October 4, 2022

East Valley Times

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An Argentinian’s Dangerous Adventure in Iceland: He Dives in Silfra Crack and Touches Two Continents at Once

Diving in Silfra Crack

Located between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates, at the crossroads of the two continents. silfra error, In Iceland, It is one of the top 10 places in the world to dive. It is characterized by its frozen and crystalline water, which comes from the melting of the Langjökull glacier; And for its incredible view, it helps to reach the depths of this geological wonder.

A man from Mar del Plata arrived at this spot, located in the heart of Thingvellir National Park. Alfredo C. Elena, Obstetrician (58), his wife Gabriela Pujol (56), a marine biologist and professional diver, had to dive into the vents of the faults, through subterranean aqueduct tunnels formed by an earthquake two centuries ago.

One of the unique features of this place is the climate. Icelanders are governed by the Nordic calendar, which includes only two seasons, winter and summer. The latter lasts from April to October (low 10°C and high 14°C) and the latter part of the year is a long, harsh winter in which the sun appears for only three hours a day. That is why, Alfredo and Gabriela chose their trip in August.

Alfredo plunged into the Silfra fault in Iceland and managed to touch two continents at once

“On the day we did the operation, we were lucky to have a sunny day with almost no wind. It was 13 degrees on the surface, the sky was clear, but the temperature in the water dropped to 2 degrees. Alfredo recalled Infobay, who had to don a dry neoprene suit, gloves, goggles and fins for the occasion. Only the hands and part of the face were uncovered.

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“My wife is the one who made me go to these extraordinary places and dive in exotic settings. She’s an expert at convincing me to do these crazy things.” Alfredo joked as he recalled his extensive travel history.

The water temperature in summer is 2 degrees
The water temperature in summer is 2 degrees

“We’ve dived with turtles in the Galapagos Islands, with sharks in Fiji, among coral reefs and sunken World War II warships in New Guinea. We’re going to the Great Blue Hole in Belize, which looks like a cenote opened in the middle of the blue ocean and a portal to another dimension,” said Dr. remembered.

The type of diving practiced at Silfra fault is short, technical and not very deep. It lasts half an hour, is done in a group and in the company of a guide. “This is one of those places that every scientific diver should know about. It is the mecca that everyone wants to access after years of immersion”Coordinates Gabriela, she has been diving since she was 15 and thanks to her training, she can now combine knowledge and pleasure.

The type of diving practiced in the Silfra fault is short, technical and not deep enough to contemplate the rays of the sun in the volcanic caves.
The type of diving practiced in the Silfra fault is short, technical and not deep enough to contemplate the rays of the sun in the volcanic caves.

You can dive to a fault where the North American Plate is on one side and the Eurasian Plate is on the other. Because it is not a complex dive, but rather a very cold one, which requires specific training and the use of adequate equipment,” explained the expert.

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He added: “It’s incredible that you’re diving in an amazing place from a geological point of view and from the history of the Earth, because Iceland comes on the surface of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. It’s a continent of water and perpetual fire, so it has amazing contrasts.

The couple agreed that the Silfra fault is by definition a blue spot. “We dived 15 meters but had infinite visibility. The mercy is that the sunlight does not penetrate too far from the surface to reflect off the walls of the volcanic caves”. They pointed out the orange color of the rocks blending with the blue of the lake. Brown sand and the phosphorescent green of algae, meanwhile, complete the color palette.

Gabriela also took a regular photo at the Crack of Silfra
Gabriela also took a regular photo at the Crack of Silfra

Alfredo’s feat made it clear that you don’t need extensive diving experience to swim at this location., has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There, each underwater space bears witness to millions of years of geological evolution that has yet to be completed. truly, The two continents are moving about two centimeters apart each year.

Alfredo makes it clear that although Gabriela’s career as a marine biologist inspires her to discover the secrets that lie beneath the sea, they both love exploring nature in general.

“We did many photo safaris. We have seen tigers in India and gorillas in countries like Kenya, Tanzania and Zimbabwe. We traveled in a sandbox through the Ica Desert in Peru, famous for its high dunes; We flew over the immensity of the glaciers in Alaska.

The day they dived in Silfra, Alfredo and Gabriela had clear skies and pure sun.
The day they dived in Silfra, Alfredo and Gabriela had clear skies and pure sun.

Thinking about their next adventure, they said a destination where the epidemic had narrowed was still pending. “We’ve got it all planned out in Mozambique diving among whales and giant manta rays and a week before the borders close.”They lamented.

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However, Alfredo took advantage of the strict quarantine to stay in touch with other travelers and take virtual tours on his YouTube channel. Pay Elena Traveler. “I dedicated myself to conducting live interviews with travelers and experts in the field. ‘Let’s travel where we can’t’ But now I have changed my name ‘Airplane Mode’ It comes out once a month”, he said, proud of his project, which is yet to be monetized, and he does it as a hobby.

With the ever-present desire to re-enact new journeys and continue piling up the series, the couple is now planning a new destination: In Ilha Grande, Brazil, Between the 16th and 19th centuries it is the region with the highest density of drownings due to conflicts between European galleons and pirates.

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