As mentioned in a previous post, Iceland has an incredible amount of natural beauty. Much of the country is still wild and unpopulated. You get the sense that the natural environment fights back against the invading humans and is winning. I imagine this is how America must have looked before people began moving west, but unlike in Iceland, the people have largely won. It makes me a little sad, but one thing about mother nature, she bides her time and will outlive us all.

Continental Divide

Continental Divide

Fun Fact: Iceland is on the continental divide and part of it sits in North America and part in Europe. I asked our driver what the people of Iceland consider themselves and he answered quickly that they are European. (I kind of got the feeling that he thought that being American was a bad thing. Hmm…*shrug*)

I wish that I had captions for the following pictures, but frankly ever Icelandic word seems to have 15 letters and 8 syllables so when our driver was telling us the names of these place it was just shooting over my head (I have mentioned my lack of language ability right?).

 

 

 

 

 

 

—I stood on a glacier! Which freaked me out a little as I had visions of falling through the mountain of ice (I know, I know…ridiculous)

—I stood on a glacier! Which freaked me out a little as I had visions of falling through the mountain of ice (I know, I know…ridiculous)

Our Guide standing on a natural ice bridge

Our Guide standing on a solid sheet of ice

 

There were geysirs (pronounced like GEEZER by the Icelanders)

There were geysirs (pronounced like GEEZER by the natives…hehe)

The geyser was no Old Faithful, but still cool because unlike Old Faithful there weren't any guard rails keeping you back. You could jump into if you wanted to be burned in boiling water. Sweet!

The geyser was no Old Faithful,

The bigger geysir

The bigger geysir

 

The geyser was no Old Faithful, but still cool because unlike Old Faithful there weren’t any guard rails keeping you back. You could jump into it if you wanted to experience hot water from the source…Sweet! But the point is they don’t assume you are stupid enough to touch the hot water. What does that say about Americans? Maybe that was why the driver said he was European…

Waterfall

Waterfall

Iceland Dec 2011 096

Mountains

Mountains

The Sunrise - one of the few times in my life when I was up early enough to catch it.

The Sunrise

This was one of the few times in my life when I was up early enough to catch the sun rising and awake enough to take a picture. It helped tremendously that it didn’t rise until around 11 AM.

Friends & I in Reykjavik 1

It’s a teeny bit like where’s Waldo, but I am pretty easy to spot.

hot river

The only place not covered in snow – the hot spring/river

You would think Iceland didn’t have any more surprises but there was just one more