Öxarárfoss waterfall at midnight, June 2013

This waterfall is Öxarárfoss… literally the river Öxarár waterfall foss (as in force – a term still used in parts of northern England – a dialectic throwback from the days of Norse occupation). It's near the centre of Þingvellir National Park in Iceland. It’s a rift valley between the American and European continental tectonic plates, and the gap is slowly getting wider. 

Ive been here before – on a wintery cold Sunday in November 2008 – but it looked very different back then, encrusted in ice, under battleship grey skies. Fast forward a few years and I was back in Iceland again; this time for the IVRPA 2013 conference, in the height of summer. I was determined to return to this spot again.

It was later than expected when I arrived at Þingvellir; a series of photographic distractions between Selfoss and the national park meant I only arrived at the car park after 11pm, and as luck would have it, found myself shooting this scene at exactly midnight. The pastel skies and midnight sun created a wonderfully magical scene: I shot slowly and in HDR to captures the hues, and turn the water into a mystic milky cascade. A few birds wheeled overhead, but otherwise I had the place to myself. Quite an overwhelming experience.

[This is one of the panoramas from my June 2013 trip to Iceland. You can explore the other views of this incredible countryhere. https://www.360cities.net/sets/iceland-june-2013 ]

Copyright: Joby Catto
Type: Spherical
Resolution: 12866x6433
Taken: 16/06/2013
Uploaded: 30/12/2013
Updated: 28/03/2014


Tags: waterfall; midnight; iceland; geology; landscape; parliament; tectonic; sunset; thingveller; Þingvellir; park; summer
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