Horace and The Rough Stuff Fellowship
Horace and The Rough Stuff Fellowship is a film from 2014 that features an interview with Dick Phillips about the 1933 and 1958 bicycle trips across Iceland alongside some amazing footage of a more modern mountain bike tour through the country. Watch it here alongside a stunning photo gallery…
In 1933, Horace Edward Stafford Dall completed the first crossing of Iceland’s interior by bike. He did so on a fully enclosed chaincase-equipped Raleigh 3-speed Roadster using only a compass and a paper map for navigation. This was the first time the remote Sprengisandur wilderness was crossed by any wheeled vehicle—preceding the first motorized vehicle by a month.
The next time Iceland’s interior was crossed by bicycle wasn’t until 1958 when four members of the Rough Stuff Fellowship tackled the same route—as you may have seen in the premier of The Further Away, The Better, which interviews 86-year-old Ron Bartle about the trip.
Fast forward 56 years and filmmaker Sebastian Doerk (@infinitetrails) set out to create a film intermixing an interview with Rough Stuff Fellowship’s Dick Phillips (one of the original members of the ’58 trip) and a more modern take on mountain bike touring in Iceland. The film provides a backstory to the RSF trip alongside some spectacular footage of rider Harald Philipp making his way across Iceland while pulling a trailer, camping, and riding some of the country’s more technical and bewildering singletrack.
In all honesty, I thought we had featured this video on the site when it was released in 2014. However, after digging back into the archives, including old Film Fest Friday posts from 2013-2014, it seems we must have missed it. So, I got in touch with Seb and he sent along a selection photos from the film’s release. Find them all below!
“Horace Dall was one of those who just overcame [obstacles] by not noticing that they were there.” —Dick Phillips
Interested in digging a little deeper into Iceland bikepacking content? Be sure to check out our articles, routes, films, and stories that are tagged #iceland here. Also, if you missed it, check out last week’s post, The Further Away, The Better. And if you want to learn more about Horace Dall’s 1933 trip, find the original PDF article here.
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