The Weekly Photo Challenge: Close

The theme of this week’s photo challenge is close. You can pick any photo or series of photos that represent close to you. I thought of several good ones I had for this week’s challenge, yet kept returning to my latest spectacular experience with close….

Upon completing my first early morning volcano climb of Volcan Santa Maria in Xela, Guatemala I got an amazing surprise and close encounter with a neighboring volcano Santiaguito erupting.  You can’t get much closer to close than that!

When I first reached the top of the volcano after a few hours of hiking, I was surprised to see the neighboring volcano, Santiaguito, on Santa Maria’s southwest flank. It looked tame. Little did I know it was an active volcano that was about to erupt!

I was completely taken by surprise when I first heard the low rumble. The nearby group of Mayans were chanting melodically in sync with the rumbles and then was the first puff of smoke. It nearly took my breath away.

After the volcano erupted, smoke and clouds filled the once clear skies and I snapped these pictures of how close I was to a live, erupting volcano. Unbelievable!

Should I have been scared or nervous? Not sure, but I was certainly in utter amazement and joy of the true power and magic of nature at its finest. 

To read more entries to this week’s photo challenge, click here.


    • Thanks for your comment! I had no idea there was even an active volcano nearby but apparently it erupts quite regularly. My guide forgot to tell me that so you can only imagine my utter shock and surprise when it erupted right before my eyes!

  1. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge CLOSE | Project 365 Challenge in 2012

    • Hmmm..not sure if you really want to know! I was hiking up a volcano! The erupting volcano was just below Volcan Santa MAria, the one I climbed! Looking back, that is a little crazy isn’t it? BUt apparently it erupts regularly and I just happened to be there at the right time. Wow!

  2. Spectacular with views that makes you feel you are close to the heavens. Beautiful images that is both fun and exciting. What an amazing trip. Thank you for sharing them.

    • Thanks! So glad as always that you enjoyed! Yes true that they are very close to the heavens. Very mystical up there. Nature always has that effect on me. THat is why I love mountains so much. I don’t go to church but being in the high mountains is the closest I’ll ever feel to God.

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    • Yes it was! I still am surprised now that I’m safely at home that I wasn’t the least bit nervous. It really was a shock. I had planned on climbing the neighboring volcano with a guide and he never mentioned that the next door neighbor was active and could very possibly erupt! It was pretty surreal!

  5. how exciting…years ago I climbed to look in to the crater of a recently active volcano and it has never left me…the feeling of standing there looking down

  6. I’d better amend that to “prodigious energy, enthusiasm and person to whom things happen”! That was a definite WOW, Nicole. Even a volcano that erupts regularly is an erupting volcano, and the shot of it bursting through the mud and rocks is so immediate, while its’ atomic plume is a classic. Brava. That’s close.

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