|The weather was kind enough to stop
raining as we photographed and the
clouds even cleared somewhat.
|There were actually more than one
entry of lava into the ocean. This is two
of them. We've been watching the one
on the right because it was the closest
and we could see it best. There were a
couple of other entries to the left of this
that we couldn't see as well.
|QUICKTIME MOVIE (20 MB)
The sound is the wind, not the volcanic activity!
|That's it! And now for the walk back. This was an adventure in itself. Not only were we wet and tired, but it was DARK
too! We'd brought flashlights but soon discovered that the black lava just ate up the light - there were no reflections or
highlights anywhere. So we were left with the tiny point of illumination at our feet and nothing more. We weren't able to
follow the same procedure we'd used coming out: looking ahead for the best course and then finding the easiest way to
go. Instead, we just had to walk and deal with whatever challenges the terrain offered as we came upon it. So
sometimes we'd come upon a drop or rise of a good 6 or 8 feet in front of us and we'd have to work our way around it.
In addition, because of the limited visibility, it was hard to see just where we were putting our feet so we were constantly
having that vertiginous feeling that you get when you're going up or down stairs and you think there's an extra step.
Also we were frequently mis-stepping and almost twisting our ankles. And to top it all off, we were really tired! Our leg
muscles were fatigued and our feet were sore from the walk out and from standing around taking pictures so we didn't
have the kind of control we needed for stumbling around in the dark. We could see other flashes of light and hear other
people as they walked back to the Ranger's Station too. There was no specific path so everyone was just making their
way. I joked to Robin that it was like a march of the zombies, lurching and staggering through the night. Other jokes we
kept telling each other was, "I'm sick of this. I don't want to do this anymore." and "We've been doomed for our sins and
condemned to walk like this for eternity." It did seem endless, but we finally came upon the paved road. It was like
walking after you'd been on a boat for awhile - it took some time to get used to flat, level ground. It was around 11:00 at
night by the time we got back to the car. It had taken us around 2 hours to get out there and about 3 to get back. By
the time we got home, it was about midnight, so our adventure had lasted around 12 hours.
|August 6, 2006
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