Aug 13, 2005
Sep 24, 2005
Today we dropped anchor in the Harbor of Reykjavik. We knew from the time we got up that in all probability we would have rain before the day was over but didn't have enough sense to take our raincoats. Fortunately we were halfway through our day before the rain began. I knew before we came that a primary cause of Iceland's temperate climate is the proximity of the gulf stream. I was also aware of the Blue Lagoon. What I didn't realize was the scope of geothermal activity on the island. Everywhere we looked we saw steam vents. Geothermal heat is the main source of both heat and power for Icelandic homes. We visited one area that was totally hot. It has one very active geyser that erupts every five to fifteen minutes, a previously active geyser, numerous surface caldrons and more steam vents than we cared to count. We were especially curious about two cement structures we saw with a hole on top and in front that somewhat concentrated the exit of the steam. We never did find out what they were. We saw one mountain the natives call Whale Mountain but to me it looked like a boiling pot with steam venting around the lid. I'm not a geologist but if I were betting, I'd say one of these days the whole top will blow off that mountain. Perhaps the prettiest site was the crater of a dormant volcano. The colors in the walls surrounding the lake were amazing. While we ate our lunch the rain began. It was during the rain that we visited the Golden Waterfall, walked the gorge, toured Reykjavik, and visited the Pearl building. By the time we tendered back to our ship we were cold, wet, and ready for a hot shower.