Armenia: Volcanoes, History and Culture tour impressions May-June 2021

Armenia is a very varied and photogenic country and full of geological wonders. Here are some impressions from parts of the our latest tour to Armenia taken by volcanologist Dr. Tom Pfeiffer who accompanied a small group who "dared" traveling in Corona-times and found that life still goes on if one forgets about it all:
Mighty Ararat volcano seen with the medieval Khor Virap monastery and vineyards in the foreground. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Mighty Ararat volcano seen with the medieval Khor Virap monastery and vineyards in the foreground. (... [info]
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Zhangezur canyon with Novarank monastery in the background. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Zhangezur canyon with Novarank monastery in the background. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Looking north the Gnishik river valley (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Looking north the Gnishik river valley (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Hiking trail to Spitakavor monastery (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Hiking trail to Spitakavor monastery (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Rugged cliffs of Mesozoic sandstones flank the trail (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Rugged cliffs of Mesozoic sandstones flank the trail (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Platy near-vertical rock faces (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Platy near-vertical rock faces (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Steps form in the near vertical cliffs (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Steps form in the near vertical cliffs (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Looking at the rock formations to the left of the trail (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Looking at the rock formations to the left of the trail (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Slumping structures in the hardened sedimentary rock layers (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Slumping structures in the hardened sedimentary rock layers (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Short rest along the trail to Spitakavor (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Short rest along the trail to Spitakavor (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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After passing a narrow gorge, we arrive at a lush green meadow. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
After passing a narrow gorge, we arrive at a lush green meadow. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Spitakavor monastery, our hiking goal, becomes visible in the green valley ahead. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Spitakavor monastery, our hiking goal, becomes visible in the green valley ahead. (Photo: Tom Pfeiff... [info]
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The trail continues along the side of the valley. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The trail continues along the side of the valley. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Purple orchids - baltic fingernail orchids abound in the meadows of Armenia at around 1500-2000 m elevation. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Purple orchids - baltic fingernail orchids abound in the meadows of Armenia at around 1500-2000 m el... [info]
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A day later, we are moving towards Tatev in the SE of the country. Some impressions of the volcanic landscape near Vorotan pass with the 3000+ m high chain of the Transcaucasus mountains in the background to the S. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
A day later, we are moving towards Tatev in the SE of the country. Some impressions of the volcanic ... [info]
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Volcanic cones in the foreground and Transcaucasus in the background. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Volcanic cones in the foreground and Transcaucasus in the background. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Closer view towards the higher peaks still with some snow. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Closer view towards the higher peaks still with some snow. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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After crossing the Tatev gorge on the Wings of Tatev cablecar, and visiting the monastery of Tatev, we cross the canyon on foot. Half way down, we can see the ruins of the Kharants hermitage (Great Hermitage of Syunik or Tatevi Mets Anapat) on the right bank of Vorotan river. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
After crossing the Tatev gorge on the Wings of Tatev cablecar, and visiting the monastery of Tatev, ... [info]
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The majestic Tatev gorge looking towards the east. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The majestic Tatev gorge looking towards the east. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Inside the Great Hermitage of Syunik (Tatevi Mets Anapat) (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Inside the Great Hermitage of Syunik (Tatevi Mets Anapat) (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Old religious stone carvings in the walls of the hermitage. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Old religious stone carvings in the walls of the hermitage. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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View of the interior courtyard (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View of the interior courtyard (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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View down the gorge with the road winding its way along the southern slope. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View down the gorge with the road winding its way along the southern slope. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Near-vertical view of the Great Hermitage of Syunik (Tatevi Mets Anapat) from about half-way down the valley. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Near-vertical view of the Great Hermitage of Syunik (Tatevi Mets Anapat) from about half-way down th... [info]
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Cliffs of old limestone flank the area of Devil's Bridge where the river is covered by naturally grown travertine. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Cliffs of old limestone flank the area of Devil's Bridge where the river is covered by naturally gro... [info]
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Looking west from the lowest part of the trail near Devil's Bridge. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Looking west from the lowest part of the trail near Devil's Bridge. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Vertical cliffs at Devil's Bridge (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Vertical cliffs at Devil's Bridge (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Promontory overlooking Devil's Bridge (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Promontory overlooking Devil's Bridge (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Tatev Gorge seen from our hotel in the evening; view towards the north. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Tatev Gorge seen from our hotel in the evening; view towards the north. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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View towards SW at sunset with a Medieval nearby watchtower over the gorge still in the sun. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View towards SW at sunset with a Medieval nearby watchtower over the gorge still in the sun. (Photo:... [info]
