Hell

Trip Start May 08, 2009
1
10
17
Trip End Jun 29, 2009


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Flag of Iceland  ,
Monday, May 18, 2009


We have been married 10 days! Wow! Married! Crazy! We are driving around Myvatn in the northeast of the country. There are craters everywhere. Reminents of volcanoes. What would we do if one erupted? Is there a procedure? There are big black jagged rocks everywhere. Yesterday we passed the steaming fissures and bubbling mud pots. Blue mud burped and puddled in oily brown residue. These pots had caked and cracked walls and were ringed with bright red sand and orange rocks. The fissures were stone cairns, chalky white with lime green pustules of cotton baton mineral build-up. Even now we can see the steam rising in the distance. At 10pm yesterday we drove through the steam fields, it was like a bleak caricature of industry with greasy trucks and steel cauldrons stet up around the valley. In some ways it was like how one might picture Hell. But it was awesome to see as a tourist. One of those places to visit but you wouldn't want to live. We came upon a pool, glowing blue, steaming, but there were dangers signs everywhere not to swim - the water would melt your skin off. Despite the heat under the Earth's crust, this area has been getting a lot of snow. Out #1 highway was closed two weeks ago due to snowfall. We could not view the largest waterfall in Europe (Dettifoss) because the road was impassable. We can really believe that after our expeditions up the Oxi highway yesterday (really, over a mountain, giving true meaning to the word Highway). We, in our Subaru, climbed up up up nearly to the clouds and into the snow. At this moment we are driving in the mountains still and we have come across a frozen lake. Hard to imagine that until WWI, people have to commute along these mountains by foot for trade. It wasn't until 1987 that this Ring Road Highway #1 was built. Recently, in 1977, a huge volcano exploded and it seems there was a lot more volcanic activity in the 1800s. How could someone walk in this environment? Never knowing if a volcanoes would erupt beside you, always risking you life in setting your feet down in a spot which could give way to a crater or waterfall. A lot of the gourd is hidden under snow drifts - I wonder how many people have died on this land.
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