Vikings and steam

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August 24th 2019
Published: August 24th 2019
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August 24, 2019 – Reykjavik, Iceland – Weather: 55°F/13°C, partly cloudy with the sky clearing to blue sunny skies, wind 8.1 mph, humidity 71°

We awoke this morning to a very quiet Reykjavik harbour. Even though we are docked in a container port area there was no activity at the docks. The city is having a festival today that includes a marathon this morning, street parties all through the day culminating in a firework display just as we are leaving port this evening at 11:00 pm.

Our tour today was called “Lunar Landscapes”. Our first stop was in the village of Grindavik where the Viking World Museum is located. We spent an hour in the museum which is home to a full-scale replica of the Gokstad Viking longship that was discovered in Norway in 1882.

On our way down the peninsula we drove out to the Krýsuvík area with its bubbling sulfuric mud pools and steam vents dotting the valley. We had visited this site 15 years ago and we noted today that back then we were permitted to view the vents much closer than today. On our way there, our tour guide informed us that there had been a 3.5 magnitude earthquake overnight in the area. Our guides, on all the tours we have been on in Iceland, have indicated that they are always expecting a bigger quake “soon”.

The final stop was at Kleifarvatn Lake, which is 300-meters-deep and fed by natural ground water. Several years ago, the lake started to disappear when a fault opened beneath it and the water started to drain away. A subsequent quake sealed the crack and the lake started to refill. The lake has been stocked with Arctic char to encourage sport fishing. The surrounding rugged lunar landscape created by the various forms of lava flows is a mecca for hikers and other outdoor enthusiasts.

Tonight, we are going to enjoy a special Indonesian themed dinner known as the

“Rijsttafel Dinner” in the Pinnacle Grill. I’ll let you know about it later.

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