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“Glacier hike with Coast Guard rescue” 1 of 5 bubbles
Review of Extreme Iceland

Extreme Iceland
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Welcome to Extreme Iceland Tour Operator! Extreme Iceland is a fully licensed travel agency that offers scheduled tours and private tours, both day tours and multi-day tours. We organize extreme winter super jeep tours, activity tours, day trips, longer tours, car rental self-drive tours, accommodation, all sorts of celebrations or just basically anything you can think of. A strong focus is placed on providing the best available service. The tours are operated by Extreme Iceland directly or teamed up with other accredited travel agencies of high professional standard. We specialize in tour design and travel operation for both scheduled and private tailor-made trips, summer or winter.
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
24 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Glacier hike with Coast Guard rescue”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 15, 2012

My husband and I hiked the Eyjafallajökull volcano and it ended in a Coast Guard helicopter rescue, which could have easily been prevented. A number of things contributed to this issue:
It seems that the tour we went on is usually done in the summer and our guide (Petur), although he had 30 years of experience, was unfamiliar with the terrain in winter. We questioned the starting point for the hike, he seemed to just pick a spot at random to start. During the hike he talked about the condition of the trail in the summer and kept changing the route because it had different terrain than in the summer. Our guide thought we would summit in 5 hours, but it took us 7. Later, the rescue crew said it was an 8 hour hike.
The first 2 hours of the hike were very technical. Although we knew the hike would be long and some of it would be in the dark, the website mentioned that there are no technical parts of the hike.
Extreme Iceland did not provide crampons as communications indicated they would. This was much too technical a hike without the proper equipment, especially in the dark. After having a tough time slipping on the ice, the guide put his crampons on. When we asked if we should have them, he said yes, that there must have been a miscommunication with Bjorn. We continued on because he said they weren’t required. Later, the rescue team was very surprised that we even attempted it without them and said we should not have done that hike without them.
By the time we reached the beginning of the final descent, it was dark, snowing and the wind had picked up. The rescue crew said the wind gusts were 96kph and the temperature was -10 degrees. We knew we would be finishing in the dark, and that weather conditions are unpredictable, however our guide couldn’t find the same route down even with a GPS and even if he did, we could not have done it without crampons. After about an hour of trying to find a way down, we told our guide that we were getting nervous that there might be an accident, as we had been outside for over 10 hours, and although we are in good shape, we are not expert hikers and expected to be off the mountain at that point. We finally convinced him to try to get in contact with someone. At first, he couldn’t get through to the emergency rescue number, but he did get through to a co-worker, who I believe made a call to the rescue number for him. He said that the rescue would be dispatched, but that we should keep trying to get down. We kept trying for about an hour, but it was pretty clear by this point that we were not going to be able to find a suitable path down. The Coast Guard wasn’t sure if they would be able to conduct the rescue due to the weather, but we were very lucky.
The rescue team that night was very impressive and we cannot thank them enough. The conditions were extremely difficult and we appreciated them speaking with us afterwards, they treated us very well.
We consider ourselves very lucky - we were not hurt aside from some minor frostbite which is healing well. However, this whole thing could have easily been avoided with the proper equipment and a knowledgeable guide. The worst part of all this is that in the 2 months since this happened we have not heard from Extreme Iceland and never even received an apology.

Visited February 2012
34 Thank LJM26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Droitwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“did not follow though their promise”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 30, 2012

I went to Iceland with my Husband and two daughters ages 25 and 28, had a good time generally. Extreme Iceland was booked for a private tour glacier walking followed by northern light hunt. The day was brilliant, the guide was very good making sure that all in the group were safe and having fun. We were to have lobster soup (out of this world) and then go looking for the lights. Unfortunatly due to weather conditions there was no chance of spotting the lights so we went back to our apartment at 9.30pm. I contacted Bjorn to say we understood and would like the chance to go out again, there website advertises a free return trip if no lights are spotted while looking for them. I thought as we had not even looked for them then we would be able to join a group to look for the lights. all we kept getting asked for was more money and when I asked for the return visit to be free was told they would get back to us they never did and we are still waiting. the point is we should of been back at 12/1am not 9.30pm so feel that we should of had the chance to go out another day to look for northern lights. We did book and pay for a trip with BSI on the 9/3/12 and saw the lights but why didnt EXTREME ICELAND get back i touch ?

Visited March 2012
3 Thank peatdog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Extremely responsive and helpful, great tours”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 30, 2012

Bjorn from Extreme Iceland was extremely helpful when I was planning my trip to Iceland. He responded to all of my emails almost immediately and he gave very detailed answers to my questions. Not only did he help me book my tours, but he also made suggestions for which tours I would book and helped me pick my hotel and helped me pick a restaurant for dinner on New Years Eve. The tours we booked through Extreme Iceland were great. We especially enjoyed the lava caving, which happened to be a private tour with a wonderful guide. If and when I return to Iceland, I will absolutely use Extreme Iceland to help plan my trip.

Visited December 2011
1 Thank scubadive425
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Wonderful tour tailored to our interests and abilities.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 1, 2012

I contacted Extreme Iceland about helping us arrange a two-week, self-drive tour. Bjorn (the owner) responded quickly and helped us turn a short list of destinations into a complete driving and hiking tour. Bjorn's outdoor experience helped greatly in narrowing down our list of destinations, suggesting several that we would not have discovered on our own, determining how long to stay in each place, and maximizing our time spent hiking. The actual trip couldn't have been better, and we loved all of the accommodations that he chose for us. The rental 4x4 also proved perfect for the level of off-road driving in our tour.

Bjorn and his wife also went out of their way to help us on a Sunday when our luggage didn't arrive so that we could get underway. It's hard to put a price on that.

Visited September 2011
1 Thank Andreas Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Extreme Iceland/Viking Car Rental ensured we had a great time!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 27, 2011

I had been Googling around for resources to plan our trip to Iceland, and come up with several 'must see' attractions including the Golden Circle and Jokulsarlon. I came across Extreme Iceland and they invite inquiries for tailored driving tours so I sent over a request. Bjorn responded in less than 1 hour, and was very responsive as I fine tuned details considering our budget and what we wanted to see. I was provided with a detailed and very helpful itinerary, the hotels selected for me were WONDERFUL, and when I called to inquire whether I could have the car for 1 extra day and drop it off at the airport rather than downtown, they were very amenable to my request. We had a perfect vacation thanks to Extreme Iceland! ~Susan & Jeff

Visited September 2011
4 Thank susanelofstedt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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