Due to its location on the mid-Atlantic ridge the place tectonic plates diverge, Iceland is legendary for its geothermal vitality and is house to not solely volcanoes, but in addition geysers. Probably the most well-known geothermal space in Iceland is Haukadalur Valley, which is one in every of solely a handful of locations on the earth the place you may see geysers. Not solely that, however there are additionally scorching springs, fumaroles and dust pots. And for these of you not accustomed to all of those phrases…
- A scorching spring, also called a geothermal spring or generally even a hydrothermal spring, is just a pure spring that emits scorching water attributable to geothermal vitality generated from beneath.
- A geyser is a sort of scorching spring during which the water reaches boiling level and periodically erupts withn a extra violent discharge of water and steam.
- A fumarole is a gap on the earth’s floor (or any planet for that matter) the place steam or volcanic gases are emitted.
- A mud pot is a scorching spring or fumarole the place water is briefly provide
The Haukadalur Valley is straightforward to get to and is simply a 1.5 hour drive east-northeast of Reykjavik, positioned on route 35 on the Golden Circle route, with parking simply throughout the highway.
After all, it’s geysers that are inclined to ‘steal the present’ and there are two of word within the Haukadalur Valley. These are Geysir and Strokkur.
Geysir – additionally generally often called Nice Geysir – is the a lot bigger of the 2, and arguably probably the most well-known geyser on the earth, however hardly ever energetic. And by that, I imply it may be years between eruptions – the final time Geysir erupted was in February 2016 however this was its first eruption because the yr 2000. It does, nonetheless, imply that technically-speaking it stays energetic, albeit rare.
Simply 100 metres away is Strokkur which is rather more energetic of the 2 and one of the vital persistent geysers on the earth. It’s mentioned to erupt each 6-10 minutes. While this was largely true, we discovered that the time between eruptions may really be fairly irregular and at one level noticed round three eruptions (of various measurement) in round a 1-2 minute interval.
An eruption begins when a pulse of steam rising from beneath pushes up the water within the pool forming a big dome of water by way of which the steam bursts, forcing the water within the pool skywards. Right here you may see the dome beginning to kind…
…earlier than the ‘bubble’ bursts…
…and steam blasts upwards…
…with some pressure!
As you may see, it’s fairly a spectacle!
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After you have admired each Geysir and Strokkur from floor degree, you may wander alongside the marked paths exploring different marked scorching springs earlier than heading up a hill to admire the location from above.
Eruptions normally attain a top of round 15-20 metres, however may be something as much as 40 metres. Again within the early nineteenth Century, eruptions had been estimated as being as excessive as 60 metres.
Planning a visit to Iceland your self? You may watch a video from our journey to Iceland right here. You will note footage from Strokkur and the Haukadalur Valley between 2m 12s and 2m 22s:
Disclosure: Our journey to Iceland was sponsored by Helly Hansen.