April 7, 2016

Exploring Planet Iceland

Our land speeder made traversing this planet rather easy, and...it played gay disco music from the 70's (which the native population apparently enjoys).

It's not a stretch to imagine what it is like on Mars while touring Iceland. It's easy to see why feature films often use Iceland's epic scenery as a location for interplanetary travel, and to be honest, there were a few time while here that it felt a bit too much like 'The Martian', than it did Planet Earth. Here are a few more images of this beautiful and remote country.

Danger lurked everywhere, due to the cold temperatures and the atmospheric conditions.

In some valley's. there was some low plant life, which was interesting given the volume of water on this planet.

Some areas were inhospitable, difficult to walk through so we could only document them on film. A distant volcano hinted at the planet's geologic history.

Judging by the foot prints, we were not alone. 

With some elevation, this blue planet displayed a tremendous volume of water. Most of it appeared crystal clear, and safe for drinking. Someone should bottle it and sell it.

Yet some of the water seemed un-drinkable and acidic at first. We found it to be highly alkaline. Blue cyan-bacteria populated some water sources, which the local's used as a skin treatment (i.e. facial masks at the Blue Lagoon? I won't share those pic's.).

Our diet of licorice, vodka and herring made us feel vital and healthy.

A remote outpost.

At first we weren't sure if we could breath the air. I had left my oxygen meter at home.

Sulphureus fumes from fumaroles hinted that everything might smell like rotten eggs (it did).

It may look toxic, but apparently, this water will make you feel and look ten years younger. It was hot, and  therapeutic and  we took advantage of such pools.

Our team also explored many craters - we experienced a wide range of climactic conditions.

There are few places to pee when there are no trees and our space suits were not equipped.

Rainbows were everywhere. actually, this was a snow-bow.
An interesting outpost hinted of another visit by other explorers - it held two cots, and some basic supplies enough for one night in the frigid temperatures.

The language here is difficult to learn. Siri, on our translation device did an admirable job.

Yet sometimes, Google Maps just seemed to make gibberish out of the language. 

Spectacular waterfalls seemed to be at every turn, making a second visit a must.

Our land cruiser handled the rough terrain well, although we got pretty muddy.

...but the  atmosphere was totally breathable, (the design of our space suits was necessary color,  due to the color of the environment and for safety concerns).
We could not help but notice that there was only one sun in this system, but it didn't warm the atmosphere that well.

The solar storms at night were brilliant, and safe. The symbol of the letter 'M' freaked me out a bit.

The Aurora Borealis ended each night with style. We were fortunate to be 2 hours from our basecamp one evening, which allowed us to capture amazing images without interference. We were not looking forward to our journey back home.

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