From the monasteries to the people to even the cute dogs, geology is not the only thing to see in Bhutan! Photos by Stacy Phillips.  The #MountainsAreCalling and I must go!  As part of her PhD Eleni Wood traveled to #Bhutan to study the nature of some of the highest metamorphic rocks on the planet. This photo taken above the Masang Kang valley, NW Bhutan, Himalaya. Photo: Stacy Phillips. #womeninscience  @schlife descending a snow field on the upper slopes of #MtTaranaki of #NewZealand with #Tongariro and #Ngauruhoe in the background. Getting above the clouds always clears the mind. #keepclimbing  Sunset over #MountTaranaki #NewZealand. The perfect #stratovolcano is due for a major eruption in the next fifty years or so. I would love love love to see it blow its top!  Although my New Zealand trip is over and I have returned to Perth I still have dozens and dozens of photos to be shared. Here is one from #Gollum's pool.  Sedimentary nodules on the Three Sisters Beach near Tongaportu, New Zealand. These concretions can form in a variety of ways and are generally found in mudstones. New Zealand is famous for septarian concretions or septarian nodules, are concretions containing angular cavities that are often filled with calcite or quartz.
 The lush forests above Gasa, Bhutan and the valley and route north to the high settlement of Laya. Photo: Stacy Phillips. Despite the country being the size of Switzerland, Bhutan has the steepest elevation profile from highest to lowest point of any country in the world (so I have been told). This crazy gradient manifests itself in some pretty jaw-droppingly steep terrain, which makes getting around a bit tricky, to say the least. Enjoy bumping along a rocky track for days on end and trekking up steep hills to reach your field site? If so #Bhutan is the country for you. Follow the link in the profile to read more from Eleni Wood.  Nothing quite like the #Himalaya! #Bhutan  Beautiful meanders in northern Queensland. #flyinghome  #StarTrails over #MtTaranaki The best part of #NewZealand is the #freecamping. We stayed in NZ for 9 nights and only paid for one night in a National Park hut. If you are paying for camping then you are paying too much! #freeisbetter  #MtNguaruhoe in #TongariroNationalPark aka #MountDoom from #LOTR  #BlackWaterRafting at #Waitomo #NewZealand. The #WaitomoCaves are unique in that the subterranean river is navigable with small rafts but the most exciting part of this cave system are the 'glow worms'. These 'worms' are really maggots of Arachnocampa fungus gnats. These maggots release sticky strings from the cave ceilings to catch passing insects. When their prey is snagged, the maggots reel in their quarry and feast. Their digestive processes produce #bioluminescence hence the name 'glow worm'. Photos from Blackwater Rafting.
 Heavily retrogressed and with very little evidence of granulite mineralogy, this mafic amphibolite, with large garnets, shows interesting melt-rock relationships with large amphibole porphyroblasts. Photo: Stacy Phillips. Read more about these mafic granulites in a recent article by Eleni Wood. Link in profile.  Eleni enjoying the spectacular views of the Bhutanese #Himalaya. Be sure to read about her adventures in our most recent article. See link in profile.  #DamperFalls near #Taranaki in #NewZealand. Soft mudstone and siltstone allow for dramatic erosion in this tectonically active region. These rocks are less than 20 million years old and were only uplifted recently and soon these escarpments will be eroded back to gently rolling hills.  Volcanic lakes and fumaroles along the #TongoriroCrossing, #New Zealand. There are dozens of active fumaroles in the area that constantly emit water steam and sulphur dioxide. The color of the volcanic lakes is controlled by the minerals associated with these volcanic vents. Although the lakes are cold there are also several springs that bubble with boiling water.  The #Ruapehu volcanic complex in the background with #TheShire in the foreground. #NewZealand #volcano  Climbing up #MountTaranaki in New Zealand at #sunrise. Taranaki is a highly symmetrical #stratovolcano rising 2500 meters above sea level and formed by subduction zone magmatism as the Pacific oceanic crust subduction beneath New Zealand. Taranaki is one of three volcanic edifices in the region that young from west to east. The volcanism that formed the youngest edifice started about 135,000 years ago with the most recent minor activity in the mid 19th century. Research has shown that Mt Taranaki has a major eruption every 500 years. The last major eruption occurred around 1655. Photo by WK@schlife

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