Local Heart, Global Soul

February 6, 2016

Eyjafjallajökull, THAT Volcano… But Can YOU Pronounce It’s Name?

Filed under: Eyjafjallajökull Volcano,ICELAND,PHOTOGRAPHY — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Cast your mind back a few years to  the summer of  2011 when an until then unknown volcano erupted and created havoc for European and transatlantic flights.

If you remember this event, you will also probably remember that the name of the volcano in question was every News readers nightmare with pronunciation errors galore.

In fact many simply threw their hands in the air and said ” THAT” volcano…

Well it seems that this has now become a ” must learn” name for ever tourist to Iceland and to make it easier to master, T-shirts, postcards, spoons, coffee mugs and fridge magnets are amongst the things that now carry your first small lesson in mastering your most basic Icelandic.

The volcano’s name of course is “Eyjafjallajökull’  and Family Kiwidutch, having a fanatical linguist in shape of Himself, felt it very necessary to bring home  few items with this lesson printed into it.

Himself rather literally “has the t-shirt” and we bought some coffee mugs and a fridge magnet as well.

This now means that you can arm yourself, stretch your linguistic knowledge…. and, should this volcano ever decide to ever get temperamental ever again, be one of the first to fall over laughing at your local and national newsreaders terrible efforts to pronounce this name. Of course if the volcano stays quiet but you run into a visitor in your location who just happens to hail from Iceland, you can also proudly parade your linguistic prowess by casually slipping in the name of Eyjafjallajökull into the conversation, and stand back to see their eyes widen in surprised approval, taking your rank as educated world citizen up a notch or two.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

February 4, 2016

Eyjafjallajökull: The Highlight Of Our Trip…

Filed under: Eyjafjallajökull Volcano,ICELAND,Icelandic Landscape,PHOTOGRAPHY — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

We leave Iceland’s Seljalandsfoss waterfall and head to the destination that we have been heading for as the last “item” in the travel loop we are taking today.

The staff at our hotel recomended a visitor center that has been set up since the eruption of the Eyjafjallajökull volcano in 2010 that bought air travel to a standstill all over Europe.

We arrive to find a compact building, one half of which has been made into a small movie theatre for the screening of a film that documents the lead up to the eruption, the eruption and both the short and long term aftermath.

Much of the footage is from local Icelandic television, is very personal and clearly shows that people arrived swiftly from all over Iceland to help shovel ash of land and buildings, rescue stock and help with the rapid evacuation of farms in the area effected by the ash fall.

After the film showing it was especially surprising to find that the farmer’s wife who featured predominantly in the film, was the same lady serving us at the souvenir counter in the small room next door.

This visitor centre is a family run affair that came about due to the enormous volume of tourists who descended on the farm after the eruption, and the surreal experience of having tour bus loads of Japanese tourists delicately scooping ash into little plastic bags as the Icelandic family attempted to shovel thick layers of the stuff off their roof, garden, vehicles and every conceivable surface.

The lady is wonderfully friendly, delighted that we recognised her from the film (apparently many people just rush in, look and rush out, not making the connection as to who is serving them behind the counter), and very patient to all of the questions we have. There are information boards dotted around, and from them I learn:

Eyjafjallajökull (1,651m) is among the oldest active central volcano in Iceland. The mountain, about 800,000 years old, is built of lava flows from interglacial periods and hyaloclastites (tuff) from glacial periods.

Volcanic fissures line the flanks and ridges radiate west and east from the summit. A small caldera (2.5 km across) has formed in the summit region. The glacier cover (75 square kilometres) is 50-100 metres thick: in the caldera the depth reaches 250m. Recent eruption sites are indicated.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Lulls between eruption phases in Eyjafjallajökull typically lasted about 36 hours. In the early hours of 14 April 2010, a fissure 2 kilometres long opened up under te 200m thick ice in the summit crater, cutting through the southern rim.

Magma from two main vents melted it’s way through the ice and soon grey, fine-grained ash was carried high into the air. The ash fell mainly on the area to the east and south of the volcano and was carried by winds to mainland Europe.

The maximum initial eruption rate was about 1,000 cubic metres of tephra per second. The ash was formed partly by expansion of volcanic gas in the intermediate magma and partly on contact of magma with ice and water during the first week.

The magma that surfaced at the summit at Eyjafjallajokull was formed through the mixing of basalt rising from below and silica-rick magma that may have been in place under the volcano since the 19th Century eruption. The fine-grained ash became coarser as activity declined. Lava lumps and bombs were thrown out of the crater, accompanied by loud booms.

Lava started to flow and melted it’s way out of through the outlet glacier Gigjokull. The lava flow ceases, but explosive activity increased again in early May. After 18 May the eruption declined and continuous activity was over by 23 May. The total amount of tephra erupted came to 250-300 million cubic metres and the lava volume was 25-30 million cubic metres. As dense magma, the volume of eruptives is estimated at 0.17 cubic kilometres.

Although the Eyjafjallajökull eruption temporarily threatened those under Eyjafjallajökull, people never gave up. Farming continued and crops and animals were nurtured. Welcome to the Visitor Centre, where you can get a “taste” of life at the foot of Eyjafjallajökull, of the eruption and it’s influence, and see how Man and Nature coexist through the good times and the bad.

We are so impressed with this place that we decide to buy all of our souvenirs here, and although Himself and I feared that Kiwi Daughter and Little Mr might be bored here, they enjoyed it immensely, raving about it not only at the time but also telling everyone back at home in the Netherlands that is was without doubt the highlight of their trip. In fact they still talk about their visit to this place every time the word “Iceland” is mentioned, so we are delighted that a far longer than predicted car journey has paid off.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The Eyjafjallajökull volcano is located at the very back and under the cloud, behind  the red roofed buildings…

around iceland 11d (Small)

 

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Blog at WordPress.com.