A 13-year-old girl from the UK will be the youngest ever to dive in the Silfra fissure, in Þingvellir National Park.
The Independent reports that Charlotte Burns has received permission from the Icelandic government to make the dive. While normally the legal age minimum for diving in Silfra is 18, Charlotte became a junior master at diving for the Professional Association of Diving Instructors at the tender age of 12, making her eminently qualified for the undertaking.
“I’m really excited. I started learning about tectonic plates in year seven [aged 11] and since then I’ve been really fascinated by them,” Charlotte told the Independent. “It’s very rare to have two plates that aren’t colliding – being able to dive through that in water and touch two continents at the same time is amazing. And the water is so blue because it’s coming off a fresh glacier.”
The Silfra fissure is the only place in the world where a person can literally dive between two tectonic plates – in this case, between Europe and North America. The water is exceptionally clean and clear, making it very attractive for divers.
“My dad was a Commando and he says that life is about collecting as many experiences as you can,” Charlotte said. “He says life is like an apple orchard and you have a basket and each apple is an experience. And as you collect experiences your basket builds up – and you want to leave with a full basket to remember. And obviously, this will be an amazing experience.”