Words do it no justice. The Mýrdalsjökull Glacier in the South of Iceland. The ice has smothered ash from the volcano Katla’s eruptions over centuries causing lines in the ice, like rings in a tree. There is a tunnel that looks like a cave you would find a Bond villain operating out of. I was there and I do not think these photos are real. The color, the light, the lines, the reflections, the experience, all overwhelming to the senses. The history trapped as beauty in the walls make you feel small, yet privileged for seeing it.
Text below is from: Visit South Iceland Travel Giuse www.south.is
The volcano Katla, in the Mýrdalsjökull glacier, has erupted on average every 40 – 60 years. Sixteen eruptions have been recorded since the settlement of Iceland, the last in 1918, but there have probably been more. Katla is one of the most famous volcanoes in the country, and its eruptions usually have very serious consequences. It can actually be regarded as one of the most powerful volcanoes in the world and probably the largest active volcano in the northern hemisphere.
During the eruption, the glacier above the volcanic vent melts and the melted water collects under the ice-cap until it makes its way out under the edge in a violent flood. These are called “Jokulhlaup”. Huge amounts of ice, rocks, silt, and sand carried along by the floodwater. Most of the Mýrdalssandur sand plain has been formed by deposits in past floods.
Katla has been showing signs of unrest recently and some geologists suspect that it might erupt in the near future, since it is way overdue to erupt.
Eruptions of Katla have taken place (since known and recognized human settlement): 1918, 1860, 1823, 1755-56, 1721, 1660-61, 1625, 1612, 1580, 1416, 1357, 1311, 1262, 1245, 1177, 950.