Höfn Puffins


We visited Höfn and the Ingólfur cape in the southeastern tip of Iceland.  The cape is named after Ingólfur Arnarson, the first permanent Nordic settler of Iceland.  Now the cape is populated primarily by great skua bird and puffins.  Because of the volcanic sediment there's miles of black sand surrounding the cape.  The skua are very territorial and will fly at you if you get too close to their chicks, whereas the puffins are merely photogenic.  I was surprised to see the local farmers grazing a herd of the saddest looking yaks I'd ever seen.

I've posted a few photos.

Glacier Walk

Today we walked Svinyfallsonhiskull Swinfallsjokeall Svensellsseahshells a big honking glacier which is part of Vatnajökull National Park in Skaftafell, in the south east part of Iceland.  The glacier is atop the Öræfajökull volcano which has errupted twice in recorded history, most recently in 1728. So there's lots of volcanic ash and rock amidst the ice. I didn't see any yaks, but otherwise it was pretty amazing.  Here are some photos.

More Photos About Buildings & Yaks

It's never too late to post photos from a trip until it definitely is. Like after you inadvertently delete 300 photos from your godamn iPhone. I tried getting Jobso on the iPhone to fix this, but the guy doesn't even return calls from Woz, so my expectations are low.  Plus there's that restraining order thing from the time I saw him chowing down on BBQ Pork at Whole Foods in Cupertino.  Vegetarian, my ass.  So these photos are from my Canon G9.  And honestly, I'm not sure they're any better than the iPhone except for the fact that they're higher resolution and they weren't deleted.

These are completely unretouched except for editing I did in PicasaPhoto to crop them, refocus them, change the colors and otherwise make them look more like National Geographic. Heck, some of these I downloaded from National Geographic.  Just kidding.  Mostly.

At any rate, feel free to take these photos and turn them into your last minute Christmas, Hanukkah, Quanza or New Year's greeting card.  You can claim you spent three weeks in Mongolia and it was the time of your life.  I mean, it's not like somebody's gonna really quiz you on it.  And if they do, just tell them the place was big, there wasn't a single Starbucks to be found anywhere and you got food poisoning.  They'll quickly lose interest.  Some topics just aren't that social, ya know?

Lake Hovsgol Photos

Lake Hovsgol was amazing. This was the highlight of our stay in Mongolia and a great way to end things. Although the drive out is not for the faint-hearted, it is a beautiful national park with great hiking. We  saw some ancient Deer Stones near the town of Mörön which were 3,000 years old.  We also met with a family of reindeer herders, though that's gotta be a tough life.

As this was an extension to the National Geographic tour we were on, it was just a few of us, which made for a relaxed pace.  There were notably fewer lawyers, but way more mosquitoes.

Life is always a trade-off.

And here are some photos of people from around the country.

Art in the Capital

Photos from Ulaan Bataar including the National Gallery and the Memorial Museum of Victims of Politcal Repression.

In 1937 Mongolia was run as a Soviet puppet state and Stalin launched purges with brutal ferocity that resulted in the closure and destruction of more than 700 monasteries and the death of more than 30,000 people.

Oddly enough, the purges were implemented by Mongolia's now controversial leader Choibalsan.  His statue remains in front of the Mongolia University and is shown in the photos above.


Click the link below to see on a map.,106.92281&ll=47.91831,106.92281&ie=UTF8&z=12&om=1

Gobi Desert Photos

Our visit to the Gobi Desert was a tremendous experience. We stayed at several different Ger camps and met with local families. Temperatures were reasonable and we had some light rain, which was much appreciated.  Saw lots of camels, sheep, goats.  Unfortunately, still no Yak sitings. 

I'm beginning to worry about the long-term viability of this site.  I may need to raise a series B round if I don't find some yaks soon. We'll be heading north shortly to Lake Hovsgol, so hopefully that will work out.

Still, even noted National Geographic writer and Yakologist Jeremy Schmidt did not appear to be optimistic.

Also, please feel free to leave comments below. Note, I do not take responsibilities for unsolicited time-share pitches or other investment opportunities.