Sunday, June 22, 2014

Icelandic Horseback Riding Day

Had a great weather day. We have had only two really nice sunny days on this trip and this morning was beautiful, crispy cold. The horses were really well trained and rode much smoother than Texas horses. There were several students who had never rode before and they were excited to accomplish this. After lunch back at the hostel, we all went to town to have exploration and shopping time. I cannot believe how fast these two weeks have flown by. This group has been wonderful. They are helpful, kind, curious, and focused on learning photography. I love watching their photography interest grow.

Whale watching

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Viking Village Hike

After a four hour hike everyone was starving and ready for lunch. We finished the days adventure by going to a movie set that Mel Gibson was supposed to star in.  The movie never got shot. The Viking village set provided lots of exploration excitement. 


Sporting their first place trophy glasses, Team Puffin unites for the awards photo. 

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Lunch at Hofn

Stopped for hotdogs ( a national food treasure ) and other sandwiches by the harbor. It is a beautiful day here. Students are out having a photo  scavenger hunt. 

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Camping at the glacier national park

We camped in a beautiful field at the base of the glacier field. The students met in small groups to have a photo lesson before we left to do the Zodiak boat tour of the glacier lagoon. We are traveling in a nice big bus and pulling our food trailor. We have a good cook, Tota that prepares our meals and the students are in groups for helping. 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

The whole group at the waterfalls

Had a busy day traveling.  Saw lots of great and beautiful sites and country. Made it to this lovely cabin in the woods, with internet. So here is your group shot.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Three Blind Mice

Ready for bed. It is almost midnight. Time to put sleep mask on go to bed. 

Bike tour of Reykjavik

Had a great bike tour of the city with a very entertaining guide. After the bike tour we went to a suburb to the VIKING FESTIVAL. Got some interesting photos of the Vikings. Our day started with Nat Geo photo expert Gianluca arriving to join us. He is a wonderful addition to our group. We leave in the morning to go camping for several days. I doubt if we will be in wifi for awhile. 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Poopsicle or Popsicle ?

Everyday ends with a pow wow where everyone tells their lows and highs. Then the students give SHOUT OUTS to group members who did something extra. Today's shout outs to Molly for being extra nice and friendly to everyone and Brianna for helping the old man who dropped everything. 

Wednesday, June 11, 2014


Our travel to Iceland was made easy by having such a great group of students to work with. The big excitement was our NAT Geo leader, Erika, was messed up with her flight in the NYC area and did not know if she would make our flight to Iceland. It was close but she made it, her bags continued to fly between Boston and NYC. Rumor has it that her bags are found and headed to Iceland tomorrow. 

Our flight was interesting and uneventful to Reykjavik. Customs was EASY. We arrived at 7am local time and 2 am Houston time. Peter was waiting for us to take us to a great breakfast and then to a geothermal spa called Blue Lagoon.  It was awesome. Go look it up on Internet. 

We got into our hostel and then picked up cameras and walked about one hour towards town, taking photos all along. Had lunch, walked around small downtown and returned to our hostel for orientation meeting where we get to know each other better and set up the group rules. 

A pretty day today. Not sure how sleep will be since it never gets dark, dark. 

Orientation meeting

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Leaving Tuesday, June 10 @ 10 am
Houston to Boston - Boston to Reykjavik

Sunset on the Amazon

Sunset on the Amazon
We had some of the most spectacular sunsets. Our cabanas over looked Piranha Laguna. From our open air lodge you could see the most beautiful close to the day.

National Geographic Ecuador Group

National Geographic Ecuador Group
We gathered with Massimo (front and center) for a group shot before he had to leave us and return to Italy. We are all back in Houston now and have made many wonderful memories.

White water tubing

White water tubing
In freezing cold river water, our group loaded onto two tube rafts for an adventure ride. Lots of gasping for breath as the cold water hit the body, lots of screams as your tube raft headed into the rapids, and lots of smiles from everyone.

Watching and waiting for Hummingbirds

Watching and waiting for Hummingbirds
Biologist, Nicki, names some of the birds that we are trying to photograph.


Day four started with a ride across the canopy in the tarabita.

Bug Hunting Hikes

Bug Hunting Hikes
In the evenings, when it is not pouring down rain, we hunt along the road for nocturnal critters. It is quite entertaining to see the students excitedly looking under leaves and rocks. I would have to say that Callie and Madeleine Ham won the most critters found award for our time in Mindo.

Making Chocolate

Making Chocolate
As one drops the cocoa beans into the press the other pushes down and out come delicious chocolate. We had bananas, kiwis, apples, and pineapple to dip. We even had left overs....wish I knew where that tub of chocolate was.