Ryan's Journal

"My life amounts to no more than one drop in a limitless ocean. Yet what is any ocean, but a multitude of drops?" — David Mitchell

A Night Without Stars

Posted from Myrdalssandur, Iceland at 11:55 pm, June 30th, 2008

First full day on my own, and I spent most of it re-visiting sites from the photo tour:

  • Wakeup was at 6:00 AM in Thingvellir National Park and I spent about two hours photographing geese before any people had yet arrived.
  • The next stop was Geysir (prounouned “Gay-zeer”), home of the gay-zeer for which all gay-zeers are named. Sadly someone chucked a rock into the gay-zeer in the 1950’s and it went from shooting 250 feet into the air several times a day to only shooting fifteen feet into the air during major earthquakes. Luckily the nearby Strokkur gay-zeer is still unblocked and erupts every few minutes to entertain the crowds that pour from numerous tour buses.
  • The next adventure was past fields filled with horses (they are soft) and then along the foothills of the Hekla volcano and eventually back to the Ring Road along the coast. There was a nap included in that stretch of travel as well.
  • Once on the Ring Road God sent perfect waterfall photography weather (dry with overcast) so I stopped at the Skogafoss Waterfall, and per Rod’s recommendation did some hiking along the river above the falls. This river should be the inaugural inductee into the waterfall hall of fame – I finally stopped hiking after the fifth waterfall, all of which are exceptionally photogenic.
  • And now I’m parked for the night along the coast on a black sand beach formed when a volcano erupted under the glacier about twelve years ago and flooded a massive area with dirt and debris. The volcano is expected to erupt on a regular basis every couple of decades causing floods, ash, poisonous gases and other devastation – when asked about the upcoming destruction the volcano will unleash on his country Villi Knudsen noted that “it is going to be complicated to film”.

Strokkur Geyser

Strokkur Geyser beginning an eruption. The eruption process: cooler water on top of the geyser traps superheated water below. The superheated water eventually flashes to steam and pushes to the surface, causing an eruption. The eruption then causes all of the Japanese tourists to start clapping.

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