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Spectacular views from the bedroom of our hotel (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Spectacular views from the bedroom of our hotel (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Morning visit to the caves at Devil's Bridge: the Vorotan river goes underground through a cave that can be followed on foot when water is low, with care due to the slippery rocks. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Morning visit to the caves at Devil's Bridge: the Vorotan river goes underground through a cave that... [info]
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Stalactites create organ-pipe like formations hanging from the roof and walls of the cave. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Stalactites create organ-pipe like formations hanging from the roof and walls of the cave. (Photo: T... [info]
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Over thousands of years, warm mineral springs have deposited travertine and other minerals, and built a roof around the river, thus building the cave and natural bridge. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Over thousands of years, warm mineral springs have deposited travertine and other minerals, and buil... [info]
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Colorful warm water ponds (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Colorful warm water ponds (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Gabriela and Nathalie admiring the colorful bizarre formations (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Gabriela and Nathalie admiring the colorful bizarre formations (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Miniature dams and soda lakes (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Miniature dams and soda lakes (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Small terraces have formed separating water ponds (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Small terraces have formed separating water ponds (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Algae and minerals give a myriad of pastel colors to these geothermal mineral springs formations (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Algae and minerals give a myriad of pastel colors to these geothermal mineral springs formations (Ph... [info]
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Columnar jointed lava flow near Sisian in the Syunik Province. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Columnar jointed lava flow near Sisian in the Syunik Province. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Shaki waterfall near Sisian town (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Shaki waterfall near Sisian town (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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The Shaki waterfall was created by erosion of a thick lava layer now forming an 18-meter tall ledge, over which a small Shaki river cascades down. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The Shaki waterfall was created by erosion of a thick lava layer now forming an 18-meter tall ledge,... [info]
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Lizard (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Lizard (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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White and yellow flowers (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
White and yellow flowers (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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White flowers (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
White flowers (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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An impressive volcanic dike (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
An impressive volcanic dike (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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A tuff layer eroded into tower-like structures (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
A tuff layer eroded into tower-like structures (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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After the waterfall, the Shaki river forms a gentle green valley before flowing into 
Vorotan river. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
After the waterfall, the Shaki river forms a gentle green valley before flowing into
Vorotan r... [info]
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The "fairy chimneys" of Sisak - ancient volcanic tuffs or ignimbrite (solidified or semi-solidified rock from fragmented volcanic material deposited during hot avalanches from explosive eruptions) have been shaped by erosion into tower- or chimney-like structures, quite similar to the more well-known chimneys in Cappadocia. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The "fairy chimneys" of Sisak - ancient volcanic tuffs or ignimbrite (solidified or semi-solidified ... [info]
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On the way to Jermuk, numerous spectacular volcanic outcrops sometimes demand our attention for photo stops; here, another great example of columnar-jointed massive lava flows. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
On the way to Jermuk, numerous spectacular volcanic outcrops sometimes demand our attention for phot... [info]
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At a winery in the Arpa river valley (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
At a winery in the Arpa river valley (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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View of the southern flak of the Arpa river valley with ancient dikes and volcanic plugs and flows topping the underlying sedimentary formations. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View of the southern flak of the Arpa river valley with ancient dikes and volcanic plugs and flows t... [info]
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Sunset mood in the Arpa river valley (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Sunset mood in the Arpa river valley (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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The spectacular cliffs of the Yegheghis area, over 300 m tall. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The spectacular cliffs of the Yegheghis area, over 300 m tall. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Spectacular landscapes of the Vardenyats mountains on the way to Selim pass. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Spectacular landscapes of the Vardenyats mountains on the way to Selim pass. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Small table mountain, a product of differential erosion between alternating softer (such as schists, mudstones) and harder formations. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Small table mountain, a product of differential erosion between alternating softer (such as schists,... [info]
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At approx. 2000 m altitude, grass and low bushes cover most areas that are not too steep. Their colors play with orange, brown and gray colors of the sedimentary rocks. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
At approx. 2000 m altitude, grass and low bushes cover most areas that are not too steep. Their colo... [info]
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armenia_k28519.jpg (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
armenia_k28519.jpg (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Beautiful erosion and vegetation patterns (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Beautiful erosion and vegetation patterns (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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We have arrived at the Vardenyats Mountain Pass (also known as the Selim Mountain Pass) at 2410 m elevation, separating Vayots Dzor and Gegharkunik Provinces. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
