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ISS054-E-54109
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Spacecraft nadir point: 49.5° N, 13.9° W

Photo center point: 57.1° N, 4.5° W

Nadir to Photo Center: Northeast

Spacecraft Altitude: 214 nautical miles (396km)
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Image Caption: A Clear View of Scottish Highlands

Looking out from a window on the International Space Station, an astronaut captured this rare photograph of the Scottish Highlands. Cloud-covered skies are common for the region and typically prevent landscape photography from space, especially during the winter months (when this image was taken).

The topography of the Scottish Highlands is the result of geological processes spanning billions of years. The snow-capped mountains north of Glen Mor include some of the oldest rocks in Europe, and they were subsequently rearranged by tectonic forces hundreds of millions of years ago. The rocky landscape also shows signs of reshaping by flowing glaciers during the most recent Ice Ages.

Also known as the Great Valley or Great Glen, Glen Mor is a fault zone marked by numerous elongated lakes (or lochs), one of which is the famous Loch Ness. In the early 2000s, locals built a pathway through the area the Great Glen Way -for walkers and cyclists.