By Tessa R. (Trinidad & Tobago 2017) One remarkable connection that I made was on our last full day. I was talking with Courtney about the turtle eggs and their predators. We were talking about how frustrating the birds are and how they eat the live hatchlings. But Courtney mentioned that if it weren't for the birds whom were eating all of the dead eggs (mainly dead eggs) then the beach would be gross, moldy and smell horrid. This connection stuck with me because even though the vultures are "annoying" they are vital to the all around health of the various ecosystems of the beach. ... See MoreSee Less
Out of the thousand of waterfalls that reside in Iceland, on the 3rd day of our trip, we visited Gljúfrabúi, Seljalandsà, and the Skógafass waterfall. Gljúfrabúi and Seljalandsá are neighbors to one another while Gljúfrabúi was less voluminous than its neighbor. Gljúfrabúi is quite the hidden gem in which it seemed completely out of a fantasy world. In order to see Gljúfrabúi, we had to carefully walk over a river inside a cave in which you walk right into the roar and power of the waterfall. As we were in the cave, I noticed the rocks covered in moss. Our clothes and hair did not stand a chance against all of the waterfalls, we were all completely soaked, as if we all just finished taking a shower. After we finished exploring these two waterfalls, we traveled to Skógafass which is a massive waterfall reaching up to 62 meters high. Legend has it that an old man hid his pot of gold behind Skógafass waterfall. One day three men discovered a large chest and they tried to throw an iron ring over it to bring it down but the iron ring became loose and the mission was aborted. Now, the iron ring can be found in the Skogar folk museum. ... See MoreSee Less
Thoughts by Calla (Trinidad & Tobago) I encourage everyone to go snorkeling. Going snorkeling gives everyone a view of the coral reef that may not be given to them before. They can see the fish that thrive in the coral and how peaceful the habitat is. The trash we produce destroys these amazing homes in the ocean. If we all just took a moment to look at the reefs our world we be smarter and more prepared for the future. ... See MoreSee Less
Went kayaking July 20 in Stokkseri, Iceland.. Paddle starts through high meadow and meanders through tiny streams until the North Atlantic. Clear sky's with lots of sun. Could see Mt Hekla in the distance. ... See MoreSee Less
Iceland Update July 16, 2017 By Tristian Glacier Lagoon On Saturday we went to a glacier lagoon. We arrived at the lagoon and we were suited up in a big, water resistant jacket. We walked down to the lagoon as Mr Katz was taking pictures of all of us in our coats. We got into our boat and we were off. Our guide started to explain stuff about the glacier to us as we were riding around. He explained to us that glaciers and icebergs got their blue tint from being compressed for years and eventually blue is the only color that refracts out of the ice. We also learned that icebergs got a sort of mushroom shape because as they melted, they get lighter, and the part that's under the water that melts quicker as opposed to the part above the water, rises to the surface giving them their shape. As we were approaching the glacier, we stopped the boat to get ice from out of the water and our guide showed us how clear the water was. He then passed around the ice and let us bite pieces off of it. Seeing the huge glacier was incredible. As we rode to shore, I thought about how I wanted to come back to see the glaciers again someday. ... See MoreSee Less
Thoughts by Calla (Trinidad & Tobago) A lesson I learned throughout the duration of the trip is that I need to be careful what I leave behind. The tiniest things such as using straws or kicking up sand in the ocean can destroy a habitat or an animal life. Straws can litter the beaches or oceans and destroy a turtle's habitat. Plastic bags can get wrapped around an animal's neck and strangle them. The sand kicked up in the ocean can destroy the beauty of the coral reef and it's inhabitants. Overall, the lesson learned is to think before you act. Make sure you know where your trash is going and how you can prevent excess trash. ... See MoreSee Less
Iceland Update July Camping Trip Food Blog By Abby After determining that what we were eating was in fact wolf fish and NOT wolf eel, Mr. Katz seasoned and cooked it to our delight. Along with the fish, we had a choice of rice, cold sauce, a salad, and a mixture of red pepper, onion, and garlic. For dessert we had a yogurt Icelanders refuse to call Greek yogurt (it is), to top it off many of us mixed in jam or nutella.
For our first breakfast while camping, we had oatmeal, bread, and sour milk. I know it sounds very boring, but to make it more enjoyable we had brown sugar, raisins, and jam for the oatmeal. The bread was often topped with jam or nutella. And to no surprise the only person to eat the sour milk was our Icelandic guide. **edit: Scratch that. I tried the sour milk and I am pleasantly surprised to report that it was actually really good. Also, we had this breakfast everyday (plus some leftovers). So, instead of boring you with the same thing over and over again, pictures are attached.
After breakfast we all made our own sandwiches. We were able to choose from things such as gouda, smoked lamb (a favorite), ham, salami, cucumber, and tomato. I personally was amazed by the cheese slicer they used and I am confused on how I have never seen one before. I have decided that out of everything we have seen, the cheese slicer is something that has changed my life (don't judge, I just really love cheese). We also had this everyday.
While at Vík, Bjartur (our guide) bought us dried fish to try before dinner. Surprisingly most people liked it, and I was definitely not one of them (but, it's always important to try new things!). Afterwards, we started off with an amazing asparagus soup that was creamed based. Then, we had pasta with bell peppers, onion, garlic, carrots, and beef. For dessert we had a marble pound cake (kaka in Icelandic, funny right), which went so fast because of how good it was.