We have arrived at the Vardenyats Mountain Pass (also known as the Selim Mountain Pass) at 2410 m el... [info]
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Walking towards Orbelian's Caravanserai (also known as Selim Caravanserai), built in 1332 by prince Chesar Orbelian to provide shelter and rest for travelers and their animals as they crossed between the mountainous Vayots Dzor region to the south and Lake Sevan in the north. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Walking towards Orbelian's Caravanserai (also known as Selim Caravanserai), built in 1332 by prince ... [info]
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Looking down from the pass (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Looking down from the pass (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Yellow flowers and green meadows (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Yellow flowers and green meadows (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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View towards the volcanic plateau of the Gegham chain, one of Armenia's volcanic fields still considered potentially active. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View towards the volcanic plateau of the Gegham chain, one of Armenia's volcanic fields still consid... [info]
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The 2700 m tall cone of Armagan volcano, one of the more prominent monogenetic vents of the Gegham volcanic field. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The 2700 m tall cone of Armagan volcano, one of the more prominent monogenetic vents of the Gegham v... [info]
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Vast farmland covers most of the area between the Selim pass and Lake Sevan (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Vast farmland covers most of the area between the Selim pass and Lake Sevan (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Piles of dung cakes in the villages near Lake Sevan - in the absence of wood, this is being used to fire the traditional ovens to bake bread, namely lavash. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Piles of dung cakes in the villages near Lake Sevan - in the absence of wood, this is being used to ... [info]
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Armaghan volcano seen from the NE. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Armaghan volcano seen from the NE. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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The way to Armaghan volcano passes through kilometers of grassland. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The way to Armaghan volcano passes through kilometers of grassland. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Yellow flowers and Armaghan (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Yellow flowers and Armaghan (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Climbing the lower slopes of Armaghan. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Climbing the lower slopes of Armaghan. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Near the rim of the volcano, the view over the Syunik volcanic highlands, another of Armenia's young volcanic fields, to the east is spectacular. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Near the rim of the volcano, the view over the Syunik volcanic highlands, another of Armenia's young... [info]
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View towards the Syunik volcanoes and the meadows in the flat land below. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View towards the Syunik volcanoes and the meadows in the flat land below. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Panorama of the Syunik plateau. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Panorama of the Syunik plateau. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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A small circular lake occupies the crater of Armaghan volcano. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
A small circular lake occupies the crater of Armaghan volcano. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Purple flowers forming small rings on the scoriaceous ground of the cinder cone's rims. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Purple flowers forming small rings on the scoriaceous ground of the cinder cone's rims. (Photo: Tom ... [info]
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Small chapel at the highest point of Armaghan volcano. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Small chapel at the highest point of Armaghan volcano. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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View from the western rim of the crater. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View from the western rim of the crater. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Walking around the crater lake - a small changing room is there for those who like to have a bath up here... (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Walking around the crater lake - a small changing room is there for those who like to have a bath up... [info]
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We meet a group of friendly locals who came here to pick-nick, and offer us to taste their lamb and chacha (local brandy). (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
We meet a group of friendly locals who came here to pick-nick, and offer us to taste their lamb and ... [info]
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View over Lake Sevan to the north (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View over Lake Sevan to the north (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Descending the NE flank of Armaghan volcano (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Descending the NE flank of Armaghan volcano (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Gently rolling landscape of the slopes of Armaghan (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Gently rolling landscape of the slopes of Armaghan (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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On the steep way down the NE flank of Armaghan cone, the others are already far ahead. Lake Sevan is in the background. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
On the steep way down the NE flank of Armaghan cone, the others are already far ahead. Lake Sevan is... [info]
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In recent years, Armenia has invested a lot into its infrastructure, such as modern power lines. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
In recent years, Armenia has invested a lot into its infrastructure, such as modern power lines. (Ph... [info]
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On the way back, we meet a shepherd with its herd of sheep. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
On the way back, we meet a shepherd with its herd of sheep. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Small river gorge cutting through a lava flow layer. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Small river gorge cutting through a lava flow layer. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Noratus cementary, one of the most important historical sites of Armenia. Originating from the 10th century, it has the largest cluster of khachkars (ornamented stele) in Armenia, which display the artistic evolution of various styles throughout the centuries. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Noratus cementary, one of the most important historical sites of Armenia. Originating from the 10th ... [info]
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View of Lake Sevan, the largest fresh-water reservoir in the southern Kaukasus region, from the western shore. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View of Lake Sevan, the largest fresh-water reservoir in the southern Kaukasus region, from the west... [info]
