Atypical adventures – pt. 6: VIP volcanoes, cockpit cruising, and an airborne anomaly.

Sea-based, then (low-land) land-based extraordinary experiences – done.

Next up – time to go higher…

First – proviso: I’m no serious mountaineer into tricky climbs requiring special equipment and training. I take my mountains volcanoes seriously, of course, but I’m always one to take the paths up an incline (if there are any paths), preferring to take a meditative-contemplative approach to volcano climbing/trekking…

I’ve scaled some of the more famous volcanoes around the world, but most of them – like Kilimanjaro – have almost become mainstream these days. So let me tell you about some of the more exclusive/exotic ones I’ve either climbed – or just visited and beheld (entranced!)…

First up – Krenitsyn volcano on the Kuril island of Onekotan, which I mentioned in the first post in this series ->

This volcano is an island within an island – a 900-meter cone rising up out of a lake. Truly unique; truly OMG! ->

I’ve written plenty about this astonishing hydro-technical construction before, so I won’t duplicate here.

To scale this volcano, first you need to drag a dinghy there, then get it down 150 meters of sheer cliff to the lake, cross the lake in it, then start the climb up the inner cone. Then all that needs repeating in reverse order. And we did just that last summer.

In places the volcano’s surface was covered in loose rock: pretty treacherous ->

Up top, alas, we could see practically nothing – besides fog ( ->

One day, I want to do the full Ushishir caldera walk. We’ve tried in the past, but never pulled it off. One day!…

“Walking around – full circle – the upper ridges of volcanic craters and calderas is a splendid idea. Unique views in all directions, aka – beauty-360˚!” Thus spake I; thus recommend I…

Next up = higher ups – up in the skies!…

One such unusual airborne experience I had was in a plane’s cockpit, sat behind the pilot (in the flight attendant’s seat) up above Greenland ->

Amazing views out the windows:

The views were so amazing – even the pilot took a pic! ->

Though I did read some brochures, I never plumped for purchasing a jet myself. However, we do rent them occasionally – and some come with the most unusual of paint jobs! ->

Inside – same theme:

A few times it was me in the driving flying seat; for example, up above the vast beautiful expanses of Kimberley in Australia ->

And for part of the way on a jet from Moscow to Windhoek (Namibia) ->

During that flight we got caught up in an air pocket; the results were… interesting ). It was my first ever such experience of really bad turbulence, and I hope it’s my last. Mercifully no one was hurt…

Like I say, I’ve no personal (or corporate) jet. However, a helicopter’s a whole different matter! ->

It’s now flying tourists around Kamchatka, and a little later I’ll be doing the flying – something like this ).

To be continued!…

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