Tuesday, 25 October 2016

The Frozen Ice Balls of Lake Michighan

Winter is just approaching to the Lakeshore, and with it, all of nature's cold-weather beauty. West Michigan is no stranger to naturally occurring spectacle in the winter months. In the every winter, on the shores of Lake Michigan and on Stroomi beach in northern Tallinn, Estonia, myriads frozen ice balls form naturally.

Ice caverns form along its several piers and lighthouses, gusting wind and ice form strange sand formations on its beaches, and waves repeatedly pummel the shoreline, freezing anything close by in place. Thus, the Ice balls range from a few inches to more than feet across. So, the ice balls form when chunks of ice break off the huge ice sheets that coat parts of the lake in the winter, and as the waves toss the ice blocks around the lake, additional ice forms around them in layers and the ice blocks gets bigger and bigger just like snowballs or hailstones.

The pounding of the waves shape the ice into spheres. Moreover, a related phenomenon is seen on Stroomi beach on the Gulf of Finland. The ice balls can be seen tumbling in the waves, and gradually merging with each other to form larger pieces. If the phenomenon continues, waves will ultimately push the larger, fully-formed ice balls to shore. According to the German news portal Spiegel Online, a very precise condition is required for ice balls to form. Because the sea must also be flat, and the base must not drop precipitously. These surroundings prevail on the Gulf of Finland against Estonia. 

Thursday, 13 October 2016

The Colored Pebbles of Lake McDonald

In The Glacier National Park of U.S. state of Montana, close to the border with Canada, is home of over 700 lakes. However, out of them only 131 of these lakes have names and about 200 lakes are over five acres in size, and a dozen of them surpasses thousands of acres, which in rare for mountain lakes. Moreover, the lakes waters are extraordinarily clear, owning to the yearlong low temperatures that forbid the growth of planktons. It is not rare to see details on the bottom of the lakes at depths of 30 feet or more. 

Furthermore, the one of most prominent feature of some lakes is the existence of a variety of colored rocks and pebbles just beneath the water surface and on the shores. Thus the rocks series color varies from maroon to dark red, and from blue to green. However, colored pebbles are seen in plenty on the shores of Lake McDonald on the western side of the park. The stunning lake McDonald is the largest of the lakes of Glacier National Park with a surface area of 6,823 acres, also the longest, at over 15 kilometers, as well as the deepest lake at 141 meters. The Lake McDonald is home to various native species of trout, and other game fish. However, catchable species include, but are not limited to west-slope cutthroat trout, rainbow trout, bull trout, lake trout, Lake Superior whitefish, mountain whitefish, kokanee salmon, and suckers.

The beautiful green rocks can be seen at “Otokomi Lake”, whereas the dark-colored rocks found at the upper end of Lake McDonald, along McDonald Creek and around Trout Lake are the result of subjecting the red and green iron-rich rocks to heat and pressure. These natural rocks are actually all around Glacier National Park, and were created at different eras. Because, when the glaciers came, it broke down the rocks into miniature fragments and the rivers washed them away. Several of these got deposited onto the lakes and "tarns" lakes formed by filling the bottoms of ice-scoured amphitheaters. Although the water erosion then rendered them into smooth pebbles!

Quoting from the book “Glacier-Waterton International Peace Park” by Vicky Spring and Tom Kirkendall:

The rock color is determined by the presence or absence of iron and the bright red rocks found along the Grinnel Glacier trail were deposited in a shallow ocean environment where the iron was oxidized by the tidal exposure to the air. Further, rocks with this coloration frequently have old ripple marks or ancient mud crack lines. The rich green-colored rocks were shaped in deeper water than the red rocks. Though these rocks comprise the same quantities of iron-bearing minerals, they did not have the same revelation to oxygen and the amount of oxidization was limited.

