Iceland 2013

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Iceland 2013!

During the October half term break 8 staff accompanied 64 students on an international Geography fieldtrip to Iceland. Whilst this trip has run successfully before this was the first time with such large numbers so there was a real buzz of excitement amongst the year 11’s.

On the first full day of exploration students visited two waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss, which you can walk behind due to the undercutting that has occurred because of erosion, and Skogarfoss, famous for its tumbling wall of water which creates a huge spray. Many students have commented that Seljalandsfoss was their favourite part of the trip and many pictures were taken here! Also on the first day students got to see Sólheimajökull, ‘sun house glacier’, which is retreating rapidly due to the warming climate. The staff who went to Iceland last year certainly noticed a difference in the appearance of the snout of the glacier with it this year containing much more sediment. Next, on to Dyrhólaey and Reynishverfi to see the coastal features students have learnt about such as the cave, arch and stack formation and the destructive waves which make Reynishverfi a rather intimidating place, especially on a windy day!

On the second day of our trip we woke up to blue skies and sunshine whilst our families at home were complaining about wet and windy conditions! First we visited the Eyjafjallajokull visitors centres, set up by a framing family whose farm was covered by ash deposits from the 2010 eruption. Then we travelled on to Gullfoss, the ‘’Golden Waterfall’ which was as beautiful as ever with a rainbow that came out just for us. Geysir was next which seemed more active this year, erupting faster than its 7 minutes average whilst we were there meaning all students managed to get a picture and many a video. The second day was very busy. After Geysir we travelled on the Thingvellir which is the National Park that sits on the Mid-Atlantic ridge which rise in Iceland so the fissures are plain to see. Our final stop before a night of ice skating in Reykjavik was at Hellisheiði geothermal power station where students learnt about how Geothermal power is harnessed and utilised in Iceland to great effect.

On our final full day in Iceland we started with a tour around the centre of Reykjavik, comparing the different urban landscape to our local area and of course, stopped for a spot of souvenir shopping. We then got back on the coach and took a trip to the Reykjanes peninsular where we visited to puddles of boiling mud (stinks of rotten eggs!). Lunch was had in the crater of an extinct volcano before we travelled on to the Blue Lagoon, Geothermal area for a bath in the warm waters. As well as the waterfalls, this was many students favourite part of the trip. No trip to Iceland is complete without a bath in the pools which Icelanders do regularly.

Overall, a great trip was had by all. Students really were a credit to the school and we should be very proud of them. It was great to see how tight knit they were as a year group and they were all willing to help each other with bags and at ice skating. We look forward to offering this trip in 2014.

Mrs M Chapman

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