For our last dinner with Tristan, we had quite an intricate meal. For a starter we had burger crackers with a drizzle of cod patté and a salad with cucumbers and tomato. As a side we had cooked red peppers and onions, rice, and cold sauce (which is basically homemade ranch) for both the main course or the salad. Our main part of the meal was salmon cooked by our amazing guide and was probably the best and freshest salmon I have ever had. For dessert we had the pound cake again. We were playing ninja one minute, and a second later everyone was running to go to the kitchen tent to get their piece.
Our last dinner while camping was very bittersweet. It was a very fun night, but it was sad to think that it was our last time doing it. We had smoked lamb, rice, potatoes, and tomato soup (which was supposedly Mr. Katz's grandmothers recipe, but we all know he tends to exaggerate). Because we had all taken shifts doing dishes, it was up to a game of ninja to decide who would have to complete the task. Fortunately, I was not one of the first ones out, Gabby and Todd took that honor. Overall, the food on this trip was so much better than I ever thought it was going to be thanks to Katz and Bjartur. I will truly miss the meals and times we all shared together. I didn't really know anyone very well going into this, and now I feel that I have gained so many new friends. Thank you to everyone who made this happen (that's you Tara!) and Iceland for being such an amazing experience. We'll miss you and everything you brought. ... See MoreSee Less
Thoughts by Elsa (Trinidad & Tobago) In the future I will try to be more aware of what I throw away and try to teach others to do the same. The lesson this has taught me was that each and every person has a great effect on the wildlife on this planet and even though it may not seem like we make a difference, we definitely do. I will try to educate my family and friends on the things they can do to help out our animal friends-things such as not using straws, buying things with as little plastic as possible, and not being excessive when using packaging materials. I am so happy that this trip has opened my eyes to some of the problems about the world so i can continue to try to fix them. Thank you so much for guiding us and teaching us about the culture and wildlife, I greatly appreciate it and hope you continue to give others the experience that I have gotten. You helped me create many lifelong memories and stories to tell. Thank you! ... See MoreSee Less
Iceland Update July 18 By Emilio Gullfoss, located in the southwest part of Iceland, probably got its name from the way the light shines off the light from cold water when it falls. Another story about how the waterfall got its name was that a man named Gulfoses could not support the idea of another man having his gold when he died, so he put it in a safe/trunk of sorr, and threw it in the waterfall, and ever since it bears his name. The first thing that came to my mind when i saw the waterfall, was Niagara Falls. I don't' mean it in the way that its the same old same old but as in it resembled the beauty and the feeling of awe when i first saw Niagara falls. Even though Niagara falls is larger, my favorite one is Gulfoss because I like the surrounding area better and I really liked that we were able to climb next to it and all the way to the top. Overall it was an amazing experience that when I am older ill be able to look back at it as a happy place and will be able to tell my grandchildren about. www.facebook.com/GoGreenEdventures/photos/a.10155420476919360.1073741854.71847569359/101554205184...By Emilio Gullfoss, located in the southwest part of iceland, probably got its name from the way the light shines off the light from cold water when it falls. Another story about how the waterfall got its name was that a man named Gulfoses could not support the idea of another man having how gold when he died, so he put it in a safe/trunk of sorr, and threw it in the waterfall, and ever since it bears his name. The first thing that came to my mind when i saw the water fall, was Niagara Falls. I dont mean it in the way that its the same old same old but as in it resembled the beauty and the feeling if awe when i first saw Niagara falls. Even though niagara falls is larger, my favorite one is Gulfoss because I like the surrounding area better and I really liked that we were able to climb next to it and all the way to the top. Overall it was an amazing experience that when I am older ill be able to look back at it as a happy place and will be able to tell my grandchildren about. ... See MoreSee Less
By Olivia H. (Trinidad & Tobago) By watching this connectedness between all other living things I learned that we need each other in order to thrive also. We are animals, we belong in this circle of connectedness too, and sometimes we need to rethink our priorities. Humans have a major impact of this world, both good and bad. I learned if we can simply take baby steps and get back our sense of community like the plants and the animals, a natural balance can happen in our lives. ... See MoreSee Less
Vatnajökull, the largest glacier in Europe, spreads out at 3,127 miles. It's average thickness is around 1,300 ft. It's English translation is water glacier. During the actual walk into the glacier we apparently went of trail and ended up going to a dead end. While we were walking to the dead end we had to jump around small crevasses as well as puddles since many of them were far deeper then they appeared. The ice shows that we were given kept on loosing so often times part of my foot wouldn't be fully in the 'shoe' this caused me to lose my footing a few times. On the way back we were on a very narrow path and bellow us was a crevasse not a very large on but large enough to get your leg stuck through and then I lost my footing there. Someone reached out but on instinct I jumped and since it wasn't a very far jump I made it safely though it still was fairly scary. Eventually we went back on trail and then we went up a glacier hill when we went up then we lingered for a bit and eventually a rainbow came out. I unfortunately don't have any pictures due to my phone already being dead though many of the others posed with the rainbow. ... See MoreSee Less