for over 15 years. On the ice yesterday: Three KTM450 and one KTM85cc, a Yamaha 450 and a BMW 1250 GS HP plus a Husqvarna TE450 and a GasGas 200.
Hjörtur L. Jónsson (60) has kept himself in shape during the winter by riding with his son Ólafur Arnar Hjartarson Nielsen (23) on an off-road motorcycle on ice whenever possible. This winter, his son Ólafur started thinking whether it would be possible to make studded tires from wood screws into old worn tires. Hjörtur immediately went in to find a suitable tire, next was to find out which screws should be used and how many.
Everything went well and the tires fit under.
After thinking and testing, the result was to use 6.3x25mm. screws. 378 in the front tire and 448 in the rear tire and each screw stands 10mm out. It took about six hours to screw all these screws in and then an old thick inner tube was put over the screw heads inside the tires. Next was the fitment, rims off, tires off and the sensors removed.
The tires are fitted to the rims with new thick inner tubes designed for enduro bikes. Next they put 30psi. of air in each tire. The tires were fitted and there were no screws touching the mudguards or brake hoses. Next was just waiting for good weather and solid ice on frozen lakes.
Hafravatn five km. from Reykjavík 05.12.2020
It was good weather, no wind, but the frost was -7c. They put the BMW 1250 GS HP into the van and put on the warmest clothes we had. Take the bike out on the ice and test it. This day will be a memorable one for the guys.
The grip on the tires was much better than we dared to hope, the bike can be tilted fearlessly to 45 degrees in corners without losing grip. The traction control ensured that you always had the best available grip. We took turns riding the bike and took pictures of each other.
My son Ólafur even tried to figure out how much the bike could be tilted before he lost his grip by driving in small circles. The grip was amazing until the crash bars on the cylinders were about 1 cm. From the ice and then the footpegs were dragging along the ice.
After about 100 km ride and with about 400 pictures we went home happy after one of the most fun motorcycle days we have ever had.
Will I try it again?
Asked if he intends to return to the ice on the BMW, the answer was:
Sometimes the snow gets so hard that you can ride on top of it on a big motorcycle, I did this last in March 2018 when I tried to ride up mountain called Skjaldbreiður on my own BMW 1200GS. Then I only had car studs in the tires and not good enough grip. Right now I have the tires that grip enough and will probably try again to get to the top of the volcano which is in 1000 meter over sea level if the snow gets hard enough sometime this winter.
Come and join me! Les her om en annen tur rundt Island med Hjörtur L. Jónsson.
If you are dreaming about, or planning, a motorbike ride around Iceland you can get in contact with Hjörtur L. Jónsson via: Hjörtur L. Jónsson, Ásgarði 53, 108 Reykjavík and mobile number +354-694 9097.
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