Men carrying haplogroup I are found almost exclusively in Europe, where they make up about 20% of the total population. In fact, men bearing haplogroup I were among some of the very first Homo sapiens to inhabit Europe between 30,000 and 45,000 years ago.
Your ancestral lineage split off from its sibling branch about 30,000 years ago. Archaeological evidence indicates it was a time of rapid change in Europe, as a new culture known as the Gravettian moved westward across the continent. The Gravettian people introduced new stone tool technology, as well as novel art forms typified by the distinctive fertility symbols known as "Venus" figurines.
Not long after these men arrived in Europe (at least on the scale of human history), the advancing Ice Age pushed most of the continent's inhabitants back out of the interior and into its southern fringes. Only Iberia, the Italian peninsula and the Balkans were mild enough to support substantial numbers of humans. As a result, the distribution of the haplogroup today reflects the migrations that took place as the glaciers began retreating about 12,000 to 15,000 years ago.
The men of haplogroup I-M438 radiated outward from the Balkans into the eastern half of the continent. Their descendants are found most concentrated in eastern Europe and western Russia, where they make up 40% of the male population in Bosnia and 30% in Croatia. Some, however, moved farther north and west. Nearly 40% of men on the Mediterranean island of Sardinia carry haplogroup I-M438, and they are also relatively common in the Netherlands and Germany. Finally, they can also be found in Sweden, particularly in the northern province of Vasterbotten, where their ancestors likely arrived with the more recent migration of German and Dutch immigrants during the 17th century.