May, 2011 Archives

46 Fabulous Photos of Endeavour’s Last Ever Spacewalk

May 27th, 2011 Permalink

Today NASA astronauts completed their final spacewalk, the last ever for Endeavour. During the 16-day mission, Endeavour and its crew completed NASA’s part in the construction of the International Space Station. This was the 36th shuttle mission to the ISS and this was the last spacewalkers that Endeavor will ever carry to space. The crew members for space shuttle Endeavour’s STS-134 mission are Commander Mark Kelly, Pilot Gregory H. Johnson and Mission Specialists Michael Fincke, Greg Chamitoff, Andrew Feustel and European Space Agency astronaut Roberto Vittori. Sadly, we cannot count upon NASA’s astronauts to take any more wowza photos for us. This is the 25th and final flight of Endeavour before the shuttle is retired along with the rest of NASA’s orbiter fleet later in 2011. Thank you NASA, Endeavour STS-134 mission astronauts and ISS astronauts for your bravery and amazing photographs. We love these pics! [46 Photos]

27 May 2011 7-hour, 24-minute spacewalk - NASA astronauts Endeavour last spacewalk

May 27th, 2011: the last spacewalk for NASA’s Endeavour astronauts. Here, a fish-eye lens attached to an electronic still camera was used to capture this image of NASA astronaut Michael Fincke (top center) during the mission’s fourth session of extravehicular activity (EVA) as construction and maintenance continued on the International Space Station. Photo #1 by NASA

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Wicked Storm Ripped Through, Ravaging Southern Indiana

May 26th, 2011 Permalink

As darkness fell, southern Indiana was pounded yet again by powerful storms. Tornado sirens were wailing and citizens were advised to take shelter immediately. In Warrick County, school activities were cancelled and most Wednesday night church services were as well as residents battened down the hatches and waited to see what the latest severe storm would bring. I was told that right as 90 to 105 mph wind gusts ripped through, the power went poof! At least 20,000 homes rode out the storm in utter darkness as the wind howled and houses were hammered with blowing debris. Thursday morning, Boonville, Indiana, residents awoke to downed power lines, trees on roofs, trees squashing houses, trees ripped from their roots and overturned. Decks, patios, missing siding, and chunks of roofs, as well as other debris was scattered on lawns, sidewalks and streets. Yet thank God they were fortunate for no one died. Haubstadt, Indiana, had the most damage. Evansville was slammed too. Not much was said about Boonville, but it appears to have been hit pretty darn hard! (Warning: I’m not much of a photographer) but here’s a little tour through Boonville, Indiana, a small town of good-hearted people. [25 Photos]

Help arrives for house with tree squashing it after storms in Boonville Indiana

At this time, the storm has not been called a tornado. It is thought to have been straight-line wind shears, microbursts, gusting from 90 to 105 mph. Here help arrives for a house with a huge tree squashing it after storms hammered Boonville, Indiana. Photo #1 by codepoet

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Hug a Soldier – They are why you are free, America

May 23rd, 2011 Permalink

Memorial Day is a U.S. federal holiday celebrated on the last Monday in May, originally meant to honor soldiers. Americans often visit cemeteries and memorials on that day, while others remember U.S. soliders who fought and died in wars throughout our history. After perusing through some of the Department of Defense pictures, we wanted to remember the soldiers of all military branches who are living and who are putting their lives on the line by serving our country. Thank you! These photos certainly don’t include everyone, but we liked them. They made us proud of our soldiers and of the USA. We love our soldiers and their dedication as well as appreciating the time they are away from their family and loved ones. We want to suggest you should hug a soldier for they are why we are free, America. [26 Photos]

U.S. Naval Academy plebes navigate the low crawl obstacle during Sea Trials, the capstone training exercise for Naval Academy freshmen in Annapolis

U.S. Naval Academy plebes navigate the low crawl obstacle during Sea Trials, the capstone training exercise for Naval Academy freshmen in Annapolis, Md., on May 17, 2011. The plebes navigate physical and mental challenges, ranging from obstacle courses, long-distance group runs, damage control scenarios and water training to challenge them individually and as a team. DoD Photo #1 by Midshipman 3rd Class Dominic Montez, U.S. Navy

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Creepy, Crusty, Crumbling: Illegal Tour of Abandoned Six Flags New Orleans [75 Pics]

