In photos: The UK's geologic wonders

UK's Geologic Wonders

(Image credit: Copyright Mark Ainsley)

Photos of Scotland's green and rocky landscape and Wales' weathered limestone are just two of the winning entries for this year's "Our Restless Earth" photography competition, held by The Geological Society of London. The contest celebrates the 50th anniversary of plate tectonic theory, which is why the winning photos portray "the dynamic processes which have shaped the UK and Ireland over its tectonic history, from ancient volcanic activity to ice age glaciers," according to the society.

Live Science is including winning photos submitted to the society from the past three years. All of the winning entries will be made into a calendar for the coming year.


(Image credit: Copyright Gina Williams)

Photographer Gina Williams snapped this photo of the White Scar Caves in Yorkshire in Northern England.

The amphitheatre

(Image credit: Copyright Nigel Bell)

This beautiful scene, dubbed "The Amphitheatre" by photographer Nigel Bell, is near the Giant's Causeway in Northern Ireland.


(Image credit: Copyright Timothy Gregory)

The Assynt region of Scotland has greenery as far as the eye can see.

Loch Maree

(Image credit: Copyright Emma Smith)

Photographer Emma Smith snapped this photo from a cliff top overlooking Loch Maree in the Northwest Highlands of Scotland.

Connemara National Park

(Image credit: Copyright Ankit Verma)

Get an eyeful of the vastly different ecosystems of Connemara National Park in Ireland's Galway County.

Laminated sandstones

(Image credit: Copyright Milena Farajewicz)

Photographer Milena Farajewicz took this photo of the laminated sandstones on Gullane beach in Scotland. The term laminated refers to the small layers, or laminae, that can occur in sandstone.

Limestone weathering

(Image credit: Copyright Kevin Privett)

These dramatically sculpted rocks are weathered limestone. Photographer Kevin Privett took the photo of the Gower Peninsula in South Wales, in the United Kingdom.

Lulworth crumple

(Image credit: Copyright Mark Godden)

This delightful rock arch and piles upon piles of rock layers can be seen at Lulworth Cove in Dorset, in southern England. Photographer Mark Godden named the photo "Lulworth Crumple," in reference to the rock's crushed and creased appearance.

Mam Tor

(Image credit: Copyright Wayne Brittle)

The sun illuminates distant peaks in this photo by Wayne Brittle, who walked around the of Mam Tor, or "mother hill," in Derbyshire, England.

Midges and rain

(Image credit: Copyright Mark Ainsley)

This long exposure captured cascades of water in front of a peak in Glencoe, Scotland.

Laura Geggel

Laura is the archaeology and Life's Little Mysteries editor at Live Science. She also reports on general science, including paleontology. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, Scholastic, Popular Science and Spectrum, a site on autism research. She has won multiple awards from the Society of Professional Journalists and the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association for her reporting at a weekly newspaper near Seattle. Laura holds a bachelor's degree in English literature and psychology from Washington University in St. Louis and a master's degree in science writing from NYU.