Friday, 9 September 2016

The Granite Town, The Strange 65-ft Tall Rock Formations just Discovered in Siberia

The granite town, a bizarre 65ft-tall rock formations just discovered in Siberia. The rocks tower up above the ground, knocking together like granite skyscrapers as they keep watch over the vast Siberian landscape. The magnificent photographs are among the first ever taken of the rare rock formations in the Ulakhan-Sis mountain range - a flawless natural wonder as yet undiscovered by the tourist market. The hint of the impressive scenery the magical destination above the Arctic Circle can finally be put on the map. 
Alexander Krivoshapkin was the first who snapped this magical place. He went there in a helicopter whilst counting wild reindeer herds around Ulakhan-Sis in the north-east of Siberia. Therefore, his photographs are believed to be the first ever taken of the structures, known as Sundrun Pillars. However, in the middle of the bare tundra were buttes some 10 to 20m high up to 65ft, standing in groups and alone, like some warriors on a march, who were suddenly petrified with malicious intent of a local shaman centuries ago or like the ruins of an ancient city, which was inhabited by a hitherto unknown people. This is one of the most inaccessible and practically unknown areas of Yakutia, the mountain ridge of Ulakhan-Sis. The stone sentries are known as 'kisilyakhi', in the local Yakut language from the word 'kisi' meaning man. The shapes are believed to have been sculpted by relentless freezing and thawing of the granite and surrounding sandstone.

Friday, 26 August 2016

The Lowari Pass, Pakistan

Lowari Pass is also called Lowari Top is a high mountain pass that connects Chitral with Dir in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. Lowari Top / Lowari Pass is a relatively low pass, by far the lowest pass to enter Chitral, the others all being 12,000 to 15,000 feet. The Lowari Top crosses the Hindu Raj Mountains, a spur of the higher Hindu Kush, and on the Chitral side of Lowari Top are the people of Ashret, whose native is Palula language and were assigned by the Mehtar of Chitral to be the guardians of Lowari Top.

Although, Lowari Top is shut down by snow from late November to late May every year. During this difficult time, jeeps cannot cross so peoples must travel by foot. The local peoples are so strong and powerful, so they’re habitual of crossing Lowari Top by foot. This is extremely treacherous, as there are high mountains on each side of Lowari Top, and a fatal avalanche can come at any moment without warning. Therefore, in every winter a few individuals are killed by avalanches while crossing Lowari Top. So, their dead bodies are buried under the snow and it is only happens when the summer comes and the snow melts that their dead bodies are found and their fate learned. However, Lowari Top remains one of widespread place because it is the shortest route from Chitral to Peshawar. Although, the alternative way would be down the Kunar River to Jalalabad through hostile Afghan Territory or the much longer route across Shandur Top to Gilgit. 

Moreover on the other side which is called Der reside Khowars, some of whom make their living as porters carrying loads across Lowari Top. More than 60 years ago, when in 1954, the Mehtar of Chitral was killed when his airplane crashed into Lowari Top. However, in these days, even PIA pilots often turn back because of winds and fear of crossing Lowari Top. The word "Top" is thought not to be the English word "top" but a word from an ancient language no longer spoken there. The Lowari Top is one of the four major mountain passes to enter Chitral. Hence, the others are the Dorah Pass from Badakshan in Afghanistan, Shandur Top from Gilgit, and Broghol from the Wakhan Corridor in Afghanistan. Furthermore, in 2009 the Lowari Tunnel was constructed beneath Lowari Pass by a Korean company.  Though, the tunnel was abandoned presently thereafter and has since fallen into shabbiness.

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

World's Longest and Highest Glass Bridge Opens in China's.

If you love aerial view, then China’s latest glass-bottomed bridge is perfect site you can’t missed. The structure crosses two peaks in the mountains of Zhangjiajie, inspired with American blockbuster Avatar. It is easily called world’s highest and longest glass bottomed bridge. The massive number of visitors flocked on the grand opening day of bridge, hardly left any space to see sheer drop below. The bridge spans roughly 1,400 feet across two peaks and is suspended 300 meters above a sheer drop. The structure is 19ft 8in wide and made of some 99 panels of clear glass which can carry up to 800 people at the same time. 

So, it crosses a canyon that divides two mountain cliffs in Zhangjiajie Park, in China's central Hunan province. The visitors feel awe-inspired by this bridge never afraid, perfect safe place, offering a unique experience. The glass is robust quality, can’t even broke with hammer or drive car on it. Therefore, only 8,000 people each day will be allowed to cross the bridge and only 600 at any one time. However, cameras and selfie sticks are banned, and people wearing stilettos will not be allowed to walk on the bridge. A Hollywood photographer visited the area in 2008, taking images which were used for the film. So, whenever you visit China, it’s a must visit place will give you unique experience of life.