May 19th, 2011 Permalink

Like little kids, we all experience a happy rush, a delighted thrill, when going to play at an amusement park. Yet when an amusement park is abandoned and an eerie silence settles over the rusty and crusty decay, the setting seems to twist the atmosphere of enthusiastic excitement into a suffocating blanket of dread. The place takes on creepy vibes and freaks people out. In 2005, Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and ripped the heart of fun and the amusement out of this park. Almost six years later, Six Flags in New Orleans is unnaturally silent, no lines and no laughter. This 140-acre surreal setting has morphed into a nightmarish land of twisted dreams. It seems as if the post-apocalyptic atmosphere might be the perfect place to make a zombie movie. As if lured by a distant echo of scattered screams and the ghost of good times, urban explorers venture out of curiosity and capture the moments and crumbling scenes. They share with us in a virtual urban exploration tour of this creepy abandoned amusement park – Six Flags New Orleans. Most of these photos are very recent, as in taken during 2011, nearly six years after Hurricane Katrina tried to swallow New Orleans and Six Flags. A special thank you to the urban explorers who risked arrest, and possible zombie attack, to go in and shoot these current shots of Six Flags, and then gave us permission to use their copyright photos. This is about twice the size of a normal post here, so we hope you really enjoy this virtual urban exploration tour into the defunct amusement park Six Flags New Orleans. [75 Photos]

Cool Zone - abandoned Six Flags - New Orleans

Eerily silent in the forsaken amusement park, the Cool Zone is creepy; it’s like an ominous omen of what is to come in the forlorn and forgotten abandoned Six Flags in New Orleans. Photo #1 by © lostlosangeles /

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Magnificent Monument Valley – 46 Fantastic Photos – Navajo Nation Part 2

May 15th, 2011 Permalink

Magnificent Monument Valley is one of the most iconic and enduring landmarks of the American “Wild West.” Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park has isolated red mesas, buttes and a sprawling, sandy desert that has been photographed and filmed countless times. Crimson mesas and surreal sandstone towers rise hundreds of feet into the air, some as tall as 1,000 feet. The dramatic natural and rich red hues dominate the entire region that spans the border between Arizona and Utah. Both the beauty and the sheer size of the valley provide majestic scenery that overwhelms the senses as the play of sunlight and shadows holds a person spellbound. Monument Valley is not as much a valley as a wide flat plateau, interrupted by crumbling formations that are the last remnants of the sandstone layers that once covered the entire region. This is part two in an ongoing tribute to the Navajo Nation. (Canyon de Chelly National Monument was part one). We love these pics! [46 Fantastic Photos]

The Navajo name for the valley is Tsé Bii' Ndzisgaii (Valley of the Rocks). Monument Valley Power

The Navajo name for the valley isTsé Bii’ Ndzisgaii (Valley of the Rocks). The photographer called this shot of Monument Valley “Power”. Photo #1 by Wolfgang Staudt

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31 Year Anniversary of Mount St. Helens Eruption (31 Pics)

May 11th, 2011 Permalink

A major disaster happened 31 years ago. On May 18, 1980, at 8:32 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time, a magnitude 5.1 earthquake shook Mount St. Helens. The bulge and surrounding area slid away in a gigantic rockslide and debris avalanche, releasing pressure, and triggering a maassive pumice and ash eruption of the volcano. 1,300 feet (400 meters) of the peak collapsed or blew outwards. As a result, 24 square miles (62 square kilometers) of valley was filled by a debris avalanche, 250 square miles (650 square kilometers) of recreation, timber, and private lands were damaged by a lateral blast, and an estimated 200 million cubic yards (150 million cubic meters) of material was deposited directly by lahars (volcanic mudflows) into the river channels. 61 people were killed or are still missing.
The Mount St. Helens volcano is located in the Cascade Range. It’s a part of the Cascade Volcanic Arc, a segment of the Pacific Ring of Fire that includes over 160 active volcanoes. This volcano is well known for its ash explosions and pyroclastic flows. It’s been 31 years ago since the catastrophic eruption of Mount St. Helens, so here’s a look at that blast – the deadliest and most economically destructive volcanic event in the history of the United States – and five more throughout the years. [31 Photos]

Mt St Helens erupting with spirit lake reflection 05-19-82

Mount St. Helens erupting with Spirit Lake reflection 05-19-82. This was just the beginning. Mount St. Helens and the devastated area is now within the 110,000-acre Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, under jurisdiction of the United States Forest Service. Visitor centers, interpretive areas, and trails are being established as thousands of tourists, students, and scientists visit the monument daily. Mount St. Helens is once again considered to be one of the most beautiful and interesting of the Cascade volcanic peaks. Photo #1 by Lyn Topinka