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Sevanavank monastery, one of Armenia's most well-known. It was built in the 9th century monastery on a steep hill forming a narrow peninsula into Lake Sevan. The peninsula is the result of a geologically very young (possibly less than 10,000 years old) lava flow from the Gegham plateau. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Sevanavank monastery, one of Armenia's most well-known. It was built in the 9th century monastery on... [info]
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Inside the main chapel of Sevanavank. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Inside the main chapel of Sevanavank. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Cirrus clouds in the sky above Sevanavank monastery (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Cirrus clouds in the sky above Sevanavank monastery (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Panorama view of Sevanavank monastery and the blue Lake Sevan. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Panorama view of Sevanavank monastery and the blue Lake Sevan. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Ara (Arayi Lerr) mountain is a approx. 2 million year-old stratovolcano in the Kotayk Province near the town of Zoravan NW of Yerevan. It reaches 1900 m altitude and has remnants of an eroded crater at its summit. Image taken during a photo stop from the south, on the way to Aragats. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Ara (Arayi Lerr) mountain is a approx. 2 million year-old stratovolcano in the Kotayk Province near ... [info]
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Slowly climbing the foothills of Aragats volcano, we can see Ararat towards the south on the horizon in approx. 50 km distance. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Slowly climbing the foothills of Aragats volcano, we can see Ararat towards the south on the horizon... [info]
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Platy lavas, probably andesitic in composition, abound at Ararats volcano. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Platy lavas, probably andesitic in composition, abound at Ararats volcano. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Our wonderful and extremely knowledgeable guide Armenie posing at a lava boulder exposing internal flow structures. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Our wonderful and extremely knowledgeable guide Armenie posing at a lava boulder exposing internal f... [info]
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The mighty ruins of Amberd fortress come into view as we hike towards it. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The mighty ruins of Amberd fortress come into view as we hike towards it. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Impressions from the trail towards Amberd (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Impressions from the trail towards Amberd (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Late May and June show an explosion of spring colors in the mountains. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Late May and June show an explosion of spring colors in the mountains. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Red flower visited by many bees (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Red flower visited by many bees (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Our group on its way (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Our group on its way (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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One of the entrances to the castle (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
One of the entrances to the castle (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Amberd fortress was built in the 10th century at 2,300 meters (7,500 ft) altitude on the slopes of Mount Aragats where the two canyons of the Arkashen and Amberd rivers meet and form a natural promontory overlooking a vast sector of the slopes of Aragats volcano. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Amberd fortress was built in the 10th century at 2,300 meters (7,500 ft) altitude on the slopes of M... [info]
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The interior of the fortress shows heavy earthquake damage. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The interior of the fortress shows heavy earthquake damage. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Breached eastern wall of Amberd fortress. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Breached eastern wall of Amberd fortress. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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The Cosmic Ray Research Station at the end of the road up to the summit plateau of Mount Aragats, at 3200 m altitude. The site was constructed in 1943 as a branch of the A.I. Alikhanyan National Science Laboratory in Yerevan. Its purpose was  research into chemical and physical reactions between cosmic rays and the atmosphere, among others. While it hosted a large complex of buildings and laboratories for up to 100 researchers working here at its heyday, it was gradually abandoned after the collapse of the Soviet Union and is now only occasionally being used, but mostly left to the elements as a ghost research station... (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The Cosmic Ray Research Station at the end of the road up to the summit plateau of Mount Aragats, at... [info]
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Ice floating on the artificial lake in the plateau. The southern summit of Aragats in the background. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Ice floating on the artificial lake in the plateau. The southern summit of Aragats in the background... [info]
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Shore of the lake, partially still covered by floating sheets of ice. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Shore of the lake, partially still covered by floating sheets of ice. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Blue alpine gentia flowers at 3400 m altitude. Clusius gentian, gentiana clusii. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Blue alpine gentia flowers at 3400 m altitude. Clusius gentian, gentiana clusii. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffe... [info]
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View from 3400 m on Aragats towards Ararat volcano in the far southern horizon. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View from 3400 m on Aragats towards Ararat volcano in the far southern horizon. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer... [info]
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The southwestern ridge leading to the southern summit of Aragats. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The southwestern ridge leading to the southern summit of Aragats. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Group photo (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Group photo (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Marina photographing flowers (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Marina photographing flowers (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Pretty groups of alpine blue gentia among yellow and white flowers. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Pretty groups of alpine blue gentia among yellow and white flowers. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Blue gentia with the ridge in the background. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Blue gentia with the ridge in the background. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Shifting focus creates a different image: view of the southern summit with blurred flowers in the foreground. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Shifting focus creates a different image: view of the southern summit with blurred flowers in the fo... [info]
