Australia is a continent full of natural wonders, but few people know that it has active volcanoes and glaciers. Because both are not on the Australian mainland, but about 4,000 kilometers away, in Antarctica. More precisely, on Heard Island and MacDonald Islands, which are 1,700 kilometers from Antarctica. The islands are Australian overseas territory, and for this reason, Heard Island has another special feature: Australia’s tallest mountain.
We refer to the active Big Ben volcano, which has a height of 2,754 meters, towers over Mount Kosciuszko on the Australian mainland by 517 meters, according to the news page.ABC News “ mentioned. It formed about a million years ago and now makes up nearly the entire area of Heard Island. The volcano on MacDonald Island, about 40 kilometers away, is also more active, having first erupted in 1992 after “sleeping” for 75,000 years. Since then, the island has nearly doubled in size since the eruptions.
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Seven to ten days travel time
Heard Island and MacDonald Island are a unique natural paradise for millions of wildlife, including penguins, seals and seabirds, thanks to their remoteness – here they can live away from the annoying or even dangerous influences from people who rarely set foot on the islands.
The reason for this is not only the islands’ only location in the middle of the southern Indian Ocean, but also the extremely arduous journey, like that The Islands’ official website Writes. To reach Heard Island, you have to expect seven to ten days to travel, depending on the weather, and “cross some of the most dangerous waters on the planet”.
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The island was named after Captain John Heard, who was first confirmed to see it on November 25, 1853. Both Heard and MacDonald belong to today because of its unique flora and fauna. UNESCO World Heritage. One of the reasons for this is a healthy ecosystem, as life forms have not been introduced from outside. But also because of their volcanic activity, both Heard and McDonald are unique in the world and valued for science.
Islands may only be entered by selected visitors
Heard Island and MacDonald Island are managed by the Australian Antarctic Department, and only scientists are allowed entry. But even researchers come here about every three years. There are no official tour operators, and commercial cruise organizers have yet to include this remote island in their expeditions.
However, the human impact can also be felt on remote islands: the mass of glaciers has decreased dramatically over the past 50 years as a result of the warming of the world’s oceans.
Australia’s tallest mountain appears to keep growing
Australia’s tallest mountain, Big Ben, appears to be doing pretty well, according to “ABC News,” the volcano is supposed to have grown. During the last scientific expedition to Heard Island in 2016, scientists came to the conclusion that its height is now 2,813 meters.
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This can be explained by the fact that the constantly emerging lava cools into rocks, then builds up gradually – Big Ben might be a “bigger” clock if this rock is not regularly formed by ice formation due to the lower temperatures it will erupt again and again.