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Beautiful Borobudur: “Pathway to Enlightenment” in 40 Photos

May 9th, 2011 Permalink

On the island of Java, Indonesia, stands a mountain of a thousand statues which is shrouded in mystery and surrounded by volcanoes. Borobudur, an ancient Buddhist stupa and temple complex, was abandoned for centuries, but no one knows why. In fact, it was forgotten for so long that it was hidden beneath volcanic ash and overgrown by thick jungle for hundreds of years. But now beautiful Borobudur is hugely popular Buddhist monument in central Java. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We love these pics of Borobudur! [40 Photos]

Mt. Merapi erupts from Borobudur horizon

On the island of Java, Indonesia, stands a mountain of a thousand statues. Borobudur is surrounded by volcanoes such as in this photo of Mt. Merapi erupting from the Borobudur horizon. Borobudur shrouded in mystery. In 1814, 200 men set out to search for this legendary mountain near the small village of Boro. For six weeks, they slashed through wickedly thick vegetation and then cleared away tons of volcanic ash. Hidden beneath the debris, they uncovered strange figures carved in stone and they discovered thousands of them! This is beautiful Borobudur. Photo #1 by ctsnow

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Wadi Rum: Spectacular Scenic Desert Valley of Lawrence of Arabia (41 Pics)

May 5th, 2011 Permalink

When people visit Petra – the rose red city half as old as time – they often trek through the stunning desert of Wadi Rum. This spectacularly scenic desert valley in the Kingdom of Jordan is where Lawrence of Arabia was filmed. Other movies shot here were Red Planet and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. Some of the beautiful highlights in Wadi Rum include Red Sand Dunes, the Seven Pillars of Wisdom, and huge mountains. People say the best way to see Wadi Rum is by riding a camel or by way of hiring a four-wheel drive. While there are Lawrence of Arabia historical areas, experiencing nature is the biggest attraction of Wadi Rum. People come to camp under the stars, to ride Arab horses, to hike and for rock-climbing on the massive rock formations. We love these pics! [41 Pictures]

Jordan - Wadi Rum - Seven Pillars of Wisdom

Jordan – Wadi Rum – Seven Pillars of Wisdom. The photographer wrote, “Seven Pillars of Wisdom: A Triumph is the autobiographical account of the experiences of British soldier T. E. Lawrence while serving as a liaison officer with rebel forces during the Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Turks of 1916 to 1918.”
“The title comes from the Book of Proverbs, 9:1: ‘Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars’ (KJV). Prior to the First World War, Lawrence had begun work on a scholarly book about seven great cities of the Middle East, to be titled Seven Pillars of Wisdom. When war broke out, it was still incomplete and Lawrence stated that he ultimately destroyed the manuscript. Later, during the Arab Revolt of 1917–18, Lawrence based his operations in Wadi Rum (now a part of Jordan), and one of the more impressive rock formations in the area was named by Lawrence “The Seven Pillars of Wisdom”. In the end, Lawrence decided to use this evocative title for the memoirs he penned in the aftermath.” Photo #1 by Salim Al-Harthy

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Moon Valley & Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park in Beautiful Brazil (43 Pics)

May 3rd, 2011 Permalink

Chapada dos Veadeiros in Brazil is one of the oldest, most beautifully diverse and unusual tropical ecosystems in South America. The National Park has over 161,891 acres (65,515 hectares) of gorgeous landscape full of exotic flora and fauna, lots of spectacular waterfalls, bizarre rock formations, caves and grottoes. According to NASA, when observed from outer space, the Chapada’s high plateaus are the most luminous point visible on Earth; this bright glowing is caused by the reflection between the sun and the abundance of quartz crystal in the region. On private property close to Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park is an amazing and ancient place much like a water park created by nature with pools, natural water slides and cascades. It’s called Vale da Lua or Valley of the Moon due to the smooth rocks formed by river and ancient lava flows. Still others call it Moon Valley. These rocks are very weird and some consider them to be like lunar rocks, but the place is a treasure. This Moon Valley is not well-known, not even among the people of Brazil. Here are 43 photos of beautiful Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park and the unique Vale da Lua or Moon Valley in the Brazilian Highlands. [43 Photos]

in harmony with nature at Chapada dos Veadeiros

In harmony with nature at beautiful Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park which is full of spectacular swimming holes like this. Photo #1 by Ana_Cotta

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