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View of the long ridge leading up to the southern summit. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View of the long ridge leading up to the southern summit. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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A large U-shaped valley cuts the southeastern flank of the volcano, likely created by prehistoric landslides or flank failure events during the late life of the volcano. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
A large U-shaped valley cuts the southeastern flank of the volcano, likely created by prehistoric la... [info]
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Meadows with snow patches (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Meadows with snow patches (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Southern summit of Aragats volcano (3,887 m), a popular hike. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Southern summit of Aragats volcano (3,887 m), a popular hike. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Eroded SE flank of the summit area. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Eroded SE flank of the summit area. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Group of blue gentia flowers (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Group of blue gentia flowers (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Looking back south from the southern summit ridge. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Looking back south from the southern summit ridge. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Mt Ararat on a clear afternoon from Ararats volcano (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Mt Ararat on a clear afternoon from Ararats volcano (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Stony ground and Ararat in the background (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Stony ground and Ararat in the background (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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View of Ararat volcano from Yerevan in the evening (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View of Ararat volcano from Yerevan in the evening (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Kasakh gorge - an impressive river valley cutting through a series of thick lava flows from the Armenian flood basalt sequence. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Kasakh gorge - an impressive river valley cutting through a series of thick lava flows from the Arme... [info]
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Hiking trail into the Kasakh gorge. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Hiking trail into the Kasakh gorge. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Volcanic rock faces along the trail (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Volcanic rock faces along the trail (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Thick (10+ m average) sequences of lava flows (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Thick (10+ m average) sequences of lava flows (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Lush vegetation at the river banks at the bottom of the Kasakh gorge (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Lush vegetation at the river banks at the bottom of the Kasakh gorge (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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An occasional layer of tuff or ignimbrite - product from an explosive eruptions (as opposed to effusive eruptions producing lava flows). (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
An occasional layer of tuff or ignimbrite - product from an explosive eruptions (as opposed to effus... [info]
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Flowers at the river bank (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Flowers at the river bank (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Detail of the welded ignimbrite with obsidian flakes (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Detail of the welded ignimbrite with obsidian flakes (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Abandoned cave settlement or monastery at the left river bank inside the Kasakh gorge. The cave houses were using the softer ignimbrite layer we observed on the opposite side of the gorge. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Abandoned cave settlement or monastery at the left river bank inside the Kasakh gorge. The cave hous... [info]
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View from iside the Kasakh gorge towards the north. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
View from iside the Kasakh gorge towards the north. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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The dirt road leading out of the gorge towards Saghmosavank Monastery. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The dirt road leading out of the gorge towards Saghmosavank Monastery. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Small chapel near Saghmosavank Monastery. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Small chapel near Saghmosavank Monastery. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Ara volcano in the background. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Ara volcano in the background. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Soviet-era blue bus KAVE-685 - probably no longer in active use. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Soviet-era blue bus KAVE-685 - probably no longer in active use. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Detail of the bus (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Detail of the bus (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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13th-century Saghmosavank Monastery standing on the edge of the Kasakh river gorge. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
13th-century Saghmosavank Monastery standing on the edge of the Kasakh river gorge. (Photo: Tom Pfei... [info]
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Today, it is being used for a wedding. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Today, it is being used for a wedding. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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The gorge is a popular backdrop for instagram photos of participants of the wedding celebration. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The gorge is a popular backdrop for instagram photos of participants of the wedding celebration. (Ph... [info]
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Such as this beautiful young woman preparing for a photo. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Such as this beautiful young woman preparing for a photo. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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New candidate for a profile picture (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
New candidate for a profile picture (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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While the serious part of the ceremony is taking place inside, most younger people prefer to enjoy the good weather outside. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
While the serious part of the ceremony is taking place inside, most younger people prefer to enjoy t... [info]
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Summer sky above Saghmosavank Monastery. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Summer sky above Saghmosavank Monastery. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
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Sunrise with full moon and Ararat volcano seen from Yerevan (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Sunrise with full moon and Ararat volcano seen from Yerevan (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
(14 Hits)
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