Sagano Bamboo Forest, Japan
This stunning bamboo forest is located in the Arashiyama district on the west outskirts of Kyoto, Japan. It is one of the most amazing natural sites in the country. An interesting fact about Sagano Bamboo Forest is the sound that the wind makes while it blows through the bamboo. Amazingly enough, this sound has been voted on as one of the “one hundred must-be-preserved sounds of Japan” by the Japanese government. Another interesting fact – the railing on the sides of the road is composed out of old, dry and fallen parts of bamboo.
The Art of the Perfect Wave
These amazing images of waves are the work of two different photographers. The first set is by David Orias. He relies on slow shutter speeds and the perfect light of sunrise or sunset to capture these waves off the coast of California.
The second set is by Pierre Carreau. He shoots waves with a variety of high speed cameras using various macro and wide angle lenses. These waves appear more like glass sculptures than liquid.
Long Term Exposure Photos of Fireworks
Photographer David Johnson captures the International Fireworks Show in Ottawa, Canada using an unusual photographic technique of long term exposure. His photos of fireworks look more like bacteria under a microscope. The results are amazing.
Striped icebergs, Breiðamerkurjökull glacier, Iceland
Photo credit: Eric Harvey Brown
Carving Limestone from a Cliff
These amazing photographs by Canadian Edward Burtynsky show men working on a cliff face cutting into the limestone creating beautiful step-like shapes. This rock quarry must harvest gorgeous limestone given the colors of the rock.
Inca Terns always look distinguished since mature males and females sport mustaches.
Photo credit: Leslie Guinan
The Abandoned Ghost Continent of Antarctica
Antarctic spirits have an abundance of residences to choose from thanks to the huge number of ghost towns, deserted islands and other such haunts. For obvious reasons, Antarctica is a very popular place to abandon.
The most famous and disturbingly well-preserved of these places is the camp built by Robert Scott (pictured above) and his party on Ross Island in 1911. The seaweed-insulated wooden cabin and its outbuildings were supposed to be the team’s shelter when they returned from their attempt to be the first people to visit the South Pole. Scott and four others set out from the base to reach the pole. They reached it in January 1912 only to find that the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen had gotten there weeks before them. All five men died trying to get back to the base camp. The final three – Scott, Wilson and Bowers – were just 11 miles from it when they died.
South Georgia is another Antarctic island that people rushed to abandon. At least seven whaling communities existed there during the first half of the 20th century. When all were up and running, the island was estimated to have 2,000 people living on it. Most of the towns are in the process of returning to a state of wilderness.
It is worth noting that these frozen islands have been the subject of heated arguments over who actually owns them – mostly by the UK and Argentina. South Georgia and the South Shetland islands are still possessed by the UK. The dispute over ownership of South Georgia was a contributing factor in The Falklands War described by Argentine writer Jorge Louis Borges as “two bald men fighting over a comb.”
Rare Lenticular Clouds
The stunning meteorological phenomena of lenticular clouds (Altocumulus lenticularis) is a rare spectacle. Looking more like UFO’s than clouds, they are created by three conditions: warm and moist air, winds with constant height and something big, like a tall mountain. When a current of air hits an obstacle in its way, it begins to travel upwards and starts to condense forming a lens-shaped cloud with multiple layers.
This Year’s Largest Solar Flare
On April 11, 2013, at 3:16 a.m. EDT, the sun emitted an M6.5 flare, allowing NASA to capture this vibrant image. It’s not a particularly powerful solar flare, but it is the strongest of 2013 so far, and we’ll have plenty more opportunities to observe solar activity this year.