Iceland Journal – “Overwhelmed”


“The stars looked down at me from infinite space. We are tiny, they said, but you are insignificant.” 
― Shane Maloney

On the first day of my Iceland trip, something that came to my attention, almost immediately, was the incredible contrast in scale between the land itself and man-made things, particularly houses, which seem so insignificant against the mass of rock and ice that surrounds them.

Here, a farm which has guest cottages, presumably for hikers venturing into the highlands, seems overwhelmed by its grand surroundings. In the background the rock rises ever higher, disappearing into the clouds.

The icecap , far above, covers Eyjafjallajökull, the volcano, which erupted back in 2010, stalling air traffic through most of Europe. Remember that one? The name that nobody could pronounce? It simply became, “That volcano in Iceland.” By the way, I’ve been getting ever better at pronouncing Icelandic places, including this, simply through researching the places I visited and repeating the names, over and over.

Well, that volcano is in this farm’s backyard, and I often found myself wondering what that would be like, having one of nature’s most powerful and dangerous creations so close.

The coastal plain that this farm faces is a vast, flat lava field, created by previous eruptions, and endless streams of meltwater flows through streams lined with black volcanic rock. The farm, occupies a very small place in time and geography. It was only one of many along the way.

Once more, I’m adding the Google Street View link for perspective:,-19.6305847,3a,75y,46.16h,85.69t/data=!3m8!1e1!3m6!1sAF1QipPhOCt95IxOhKF9mW7y7aSM7qa7Fo42YCi3Iv4y!2e10!3e11!!7i7168!8i3584

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 92mm
1/125 sec, f/5.6, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)

7 Comments on “Iceland Journal – “Overwhelmed”

  1. Great photo of the vastness of that mountain. I loved the streetview link – it really brought home just flat it is on the other side!

  2. Wow – the perspective on this photo is certainly an eye-opener!!

    I remember that volcano eruption very well. I was on the last plane that took off out of Barcelona before the airport was closed. At the time I wasn’t sure if that was a good or bad thing 😏

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