Eyjafjallajokull is cone shaped, the 6th biggest glacier in
Iceland. It is situated to the north of Skˇgar and to the west of the bigger glacier
The ice-cap of the glacier covers an active volcano (1666m in height) which has erupted rather
frequently since the ice-age. The last eruption was in 1821-23, causing a fatal glacier run. The crater of the volcano has a diameter of 3-4 km, the glacier covering an extension of
about 100 km▓.
Svereal steep glacier tongues protrude from the mountain. Two of them Gigjokull
and Steinholtsjokull drop into two small proglacial lakes
filled with floating calved Icebergs. The lake in front of Gigjokull is called
Jokullon. The lake in front of Steinholtsjokull is smaller. River
Steinholtsß flows out it into Krossß. These lakes
are formed by encircling walls built up by tons of terminal moraine.
In 1967 there was an enormous landslide onto Steinholtsjokull.
On january 15 th 1967 at 13.47.55 there was an explosion in the cliff
Innstihaus. It can be timed because the earthquake meters in
KirkjubŠjarklaustur picked up the turbulance. When the landslide of about
15 million cubic meters hit the glacier a huge wave of air, ice,
water and huge cliffs started to run from under the clacier and into the lagoon
at the foot of the glacier. The wave got as high as 75 m from
the floor of the valley. The cliffs stopped soon afterward but water and ice
touched the floor of the old brigde over Markarfljˇt one and a half hour later.
Under the hills of Eyjafjallajokull stands the mountainridge Eyjafjoll but
they were once part of the Atlantic coastline. The sea now being
in a distance of about 5 km from there, the former coastline left behind sheer
cliffs with a multitude of beautiful waterfalls, the best known of them being
Skˇgafoss. In case of stark winds, the water of minor
falls is even sometimes blown up the mountain.
The area under Eyjafj÷ll where numerous farms stand now along
the black sand coastal strip was in the past under water but
clacial deposits gradually pushed the coastline into the sea.