The Northern Lights and Lava Fields of Iceland (part 2)

Posted by Anonymous
on Tuesday, March 20, 2007
The Skogar folk museum preserves these 19th-
century homes. Laura Baird

Today we traveled to the south shore, where we saw black-sand beaches, took close-up looks at the snow-covered volcanoes that dominate the view from our hotel room, and spied the Westman Islands, which lie some 5 miles off the coast in the Atlantic. 

We also stopped at the Skogar folk museum and learned what life was like 2 centuries ago. The curator has single-handedly amassed the museum's collection over the course of his lifetime: everything from butter churns, traditional dresses, and fish-skin shoes to a wooden fishing boat used c.1850–1950.

After we ate a lobster dinner in the seaside village of Stokkseyri, we began hunting the aurora borealis. A member of our group devised a chorus for us, sung to the melody of Frère Jacques, to spur us on: "Borealis, borealis, dancing lights, dancing lights; we would like to see you, we would like to see you, shine tonight, shine tonight."

But while the day had been sunny and clear, clouds rolled in during the evening and clouded us out. We found one patch of clear sky, and, while the stars looked amazing, the northern lights eluded us. We have two more nights of searching, though, and everyone remains hopeful. I'll let you know how it turns out.

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