Photo of the day

Great Atlantic photo gallery of the moon landing.  I’m a sucker for cool, reflected images.

A close-up view of Buzz Aldrin as he walks on the moon, with a reflected view of the Lunar Module and his photographer, Neil Armstrong, visible in Buzz’s visor.  NASA.

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Photo of the day

Fifty years ago today.  Via Nasa:

The huge, 363-feet tall Apollo 11 (Spacecraft 107/Lunar Module S/Saturn 506) space vehicle is launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, Kennedy Space Center (KSC), at 9:32 a.m. (EDT), July 16, 1969. Onboard the Apollo 11 spacecraft are astronauts Neil A. Armstrong, commander; Michael Collins, command module pilot; and Edwin E. Aldrin Jr., lunar module pilot. Apollo 11 is the United States’ first lunar landing mission.
Photo Credit: NASA

Photo of the day

From Atlantic’s photos of the week:

Flamingos walk on Lake Tuz as the sun sets in Turkey’s Konya province on July 9, 2019. 

Murat Oner Tas / Anadolu Agency / Getty

Photo of the day

Haven’t had one of these in a while.  Damn did I absolutely love this Atlantic gallery of photos of the surf off Sydney, Australia.  So many amazing shots.  I love a good silhouette.

A surfer leaps from a wave at Bronte Beach on May 31, 2019.  Mark Evans / Getty

Photo of the day

This is wild.  Via the Washington Post, “A mysterious explosion left a crater in a German field. It may have been a WWII bomb.”

An aerial view shows a crater on a barley field near Ahlbach, Germany, on June 24. (Boris Roessler/DPA/AFP/Getty Images)

 

From the air, the massive crater resembles a pink virus floating against a pool of green.

But from the ground, the destruction is clear and devastating: A 33-foot wide, 13-foot gouge into the earth that began in the 1940s with an Allied sortie and ended Sunday morning in a massive blast in a barley field in central Germany.

No one was hurt in the blast, the German news site Hessenschau reported.

The explosion was thundering and unexpected, leading some residents in Ahlbach farmland to speculate it was an earthquake.

Explosive experts combed the crater, and no bomb elements were initially found, the nearby city of Limburg said in a statement, prompting the theory that it was the work of an asteroid.

However, a second look, with the help of drones, helped build evidence that has pointed to a likely culprit — a 550-pound dud of a bomb dropped decades ago that remained buried and untouched until its detonation mechanism eroded with time.

Photo of the day

In honor of HBO’s terrific Chernobyl miniseries (watch it when you get the chance!) Atlantic presents a gallery of Chernobyl images from 1986:

The remains of the No. 4 reactor, photographed from the roof of reactor No. 3 

Igor Kostin / Sygma via Getty

Photo of the day

Loved this NYT story about the insanity that has becoming trying to summit Everest amidst overwhelming crowds.  This image is amazing:

A long line of climbers waiting to summit Mount Everest on May 22.CreditProject Possible, via Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

The problem hasn’t been avalanches, blizzards or high winds. Veteran climbers and industry leaders blame having too many people on the mountain, in general, and too many inexperienced climbers, in particular.

Fly-by-night adventure companies are taking up untrained climbers who pose a risk to everyone on the mountain. And the Nepalese government, hungry for every climbing dollar it can get, has issued more permits than Everest can safely handle, some experienced mountaineers say.

Add to that Everest’s inimitable appeal to a growing body of thrill-seekers the world over. And the fact that Nepal, one of Asia’s poorest nations and the site of most Everest climbs, has a long record of shoddy regulations, mismanagement and corruption.

The result is a crowded, unruly scene reminiscent of “Lord of the Flies” — at 29,000 feet. At that altitude, there is no room for error and altruism is put to the test…

According to Sherpas and climbers, some of the deaths this year were caused by people getting held up in the long lines on the last 1,000 feet or so of the climb, unable to get up and down fast enough to replenish their oxygen supply. Others were simply not fit enough to be on the mountain in the first place…

He pressed on. After long, cold days, he inched up a spiny trail to the summit early on Thursday and ran into crowds “aggressively jostling for pictures.”

He was so scared, he said, that he plunked down on the snow to keep from losing his balance and had his guide take a picture of him holding up a small sign that said, “Hi Mom Love You.’’

On the way down, he passed two more dead bodies in their tents.

“I was not prepared to see sick climbers being dragged down the mountain by Sherpas or the surreal experience of finding dead bodies,” he said.

And while I’m at it, I’ll always plug Jon Krakauer’s Into Thin Air, perhaps the most compelling non-fiction book I have ever read.  Trust me– just read it.

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