If there is one word that comes to mind repeatedly during excursions into the Highlands of Iceland, it is Strangeness. Here, among the last great wilderness areas outside of the polar extremes, you are often met by sights that connoisseurs of the cliché are wont to describe as “surreal.”
This series aims to collect a new class of visual objects under one umbrella. These are not the familiar attractions spelled out on the map – the dreamlike mountains, lava fields, volcanic craters, waterfalls, lakes, and rivers – that define Hálendið (“The Highlands”). Rather, these are transient landforms or an innominate tranche of the landscape that, under certain conditions, make you think you are under the spell of Photoshop sorcery.
Last month we came upon a Strangeness near Rauðufossafjöll.
The Gems collection.
This final image provides context for the two images above. Notice the small informal parking lot (top centre-right of the frame) used by hikers.
Can you say a little more about how the feature arises?
I don’t know the explanation for this particular landform (most likely there is a hot spring underneath). However, this area lies squarely within the regime of the Torfajökull glacial volcano system which is a complex of sub-glacial volcanoes that are still active. The land underneath is geologically alive and the resulting processes lead to many features that are shockingly strange. Eg. Rauðauga, featured in a post here on this blog.
Very curious. Thank you for sharing.
Sometimes the beauty of desolate places reminds one of where our planet came from. Beautiful compositions Rajan!
Thank you, Dan.
You need a highly trained eye to spot and cull out that ‘eye’ among that scenic chaos. Great work, bravo!
I don’t disagree. 🙂
Not photoshop sorcery. This is the work of the devil herself. I can almost smell the Sulphur in the crater.
Yes, the devil’s workshop is an apt description.