Photographer's Note

Hvannadalshn˙kur or Hvannadalshnj˙kur is a peak in the north-western rim of the ÍrŠfaj÷kull and the Grimsvotn volcano in Iceland and the highest point of the island.

An official measurement completed in August 2005 established its height as 2,109.6 m (previously set as 2,119 m).

The peak is part of the Skaftafell National Park. The route to the top is a popular climb though numerous and frequently hidden crevasses call for experienced mountain guides.

J÷kulhlaup: eruptions under the icecap regularly give rise to glacial bursts, known in Icelandic as j÷kulhlaups. Eruptions may melt enough ice to fill the GrÝmsv÷tn caldera with water, and the pressure may be enough to suddenly lift the icecap, allowing huge quantities of water to escape rapidly. As a result, the GrÝmsv÷tn caldera is monitored very carefully by scientists. When a large eruption occurred in 1996, geologists knew well in advance that a glacial burst was imminent. It didn't occur until several weeks after the eruption finished, but the monitoring allowed the closing of the Icelandic ring road (Hringvegur) when the burst occurred. A section of road across the Skei­arß sandur was washed away in the ensuing flood, but no-one was hurt.

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Additional Photos by Michel Detay (mdetay) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 485 W: 1 N: 1031] (4881)
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