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Flight passengers treated to up close view of Bardarbunga volcano


If you know anyone who flies regularly, you've probably seen more than a couple pictures taken through an airplane window on Facebook or Instagram, but you probably haven't seen anything quite this cool.

Passengers aboard an Icelandair flight were treated to a spectacular view of the Bardarbunga volcano Wednesday morning when the pilot decided to veer off course, according to a tweet sent out by the airline. The airline says the pilot rerouted the plane to circle the volcano specifically to give the fliers a chance to check it out more closely.

Iceland has dozens of volcanoes, according to Volcano Discovery, but the Bardarbunga is the only one currently erupting. Icelandic authorities initially closed the airspace around the volcano when it began spewing lava last month, after earthquakes rocked the volcano. Officials then raised the country's aviation alert to its highest level, indicating a risk of "significant emission of ash into the atmosphere" according to the Associated Press. Icelandic meteorologists said the seismic activity near volcano had dropped and its lava eruption appeared to be less active, the AP reported Tuesday.

The last time an Icelandic volcano made headlines air travelers got far more misery than glee. Back in 2010 Eyafjallajökull became the word all television reporters struggled to pronounce as the Icelanic volcano known by that complicated name started spewing ash at an astounding rate. The ash clogged up popular flight routes so much that more than 100,000 flights were canceled.

The next year the Grimsvotn volcano had a smaller but similar impact on flights when winds blew ash over parts of northern Europe.

Check out other cool pics snapped in the sky.
Air passengers shoot majestic photos of lake ice
Pilot snaps amazing aerial photos of Paris from the cockpit

Icelandic Volcano Alert Level Raised, Starts Erupting

Join the discussion

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dbwfallen September 04 2014 at 5:53 AM

Nice of the pilot and airline to allow this rare opportunity.

Flag Reply +8 rate up
kcarthey September 04 2014 at 7:10 AM

Flying from Honolulu to San Franciso, our pilot took a sharp left turn flying directly north. The sun had just reached halfway down the horizon as it set on the left while the full moon was half way visible on the right ascending. We will never forget it.

Flag Reply +5 rate up
gmsexton September 04 2014 at 10:32 AM

what a cool thing to do... such a rare event and he shared with all....

Flag Reply +5 rate up
Josey September 04 2014 at 3:13 PM

Way to go, Captain!! Nice touch.

Flag Reply +4 rate up
bobby macias September 04 2014 at 7:24 PM

Very cool of the Captain. I can see there are some tight asses on here complaining about the Pilots' actions. Why aren't some people ever happy?

Flag Reply +4 rate up
patriot1too September 04 2014 at 6:21 AM

He devieated from standard procedure.

Flag Reply +2 rate up
12 replies
This Is Me September 04 2014 at 6:11 PM

That was pretty stupid. No mention of whether the pilot had an amended clearance to do that. But the real issue is that volcanic ash shuts down jet engines and damages the surface of the plane, including the windshield. It is irresponsible for a pilot to take passengers who have not provided informed consent.

Flag Reply +2 rate up
3 replies
lnl80388 September 04 2014 at 1:49 PM

I seem to remember a ship captain taking his luxury cruise ship close to the shore so his passengers could get a good view of the shoreline.
If I am not mistaken I think it was just over a month ago when they finally got that ship raised off the bottom of the ocean and the Captain is still facing trial for manslaughter after that failed stunt.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
3 replies
pjsowe September 04 2014 at 8:01 PM

In the old days, if ahead of schedule US Air use to go out of their way to do a few loops around Niagra Falls on the way into Buffalo.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
Jo Lavender September 04 2014 at 8:10 PM

I hope he cleared his decision to make a circle around the volcano with air traffic control.

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1 reply
Randy1953 Jo Lavender September 04 2014 at 11:12 PM

Iceland ? Air traffic control ? Are you serious ?

Flag Reply 0 rate up
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