The Salt Rocks of Iran

Salt domes are located in the Zagros Mountains, in southwestern Iran. Thick layers of minerals such as halite (common table salt) typically accumulate in closed basins during alternating wet and dry climatic conditions. Over geologic time, these layers of salt are buried under younger layers of rock. The pressure from overlying rock layers causes the lower-density salt to flow upwards. Salt rocks with orange, yellow, red and gray lines, which indicates the existence of metal elements,  are also called Rainbow Salt.

Continue reading “The Salt Rocks of Iran”

Stuðlagil Canyon: A basalt column canyon towering over a turquoise glacial river

Stuðlagil  is a ravine in the Eastern Region of Iceland. It is known for its columnar basalt rock formations and the blue-green water that runs through it. It became an unexpected tourist sensation after being shown in a WOW air airline brochure in 2017. The rock formation is 30 meters tall.
The river Jökla runs through the ravine. The water level decreased by 7 to 8 meters due to the Kárahnjúkar Hydropower Plant, which opened in 2009.

Continue reading “Stuðlagil Canyon: A basalt column canyon towering over a turquoise glacial river”

Sail Rock – A monolith on the shore of the Black Sea

Sail Rock is a natural sandstone monolith located on the shore of the Black Sea in Russia. It resembles the outline of a ship’s sail, hence its name. The monolith has a sheer vertical slope confronting the shore of the sea, isolated from the mass of basic rock by geological forces. It is more than three-fourths revealed by the tide and lies perpendicular to the coast. What is most remarkable about this landmark is its proportions. While the cliff is only a little more than one meter thick, its height is about 25 m and its length about 20.
An opening of unclear origin is located in the sail, approximately 2.5 meters above the ground. Many guides state that the formation was a defense against mountain artillery during the Caucasian War. However, this version of the origin of the opening is under some doubt. In 1903, S. Vasyukov, who was investigating the Black Sea coast, wrote after the inspection of the cliff that it was “[..] shot from a battleship by seamen, they released 4 projectiles, but the wall remained firm, although the traces are noticeable, but they nowhere opened the rock […]”.
info:  wikipedia

Sergey S. Dukachev, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Continue reading “Sail Rock – A monolith on the shore of the Black Sea”

Fairy Pools on Isle of Skye

Located at the foot of the Cuillin Mountains, the Fairy Pools are a natural waterfall phenomenon in Glen Brittle on the Isle of Skye. The pools are a vivid aqua blue and are a popular place for wild swimmers who brave the frigid waters.
The habitat of the Fairy Pools hosts a variety of animals and a large number of birds. The physical landscape is predominately rocky, with some boggy areas here and there. The water in the area is typically cold, as the pools are fed by mountain streams. The pools look as though they were pulled from the imagination of J.R.R. Tolkien.

Wojtek Szkutnik, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Continue reading “Fairy Pools on Isle of Skye”

Tour Isabelle – The Largest Double Arch In The Alps

The Tour Isabelle double arch, also named the Tour Percée arch, is a double natural arch, located in Chartreuse Mountains, in the French Alps. Its span is 32 metres (105 ft), which makes it the biggest natural arch in the Alps.
It remained unknown for probably everybody, until its discovery in May 2005, when Pascal Sombardier, who was trekking to write his book Chartreuse inédite : Itinéraires insolites, dealing with lost places of the range, discovered it fortuitously. Its pictures illustrated the front cover of his book, published in 2006 : this double arch became then the symbol of the hidden treasures of the Chartreuse Mountains.
Located in a very remote area, with a difficult and dangerous access, very few guide books, even the most recent ones, mention its existence.
info: wikipedia

David George, CC BY 2.5, via Wikimedia Commons

Continue reading “Tour Isabelle – The Largest Double Arch In The Alps”

Crowley Lake Stone Columns Created by Volcanic Activity

Crowley Lake is a reservoir on the upper Owens River in southern Mono County, California. Upon completion of the reservoir in 1941, strange columnar formations, some of which reached heights of as much as 20 feet, were spotted along the reservoir’s eastern shore. Some described them as stone cylinders connected by fortified stone arches that had been completely covered and obscured for millions of years but which had been gradually unmasked by the incessant pummeling of the lake’s powerful waves, whose constant pounding had eroded the more malleable rock at the base of the cliffs encasing these pillars.
The pillars were simply regarded as oddities until 2015, when geologists realized that they were the result of frigid water from melting snow seeping down into volcanic ash, creating tiny holes in the hot ash, which then rose up and out of these same holes. Researchers have now counted nearly 5,000 of these pillars, which appear in groups and vary widely in shape, size and color over an area of 4000 acres, with some of the columns standing as erect as towering pylons.
info: wikipedia

Continue reading “Crowley Lake Stone Columns Created by Volcanic Activity”

‘Dragon Eye’ lake – Striking natural phenomenon in Japan

The Kagami Numa, the “Dragon Eye lake” in Japan hides a truly mind-blowing phenomenon. Most of the time it’s pretty ordinary looking, but if you go there from late May through early June you might be lucky to witness its transformation into a “dragon eye” shape.
In the late spring, a great amount of snow melts and pours into the pond, and a ring of open water forms around the edge, leaving a white disk in the middle. Next, a pool of water gathers in the center of the white disk, making the pond look rather like a huge eye.

Grüner See – Alpine park that turns into a lake in the summer

Grüner See (Green Lake) is a lake in Styria, Austria, surrounded by the Hochschwab Mountains and forests. The name “Green Lake” originated because of its emerald-green water. During winter, the lake is only 1–2 m (3–7 ft) deep and the surrounding area is used as a county park. However, in spring, when the temperature rises and snow melts, the basin of land below the mountains fills with water. The lake reaches its maximum depth of around 12 m (39 ft). The waters are at their highest in June when it becomes a destination for divers keen to explore the rare phenomenon. A bridge and a bench could also be found underwater, as well as trails and trees.
info wikipedia

By Herzi Pinki (Own work) [GFDL, CC-BY-SA-3.0 or CC BY-SA 2.5], via Wikimedia Commons

Continue reading “Grüner See – Alpine park that turns into a lake in the summer”

Nördlinger – The Medieval Town Built of 72,000 Tons of Diamonds

The Nördlinger Ries is a giant impact crater in Southern Germany. An asteroid hit this region 15 million years ago creating a crater with a diameter of 25km. The town is located in the crater depression. The immense pressure and heat created tons of small diamonds Stone from this area was quarried and used to build the stone buildings. Approximately 72,000 tonnes of diamonds are hidden in Nördlinger’s buddings. They are scientifically valuable but economically not of interest.
Aerial scenes at the end of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory were filmed there.

Wolkenkratzer, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Hd pano, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE, via Wikimedia Commons