Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Iceland: Part 4 - where icebergs are born

The highlight of my visit to Iceland was Jökulsárlón, a glacial lagoon on the south coast.  This is where all the natural elements of Iceland come together - volcanoes, sky, ice and water create a breathtaking panorama.

Jökulsárlón

Glaciers calve icebergs into the lake, where they float for about five years.  The freshest ice is brilliant robin's egg blue, while older ice that has been floating around a while turns white.  The black streaks are rock and volcanic ash carried down from the mountains.

Jökulsárlón

Jökulsárlón

Jökulsárlón

The icebergs are all different sizes and I found them all spectacular.

Jökulsárlón

Jökulsárlón 

This chunk of ice is crystal clear.  After about 10,000 years as part of a glacier, the pressure squeezed out all air bubbles.

10,000 year old ice

Looking head-on at Vatnajökull glacier.

Jökulsárlón

As the icebergs melt, they get small enough to float down the outlet river to the ocean.

Icebergs floating to the sea

And this is where they die, like frozen jellyfish on the beach.

Where icebergs go to die

See many more Iceland photos on my Flickr page.

Previously:
Iceland: Part 3 - volcanic sculptures
Iceland: Part 2 - enchanted landscapes
Iceland: Part 1 - where rainbows begin and end