QC Blog: Iceland Part Four

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Iceland Part Four

The Golden Circle
I hope you don't mind that I'm continuing my Iceland story as though nothing else is going on here in the States. I know it's the week before election, and trust me, I'm better off talking about Iceland.

The day before, the weather was a typical cloudy day, but on Friday, the weather turned much colder, rainier, and unpredictable. When we started out it was cloudy, but cold. At different points in the trip, mostly when we were on the bus, the sun would peak through the clouds. We drove to Thingvellir, the location of the First Law speaker and First Government. The TH in that word is actually a symbol that looks like a P. Complicated language. We walked through a place where the Teutonic plates in the earth still separate by 1 cm each year. They were high and rocky and beautiful. There was a waterfall here where they executed women and drowned people who committed crimes. Luckily at this point, no rain.

We moved on to Geysir, where all Geysirs get their name, and saw several steaming hot springs in the earth, where one was erupting every 3 minutes or so. At this point, it's freezing rain. I'm trying to get a picture of water spouting in the air at an unpredictable time, through steam that lasts about a second, through a plastic bag surrounding my camera so it won't get wet. Needless to say, after 5 minutes of getting soaked, all I got was a photo of lots of steam, and I bought myself a postcard of the Geysir. We took our Terrible Towels to Geysir and one of our tourmates took our photo there. First we used Patty's camera, then I gave him mine. When he was taking one of the photos, he kept saying that was a really good one, really good. Later, I realized that on Patty's camera, I was holding the towel upside down. And the guy that took our photo was from Boston!! (Patriots fan). He swears he didn't notice, but.......I think he knew.

We drove on, with my jeans soaked all the way up to my thighs, and stopped at Gulfoss for lunch (where they had great lamb stew) to see a huge waterfall there. They told us when the sun is shining, you can see a rainbow across the falls. There were 100 steps to get down to the viewing platform, and those who were truly brave walked all the way down to the rock next to the falls. What you see here is not steam, but spray because I slowed down the speed on the camera. See that rock off to the left? Lots of spray down there. I wasn't up to getting my camera quite that wet, so observed from afar. The wind was cold, and so strong at this point, it dried most of the water from my jeans.

After this, we drove to a "foxie" which was a small waterfall with a salmon run (on left).

Then we drove to Eden, a place with tons of greenhouses. We drove past a church where there was an excavation site over 500 years old being worked on. As we were driving by a hillside, we stopped to take a photo of one of the little houses where the whodafolk live (elves, trolls, magical people). You have to look closely at the photo to see their little home. Then our tour driver took us to Alafoss, where they sold their wool products direct at great prices. I think they are the biggest wool manufacturer in the country.

At the end of this day, we drove to the Viking Ship near Reykjavik to have a group photo taken. The sky at this point was gorgeous and there was no rain for a few seconds. Totally beautiful.

Tomorrow: The Glacier

1 comment:

Jenny said...

Did you plan to have Red, White, and blue rain slickers? I love all your pictures and taking a tour through Iceland with you. Thanks for sharing.

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