Sand and vegetation in the Highland

  • A strict line was drawn between the black sand and the vegetation
Nov 13 2016

In many places deep in the Highland in Iceland, you can find unusual and almost strange sights. Sometimes dark sites, boiling sites, vast view, strange lava formation and much more.  One such place is near Lakagígar where we have vast carpets of lava, a lot of ash, dust, and black sands.  This is also at an altitude where vegetation has difficulties to grow and sustain.  Sometimes while traveling in the Highland you can experience the dark sand continuing all around you form kilometers after kilometers into the horizon. You can even find places where you only see black sand for hours while driving. Like a black cold desert. But some places seem to have to ability to foster vegetation despite the cold, the altitude and the long winters. The vegetation is the almost neon green/yellow moss that you can see in various places in the Highland.  At one spot we came across this location where a strict line was drawn between the black sand and the vegetation. This looks very peculiar as conditions seem the same. There is almost no vegetation on the sand, but the green moss and vegetation on the other side are dense and colorful growing in the same sand. The reason is probably known to geologists and geographers, but for us the sharp line between the sand and the moss was a puzzle but also fantastic, giving us an excellent photo opportunity.