Some features of this site are not compatible with your browser. Install Opera Mini to better experience this site.

Earth Matters

August Puzzler

August 29th, 2016 by Pola Lem


Every month on Earth Matters, we offer a puzzling satellite image. The August 2016 puzzler is above. Your challenge is to use the comments section to tell us what part of the world we are looking at, when the image was acquired, what the image shows, and why the scene is interesting.

How to answer. Your answer can be a few words or several paragraphs. (Try to keep it shorter than 200 words). You might simply tell us what part of the world an image shows. Or you can dig deeper and explain what satellite and instrument produced the image, what spectral bands were used to create it, or what is compelling about some obscure speck in the far corner of an image. If you think something is interesting or noteworthy, tell us about it.

The prize. We can’t offer prize money, but, we can promise you credit and glory (well, maybe just credit). Roughly one week after a puzzler image appears on this blog, we will post an annotated and captioned version as our Image of the Day. In a blog post, we’ll acknowledge the person who was first to correctly ID the image. We’ll also recognize people who offer the most interesting tidbits of information about the geological, meteorological, or human processes that have played a role in molding the landscape. Please include your preferred name or alias with your comment. If you work for or attend an institution that you want us to recognize, please mention that as well.

Recent winners. If you’ve won the puzzler in the last few months or work in geospatial imaging, please sit on your hands for at least a day to give others a chance to play.

Releasing Comments. Savvy readers have solved some of our puzzlers after only a few minutes or hours. To give more people a chance to play, we may wait between 24-48 hours before posting the answers we receive in the comment thread.

Good luck!

Editor’s Note: The answer to this puzzler was Clew Bay in Ireland, the Bay of the Partly Drowned Hills. Though we had many readers submit the correct location, a special congratulations to Brendan Conway for being the first to do so on Earth Matters. And congratulations also to Thomas Es Thomas for sharing some interesting details about the image on Facebook.

13 Responses to “August Puzzler”

  1. Brendan Conway says:

    Clew Bay, County Mayo, Ireland
    These are drumlins.

  2. Kevin McNeela says:

    This image is of Clew Bay near Westport Co Mayo Ireland. It’s an image of islands formed by glaciers called drumlins.

  3. Paul kenna says:

    Clew Bay , Ireland.
    One of the nicest parts of the world with the croagh Patrick mountain overlooking the bay.
    A famous pilgrimage place in Ireland

  4. Judy says:

    Blips of green could be land as in an archipelago in the Oceania or bodies of water in Artic or Antartica

  5. Judy says:

    It would be interesting to know satellite imaging frequency, location and image

  6. Iskra says:

    An 8-band LANDSAT image of an archipelago somewhere in Norway.

  7. Sue Nethercott says:

    Cambridge Bay, recently, as the first cruise ship goes through the North West Passage now that it is free of ice.

  8. Peter Lyons says:

    This is a photo of Clew Bay, Co. Mayo, Ireland. The tops of glacier formed drumlins being submerged in the Atlantic Ocean.

  9. Irene Marzolff says:

    These are small islands along the shoreline of a large lake or ocean coast. In the top left, the lighter colour of the water is due to suspended sediments from a river – the river mouth is just visible as a darker line at the very edge of the image. The area is rather flat, well vegetated and obviously under agricultural use (field structures can be seen). There are no larger settlements visible, but some of the lighter dots especially in the lower right might be small villages or farms. This landscape is probably formed by glacial processes. I cannot say where it is but rather where it is not – it does not seem to belong to the fjordlands with skerry islands in the higher latitudes of Northern Europe or America (which are more rocky, with higher relief and woodland or tundra vegetation rather than agriculture). I would place it in the mid-latitudes of the Northern hemisphere, maybe somewhere in the Great Lakes of America or the southern Baltic Sea? The Great Lakes of Africa or the South East Asian coasts are a possibility, too, but seem less likely considering the field shapes.

  10. Ann Mullen says:

    I agree, I think its Clew Bay, Ireland. these drumlins are locations of Murrisk, Aughavale, Kilmeena, Burrishoole, and Killeen Cemeteries.

  11. Paulo Cesar says:

    Apostle Islands National Lakeshore

  12. Lawrence Thomas Jr says:

    As noted this is Clew Bay is in County Mayo, Republic of Ireland. It contains Ireland’s best example of sunken glacial drumlins. This image was acquired May 31, 2016 by NASA’s Terra spacecraft.
    Clew Bay is in County Mayo, Republic of Ireland.
    Mission: Terra
    Spacecraft : Terrra
    Instrument : Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER)