Cappadocia – Upright volcano of Turkey

Love valley in Goreme, Turkey.

These somewhat interesting ‘mushroom’, like landforms are part of the volcanic landscape of Cappadocia, the ‘Land of Beautiful Horses’. Cappadocia lies in south eastern central Turkey, some 275 km south-east of Ankara.

This article should serve as an introduction to what is an exceedingly complex volcanic province and only ‘scratches the surface’ of what is in the locale.

The volcanism in the area and in southern Turkey in general, is associated with the Alpine front orogenic belt with the Afro-Arabian plate moving northwards and being subducted below, the Anatolian sub-plate of the main Euro-Asian plate; the Taurus mountains being the Alpine equivalent. The volcanism, which here began in the Miocene period about 18m years ago and as with most subduction zones, is predominantly of the calc-alkaline type, with arcuate volcanic features. In Cappadocia, the main volcanoes (out of 19 major and many other satellite monogenetic and maar vents) are Erciyes Dag (3916m), Hasan Dag (3253), Melendiz (2963m), Kegiboydoran and Develi; the former 2, being most recent, have had the most obvious effects on the landscape of the area.

The simplified structural/geological maps of the area, below, indicates the volcanism is related in part to major tectonic lateral displacement or (strike-slip) faults interacting with a second east-west structural trend, being that of the Pontides/Taurus orogenic belts and further with a lithospheric thinning. This thinning and the extensional strike-slip faulting is assumed to be a result of plate post-collisional rebound. Also of note is the SW-NE trending Ecemish fault having the both the same trend and displacement direction as the East Anatolian fault; the latter forming an active transform fault boundary between the Anatolian and Arabian plates.The tectonics are further complicated by the distant rifting associated with the Dead Sea fault involving the separation of the Arabian- from the African plates.

maps from

There is a general range of rock types, the majority of the ignimbrites are of rhyolitic to rhyodacitic composition, mixed with basaltic lavas and ash deposits and show a general progression from the older rhyodacite ignimbrites through basaltic andesites to younger pyroxene-hornblende basalt and finally more recent olivine basaltic magmas. In some areas there are thin interbedded limestone horizons.

There are at least 9 major Miocene/Pliocene ignimbrite horizons, covering over 40,000sq km and a volume in excess of 1000cu km; for example, the Inescu ignimbrite, dated at c2.8m years covers 7,750sq km and has an estimated volume of 38cu km. and is associated with the Erciyes/Kocdag complex and along with the Valibaba Tepe ignimbrite, are the most widespread.

The whole volcanic area is superimposed on a crystalline basement of granodiorite, which contains spilitic/ophiolitic inclusions, c/f  the Troodos Complex of Cyprus.

Erciyes Dag; from

As can be seen, Erciyes Dag is heavily eroded; the present cone has been developing in the multiple collapse caldera of the Kocdag complex in two phases for about 0.9m years. The Kocdag complex was the first stage of the development of Erciyes Dag, with basalt and andesite lavas emitted from cinder cones; to be followed by the caldera collapse – 14x18km – associated with massive eruption of 110cu km (including 63cu km of tephra) of pyroclastics in two phases, with plinian fall deposits found 50km from the vent. The second phase involves emplacement of several pyroclastic flow deposits, culminating with the major Valibaba Tepe ignimbrite (2.8m years) with a volume of some 40cu km. Later eruptions vented andesite flows, dacite dome production and basic andesite flows, but limited to the immediate vicinity. The last dated eruption was a dacite flow c83000years ago, but minor eruptions have been noted from satellite cones since.

The Hasan Dag is much less eroded than Erciyes Dagi, the present cone being built in a 4km diameter caldera formed approximately 10000years ago, extruded lavas and pyroclastics covering some 750sq km and a volume of around 350cu km. Continued fumarolic activity indicates the possibility or potential for future activity.

Photograph from wikipedia. Volcano of Hasan Bagi.

The combined products from Erciyes- and Hasan Dag have produced the Cappadocian landscape as indicated in the ‘mushroom’ picture. These structures’ known as ‘fairy chimneys’ are weathering product, where relatively soft, less consolidated airfall ash is capped by resistant welded tuffs or lavas , the ‘cap’ being the latter material that has protected the ash from weathering. A closer inspection of these mushrooms, shows the ‘stem’ to be of fine grained variably stratified ash. Where sufficiently thick, these features have been easily excavated and make for excellent, if different dwellings.


For further reading and with detailed figures and maps that wouldn’t copy (!)


204 thoughts on “Cappadocia – Upright volcano of Turkey

  1. No surprises as to why it’s called the Love Valley. Came across them a few months ago while searching images online, Thanks Alan for providing the background info!

    • I agree, thanks! I knew about the Moon landscape & dwellings inside these structures (it is a popular touristic place), but not that it was all volcanic.

    • Now come on, Renato, you are not a virgin volcanophile (winks).

      @ Alan

      Yet another gold star for you! Lots of new terms to explore there. Will keep me busy for a whileThanks muchly. X

  2. A cacophony of seismic festivity…

    When was the last recorded volcanic activity here?

    I can see from the listed dates that they probably figured prominently in the lives of the transiting hominids of the time.

  3. It appears that the lateral motion along the North Anatolian fault is the result of the Anatolian plate (sub plate?) being squirted off to the west along the south end of the Eurasian plate from the motion if the Arabian plate to the north.

    Is there information that shows the Black Sea basin as being distortion from that same collision? In other words, is the basement of the Black Sea oceanic or continental crust?

      • From Link #2:

        …The deepwater depression, generally considered to be a vast structural downwarp … The centre of the depression consists of a sedimentary and a basaltic crustal layer, with a granite layer thrust between them at the periphery….

        So, some oceanic crust.

        And from Link #1:

        …Geologists consider the Black Sea a back-arc marginal extensional basin, which originated from the northward subduction of the Neo-Tethys along the southern margin of the Eurasian plate under a Cretaceous-Early Tertiary volcanic arc (Letouzey et al., 1977; Dercourt et al., 1986; Zonenshain and Le Pichon, 1986), as a result of the northward movement of the Arabic plate …

        For all, a back-arc basin forms from upwelling magma to the rear of the magmatic arc… or island chain. On occasion it forms an ad-hoc spreading region where the crust thins.

  4. I am still amazed at the wonders of our planet earth and thank you all for posting so many interesting blogs. Its like being a child looking in a toy shop I never knew so many things existed and I am in awe looking at all the photos.

    • From ER: Update 29/03 – 14:00 UTC
      ” -The big boat Hesperides left La Restinga at around 11:45 UTC, making it one of the shortest and quickest bathymetry measurement sessions of all.”
      (read link abowe)
      No wonder, if ship that size had stayed longer, it would have stranded…
      “Bob” 1 – “Kabildo Armas” 0

        • Don’t know but it was a well equipped research vessel, according to Earthquake Report.

          Hopefully, they will publish a report. Still waiting for the report from the last bathymetry.

      • Nah, they just checked the best spot to put Armas new Cabilde house ontop of.
        He is affectionatly calling it the “Brown House”.

    • Ah well Bobbi, there we have the answer to the Cabildo´s thinking, over a million people watching the webcams at La Restringa from goodness knows how many countries, so take the cams down and maybe 0.000001% of those who have been watching will “ven a verlo” (come and see it)…maths is not my forte, but if the Cabildo think they could provide accommodation for that many visitors, they must be crazy…anyway the occupation levels are up in 2012 against 2011 so doesn´that tell them something! It seems clear that the spanish market is their main one (with just a few Germans thrown in)….but now there are millions of non-Spanish potential tourists that now know that El Hierro exists, so the webcams and Bob have been the best advertisement El Hierro could ever have dreamed sad that the don´t see the bigger picturexx

      • Yes, it is sad. There are probably thousands of people like me who would love to visit El Hierro after seeing it’s awesome beauty made up of mostly volcanic activities. But, alas, it is just not a trip I can afford at this time. I just bought a house last fall and I need to get my back yard fenced and some landscaping done. I haven’t even bought a lawn mower yet! Hope to tomorrow, else the neighbors will be complaining about my “jungle”. There is always the hope that I could win the Mega Game lottery Friday night. $540,000,000 USD. That’s right – 540 million bucks. I could probably buy the whole island for that!

      • They should start writing for Hollywood – could end up with one more season of desperate housewives; the original writers ran out of ideas…
        What comes out of the cabildo often gives me this impression of “fiction” a but as I think Alan (or was it the Henmaster…) said, reality can be stranger than fiction…
        I’m still “scotched” by the basic fact that they actually try to hide volcanic activity. What’s next in the human brilliance? San Francisco will never have a quake again. All volcanoes of the world have fallen asleep. The economy PIGS will recover within 5 years. Lithium batteries are no recycling problem. The next president will change it all – yes, we can…
        Welcome lizard emperors, we are ready to learn from your wisdom. Don’t wait until December to share your light. Please.
        The guy in sandals should really consider coming down again for a visit too. I mean, where are the interstellar powers and their descendents when you need them? We don’t all have the money to buy a hybrid SUV to save the world…
        Sorry. The cabildo heroes just are too much of an inspiration.

        • We should though remember that it is an Island of about 8000 residents. So, probably Perfidio was the only one who wanted to run for election. Wait a minute, he was never elected. He was the only one left after the elected one was kicked out due to some unsavoury activity.
          I guess they just appointed the closest idiot or something…

          I will never to the day I get re-animated as a computer game forget Perfidio Armas proclaiming the diving photographic competition that he was going to hold at the location of Bob 5 days after the eruption started.

          • Being a small community is not a sufficient excuse for being completely intellectually challenged… 🙂
            (as big as my country and our municipal territory and population of approx. 1080 souls are, I had to say this)
            Yes, the photo contest was a great idea. Indeed.

          • Actually I read that in Diario El Hierro without any Giggle (hidden secret, I read spanish)
            The story was that he had postponed the competition for a few days, but now he was going to hold it, and he would be the judge of the images.

  5. The Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys (DGGS) has published a book about the 2009 Redoubt eruption. You can purchase it for $5 (USD) or you can download it for free (pdf format) I scanned it quickly and it looks like a really good read, complete with charts and pictures.

  6. Oh hold on a moment, I have just realised, what is going on….was it not the Bristish Ambassador to Tenerife who said what the Brit´s don´t know won´t worry them….there is the answer as crystal clear as it can be,,, El Hierro wan´t a slice of the UK tourism, if they don´t tell the Brits there is an active volcano on El Hierro, then the Brits will go there, so long as there is plenty of booze and fags – maybe the Cabildo should just invest in making sure that there is a McDonalds burger bar for the Brits to call into on their way home from the bar…and as we say in UK, “Bob´s your uncle”..sorted!!

      • Eehhh Diana, Lassie, just after I posted a reply, I did think I should have mentioned “ye ole fish and chip shop”, but I then thought, no, the English abroad might like to be sophisticated and what to eat the” foreign muck”, hence “McDonalds” or maybe I should have mentioned a nice Curry House…read somewhere that British people now consider Curry as a typical British dish!! (Look back at your own comment….fish¨n¨chips with curry sauce)!!! LOL xx

        • Hi there Ursh….. I think sometimes,no language needs translating, but although I think I get your meaning, I would love to know exactly what “yak” means….and what language it is xxx it sounds like the sort of word that might be useful to store in my memory bank xx

          • English/Australian slang, my vocabulary has been enriched with having kids plus I had a good education and always have read a lot

    • I don’t know, but from the way to work through the attitude of many colleagues and people on the phone to my dog and the comments here, I “sense” some kind of strange energy today. 2012. It’s 2012…

      • Helloo Mr GeoLoco, sorry you have lost me….who was phoning your dog…I don´t think you should worry too much ..does your Dog actually know what year we are in.. remember for every one of our human years, he has seven……….so your Dog is actually now in the year 2015 I think!!!:)

          • Politeness among dogs.
            Definitely 2012… 🙂

            Ursh, sure it’s worth watching them. They have sharp senses. I see more when I’m outdoors with my dog than when I’m alone. Her nose and ears are pure madness.

          • I have my little black shit called Marvin, he is a Great Dane x Bull Mastiff x Labrador and I breed Bichon Frise, have cats, chicken and gold fish. I used to have budgies but moving to the Blue Mountains many years ago I enjoyed the birds being free coming for feeds etc.a plus some resident wild life, lot more, I made a deal with a Magpie I fed her on top of the water tank and she left my chickens alone, the chicken went in a jacaranda Tree of a night and deserted their chook house, the kids used to love it, made the bus driver stop on their way home. When my own kids where young I used to have more of a menagerie, that is life

  7. Comments from

    The ship has made several lines of prospecting in a grid of work located at the coordinates: 27 ° 40´N / / 30´N 27 ° of latitude and 18 ° 05´W / / seventeenth 55´W of length to determine the point of greater height of the volcanic edifice and check possible variations from the last bathymetric.

  8. Hi Alan C (alias Mr Henmaster)..thank you for the really interesting post.after I read it and saw the beautiful photos, l felt a littleashamed about how little I know….you inspire me to go travelling and see a bit more of the world, and have given me a whole new perspective and insight as to what forms these beautiful landscapes..thanks so much.

      • Oh Karen,do you mean that the phallic symbols (or mushrooms as Alan C so politely calls them) are actually called “Fairy” chimneys,,,,,,glad I am not single… as these days all the best looking, well endowed men seem to be “fairys” .. absolutely no offence mean´t to anyone here that is or is not gay xx

  9. Great post Alan, but it did immediately make me think of this:
    img src=”

  10. Off to bed now. I have used my quota of these 😳 for the day. Shleep well all.

    See you in the bar tomorrow night.

    • goodnight Karen, I too am off to bed now….was going to watch someTV tonight, but trouble is I get so interested in what is going on a Volcanocafe, I never get time to watch TV anymore… but hey hoe…that has got to be a good thing. learning serious stuff and having a laugh at the same time beats TV big time(especially if you are watching Spanish TV)

  11. @DebbieZ
    I don’t know what you had for breakfast this morning, but I want some! You are really on a roll with your humorous comments. You’ve had me ROFL :D:

    • Hi Bobbi – i think that is the nicest comment anyone has ever given me, so thanks very much…problem with me is that I have absolutely no volcanic knowedge, and cannot compete with these professional “amateurs”..when I see that there really is no important volcano “stuff” going on,and just people having a general chit chat, I feel OK to post a comment or two,,,but when I see everyone getting serious over an episode of volcanic activity, where I know I can make abslutely no contribution, I just keep quiet.. I am a fun loving person, and am really enjoying this experience, I have never ever blooged anywhere else, but I feel that VC make it very comfortable for “outsiders” to come in…if you know what I mean

      • I DO know what you mean. Prior to what I’ve been able to learn at VC, what I knew about volcanoes was that if it was belching smoke and/or spitting fire, it probably was either a volcano or a very big dragon. A lot of what is talked about here is way over my head, but little bits sink in occasionally. Like Bob, I am building very slowly. 🙂

  12. Quería enviar un poco de lectura por la mañana para mi hombre dulce ….. but being “keyboard” challenged I could not find any translation into English of Brodsky’s poem “Cappadocia”…. 😀

    • Keyboard challenged?
      I have heard you keyboard scream at people, so I would say you anything but Keyboard challenged 😉

    • you can buy it on amazon – but I couldn’t find and online transcription.
      It appears to be in the book called ‘So Forth’

  13. What a great post and beautiful photos. Left me really wanting to visit Turkey. Not entirely out of the question given that the UK/Spanish company I work for is doing a lot of railway signalling work for the new high speed lines and a couple of new metro lines in Turkey.

    • I should add that I wanted to go to El Hierro as well, but I forgot it exists since they turned off the webcams. 😛

        • I’ve actually been around on here for a while now (also Jon’s blog, Erik’s blog). Don’t tend to post much, mainly because I’m in Australia and not much of anything volcanic goes on here. I can dream about a nice tourist eruption in the monogenetic field of South West Victoria & South Eastern South Australia (last eruption around 6000 years ago at Mt Gambier), or in the volcanic provinces of Far North Queensland, last eruption around 12K years ago. But right now, things are very very quiet in Australia.

          • Go and visit your cuzzies across the Tasman, mate! We’ve got more volcanoes than we can handle! Mind you, Australia is meant to have a bit of a hot spot that caused that volcanism you talked of. There’s a section on it in Lockwood and Hazlett.

          • things might be quiet ? but if you have a look at the landscapes there is plenty to see and study, remember Australia only has been ‘civilised’ for just over 200 years, which is nothing compared to other parts of the globe, a bit more research into volcanism might be necessary, I am aware of the available reading on it

          • I have relatives a Ngontaha near Rotorua, and plan to visit NZ later this year and go to the usual North Island suspects.

            As far as Oz volcanism goes, the one that really catches my imagination is Toomba, west of Townsville. About 13,000 years ago it put out a 120km long flow that reached a long way down the Burdekin valley toward Ayr/Home Hill area. That have been some very fluid lava. Alas the Far North QLD volcanics seem to have a very long interval betwen eruptions, so I very much doubt I’ll see anything in my life time.

            I grew up in Toowoomba, South East QLD. Lots of volcanic landscape in the area, but again nothing recent.

          • Cool, I have fond memories of Toowoomba. Played hockey there on a school trip back in the 70’s and I also have family near Ngongataha! Small world. That sounds like a pretty amazing lava flow. Will research that one.

  14. <<<<<< Joins Debbie and Bobbi in the beginners corner

    I'm the same. I know a bit…then Carl et al ( Has anyone ever met Al ? He's popular bloke.) starts with the Maths and Physics and I sink rapidly out of my depth! As for all those different stoneyites, I am sure some have been renamed, re classified or only discovered in the last 50 years.
    Talking of …ites
    I have been using vermiculite today… I use it to cover over seeds. It's better than covering seeds with compost, it holds water and is lighter. seedlings less likely to get wilt.
    Interesting stuff! Originally volcanic.

    Click to access 10-1-61.pdf

    Perlite is also useful for cuttings and making special composts.

    What would we do without the products from all the Bobs and Heklas of the world?

    • Lie on Maffic beaches.

      Sand is silica… silica is the last thing to solidify and the more you have the more sticky the magma. Loose the eroded Rhyolite and Trachyte deposits (or their pluton equivalents) and you have no silica, and no sand.. as we know it.

      Therefore, no beach bunnies. A sad world it would be.

      • actually this is quite interesting at the Canaries. Gomera, El Hierro, and La Palma have no beaches worthy of the name, yet Lanzarote and Fuerta Ventura have wonderful golden beaches.. where did that come from?

        • The Creator had some left over when he made the Sahara? (Well! I am in the beginner’s corner and Blonde!!!)

          • Actually it is Saharan sand…
            A few cubic kilometers a year get blown out over the Atlantic, and over the years it sums up. Year 2000 a storm blow a huge wadd of it over to Brazil…

          • The sand in Corralejo Fuerteventura is not actually sand if you put some between your hands you can see its actually crushed corals and shells.

            When Red Mountain errupted (the volcano I posted a photo of) I have been told when it errupted it brought up the sea bed and thats what the sand dunes of Corralejo are crushed shells and corals.

          • All the beaches are natural except for Caleta de Fuste where the beach is man made
            (concrete base with imported sand).

        • I wanted to respond to this last night, and would love to see it addressed more than this short comment, but I think it’s a function of the location of the islands.

          They are on the continental shelf of Africa… at least more so than the other islands. As has been noted, the sand is mostly composed of crushed shells and I imagine some Saharan sand. If the composition more closely resembles a pacific island (atoll) in composition, then it’s a sound idea. (shallower area that supports having shell generating critters closer to the surface).

          But… I don’t have any links, or any supporting evidence.

          • When I was told in 1999 when I came to Fuerte that the natural sand dune beaches in Corraleo were not sand but crushed shells and corals I walked on them and put some through my fingers and yes you could see the sand was not infact sand but tiny crushed shells .

            The Volcano Red mountain is at the very beginning of the natural dunes so could it be true when she errupted she did bring up the sea bed with her . ?

    • Vermiculite was used in a popular attic insulation some years back. The problem is that the insulation usually contained asbestos.

      • yes there was a problem with some mines producing vermicuite that was naturally associated with asbestos. These days it comes from asbestos free deposits.

      • <<<<< Shoves over and makes rom for Hattie. Do make sure those little white things in your compost are not slug or snail eggs!!! How to test? Squeeze the round white thing hard between thumb and forefinger. The mollusc eggs go "POP" and you get slimy goo on your fingers, perlite does not go pop!

  15. @ All

    Re: Earthquake Protection

    Istanbul is situated in a heavily seismic area. It is spectacularly beautiful and is culturally diverse often described as where East meets West. To aid transport requirements and also to protect its beauty and inhabitants from potentially hugely destructive earthquakes The Marmaray Project was born – a deep tunnel to help absorb the shockwaves. Here is a link from The Marmaray Project site:

    And from Wikipedia:

    The making of it gave scientists a shock or two!

    • fascinating. I would have thought tunnels were not a good idea in eartyhquake prone areas. Shows how wrong I can be. Some interesting finds in the excavation for the tunnels…. This from Wkipaedia…..
      “In addition, the excavation has uncovered the oldest evidence of settlement in Istanbul, with artifacts, including amphorae, pottery fragments, shells, pieces of bone, horse skulls, and nine human skulls found in a bag, dating back to 6000 BCE.[4]”

      Why were the 9 heads bagged?

      • Probably the oldest ever serial killer to get caught on criminal forensics.
        Sounds like some dude used to walk around with heads on his hip…

      • @Diana : The 9 heads might have been taken as war trophies. Easy, portable and identifiable way to show the folks back at home that you have defeated your enemies! Or it could be ‘ritual’ – archaeology-speak for ‘we don’t know’! 🙂

      • To this day, the collection of Heads is still a method of keeping score. In the game mod “Head Hunter” for Quake II, your character accumulated heads in a bag attached to your waist. Yo got more heads by scoring kills, and if you killed a high scoring player, you got the head tthat were in his bag also. (also made you a better target). In the sequel of the Predator movie, the “hero” character (Danny Glover) is startled as he gazes upon the wall of the alien ship and sees the wide collection of trophy’s that has been collected… including various skulls. The “Game Hunter” stereotype has trophy heads of his kills in his study.

        And I refer to a common tactic in some of my gaming as head hunting among my fellow gamers. The sole purpose is not to score points or grab a flag or take an objective. It’s to dive into the other sides main area and kill as many people as possible. It’s not a sound tactic, but it is quite fun watching every one scatter and run into each other. .

    • Hmmm! That’s one of the rail projects in Turkey that the company I work for is doing the signalling on. Hopefully I’ll get a chance to go to Turkey, although right now I’m doing CBTC (Communications Based Train Control) for metros in China.

  16. part of todays news – DARING photographer endures melting shoes and toxic gases to capture some ash-tonishing photos of an erupting volcano in Hawaii.

    • How to tell the difference between an Aussie & a Kiwi: hold a match between the two greatest Rugby teams in the world. The grumpy losers afterwards are the Aussies.

      (I’m an Aussie, but have nothing but respect for the mighty All Blacks)

  17. Earthquake -report have posted that the Spanish Army are good in public relations and Ign should take a leaf out of their book.
    Just wonder if someone behind the curtain is keeping an eye on things and ordered the Spanish Army ship to El Hierro to find out what exactly is going on .

    • Would not surprise me if that is exactly what happened.
      In the end the army is responsible for protecting the people. They are in spain seen as the last ditch effort to save lives, and I guess that when they did not get any usefull info they decided to dig it out themselves.

    • The boat was returning from a polar expedition. So suspect the real reason it was used was convenience.

      It would be interesting to know if it got its hull cleaned for “free”.

      • Probably, I guess the acidic warm upwell combined with CO2 would knock off most things. Depending on the time riding ontop of the gushing volcano.

    • Raksha = Ursula? Often thought of writing a novel and having the characters based on the people form time team … … … stone the crows!

    • Now I have missed somthing… Again…

      Time team, are those the britts that go about digging up castles and stuff?

        • Yes, but it’s very watchable (although sometimes it gets a bit on my nerves that it’s all about history/archaeology of “the nation”, as if you know, Romans only ever existed in Britain – no offence to anyone, but if you are making a popular historical show, in my opinion some wider context would be useful sometimes…).

          • @ Ursula : Agree totally! I think the programme has run it’s course. Mick Aston left it recently as he believed it has stopped being about the archaeology and has become pure entertainment. Most archaeologists dislike it as people then think that’s what archaeology is like. No one knows about the 6 months research before, and 6 months post-excavation work after, the famous “just three days”.

          • I’m sure that Time Team would happily dig up Roman remains outside the UK, is someone was happy to provide the funding and good sites.

          • @ KarenZ: Very countries would be happy for a bunch of foreigners to come and muck up their cultural heritage just for a TV programme! 😀

    • LAKAT says:
      March 30, 2012 at 08:41
      @ henrilerevenant

      I’ve been following the seismographs or many volcanoes in Costa Rica to try to guage what is and is not occuring. Turrialba has its own Webcam so I was able to watch degassing and busy seismograms simultaneously and sometimes they did not seem to be behaving the way I would have expected. I have come to the conclusion that Chouet is right: each volcano has its own signature but there are still some commonalities. Rock breaking is obvious; magma intrusion depends on how free the conduit is and whether there is a cryptodome.

      Far too complex for me but so interesting. Here is a link to OVSICORI UNA for a great bit of science KNOW-how!

      Bernard Chouet ( who accurately predicted when Redoubt was about to erupt) is a great teacher. Please Google him.

      • Cheers! I’d say that every volcano is unique and in order to be able to predict accurately, you’d have to understand that which you cannot see; the crust between the entry of magma into the system tens of kilometers down and the point of last resistance. Since it’s not possible to map this accurately, you’d have to make a whole series of assumptions or educated guesses in order to create such a map, then make a whole new batch of assumptions as to what would most likely occur given a specific set of cirumstances. When it comes to Thera a.k.a. Santorini I really would love a list of all those “popcorn cracks” as Carl call them; time, location XYZ and magnitude, for Lurking to make a 3D map such as the one Soucel made for Lady E.

    • @ Henri, I disagree, I think you need to switch Alan as Phil Harding and Lurking as Stewart Ainsworth (the guy who plots stuff and does 3D models out of geophyics!). But otherwise it’s a cool comparison. 😀 😀

      • Erm…,

        I think you may have confused Stewart with John? The latter is the gephysicist, the former is the one who eyeballs the landscape and infers what must have been there and where. However, Stewart may on occasion resort to a sandbox model which could perhaps be a reason for the confusion.

        @Talla, say hi to Dr Harding for us please & tell him he needs to grow his hair a bit. Mine’s at least 8″ longer and has drawn envious comments from Francis Rossi whenever we have met (Don’t we just luurve the game of name-dropping! 😀 )

    • Sorry, no can do. All I can say is that RUV Katla provides a picture of Katla whereas RUV Hekla shows one of Windows. Another cam that is temperamental is the Mila Eyjafjallajökull one (I use i to visually check water levels in Mulakvisl) which seems not to work before noon if at all.

      • Ahhhhhhh! Islander. I see the Dalek now. I am a happy Bunny! I was feeling so lonely! No Bob. No watching the workmen on the building in La Restinga. No Canarian Sheepy Dalek….then no Great Father of all Sheepy Daleks.
        Life is sweet again.:D

  18. Morning All
    I am currently working on a page for Iceland and Santorini like “Wonder what Bob is up to” ( Which is now hidden in the treasury) a.t.m.. So if you have usefull links or “must read” papers. Please feed your new greedy dragon so i can drag it to the treasury again.

      • Thank You Master Carl. I hope you like the slight changes. And i am open for suggestions on more pages, like maybe an Etna collection or ???
        Dragons love to sleep on a huge pile of treasures and guard them vehemently 😉

        • That explains my lumpy bed… 🙂

          I think an “Italian Job” would be handy, but take all of Italy in one big page. We after all have Camping Flagrant, Vesuvius, Ischia, Montesori and Stromboli that either are erupting, or will erupt sooner or later.

          Personally I avoid Montesori and will not write a volcanic post on it. 🙂

  19. The year before i was in Ozdere About 30 km of Kusadasi and in the hotel we had our first experience with an eq for About 10 seconds our chair moved up and down like we were at a boat. We have visit Efeze its a Nice part of Turkye to visit with orange trees olive an green site of Turkey with nice people. I wish you all a good day!

    • Checked the cam too late to tell. It’s OK now. What colour was the “smoke”? Suspect from the time you posted, you may have caught a cloud effect from sunrise. Katla has some spectacular cloud effects and the Northern lights are amazing.

  20. March 29, 2012 – JAVA, Indonesia – Our expedition leader Doni just returned from a visit to Semeru and reports that on 27 March, he and our group observed frequent explosions every few minutes, with many powerful enough to eject glowing bombs to produce small glowing avalanches down on the southern flank of the volcano. Semeru, the highest volcano on Java, and one of its most active, lies at the southern end of a volcanic massif extending north to the Tengger caldera. Semeru, a favourite mountain trekking destination, has been in almost continuous eruption since 1967. It is known for its regular ash explosions that typically occur at intervals of 10-30 minutes. –Volcano Discovery

  21. Volcano Activity in USA on Friday, 30 March, 2012 at 02:48 (02:48 AM) UTC.

    It’s hard to believe that volcanic activity can come to seem routine, but Mount Cleveland, an active volcano located in Alaska’s Aleutian island chain, is almost becoming just that. On Wednesday, the volcano was again upgraded by the Alaska Volcano Observatory to alert level “Orange,” meaning the volcano is showing “heightened or escalting unrest” and could potentially erupt at any time. It’s become a regular song-and-dance for the volcano, which had been downgraded less than a week before after a series of small explosions earlier in March appeared to settle the steady activity that had been occurring over several weeks. In all, the volcano has been upgraded to “orange” five times in the last year, with a month or two of lessened activity before a sudden spike takes it back up. The most significant eruptive activity to actually occur at the peak in since 2010 was a minor eruption on Dec. 29 of last year, which launched an ash cloud to 15,000 feet but signalled the end of further eruptive activity. The three small explosions detected by remote seismic sensors earlier in March 2012 followed. A lava dome building in the volcano prompted the most recent elevation. There is no real-time monitoring at Cleveland volcano, making updates sporadic and often based on satellite imagery.

  22. By the bye – Etna might bear watching over the next few days. Today there seems to be a lot of degassing and tremor has increased very slightly but steadily. This is similar to the situation a few days before the last paroxysm but not at all an indicator that a paroxysm will neccessarily follow. Next sign to look for is on IR – before the last paroxysm, the mountain warmed up quite a lot over a large area, much more than could be explained by sunlight on rocks devoid of snow cover. At present, there is little or no sign of this.

    • Joke’s pictures from today are good; they show the main vent and what appears to be a large stain. Use the link Bobbi provided.

  23. What’s up with these quakes NNW of Kitsufell? Tectonic?

    30.03.2012 10:52:14 64.812 -17.239 7.5 km 0.6 99.0 3.7 km NNW of Kistufell
    30.03.2012 10:51:10 64.819 -17.257 6.5 km 0.3 99.0 4.8 km NNW of Kistufell
    30.03.2012 10:49:49 64.809 -17.237 5.9 km 1.6 99.0 3.4 km NNW of Kistufell

  24. I have just finished reading “The 2009 Eruption of Redoubt Volcano Alaska” which I downloaded. See my post of March 29 @ 21:13. Besides being a really interesting read, what is amazing to me is the amount of technical equipment and staff that were utilized. Can’t even to begin to get into my head what the cost must have been. Then there is the inter-agency cooperation and AVO’s open sharing of data, webcams and pictures with the world. Gee, now there is a thought!

      • Yes, but it has a catch. Seriously. Looking only at “hau” tremour for the last three days, the timing of blu-line (2-4 Hz) it “spike-chunks” coincide with “daylight working hours”, including lunch brakes and coffe pauses. Last years summer there was road re-construction ongoing near/south of Haukadalur, either that or some other “spring” activity, therefore likely. This is fourth day in row on “hau”, starting about same hours every day from Tuesday and have near indentical signature on all days.
        Othervise I agree with Carl.

        • Islander: and I don’t believe it, but again we have come up with the same suggestion at the same time (see my comment below). 😀

        • I kind of agree, and kind of don’t.
          Because the actual pattern of the wave-form changed, also it changed behaviour into the heartbeat pattern I posted a pic of above. And that change happened directly after the 2.2M quake. Before that it could have been wind, a bananapult, roadworks or whatnots. But after I think not.

    • You know, something like here, which is very regular every day, except Sat and Sun:

      Or am I completely off the mark and has Hekla started to behave in human rhythms? 🙂

      • Usula, yes and no, these “vog” are typical highway to Keflavík & Airport traffic peaks. Same can be seen at “san”, althou new-road constuction there last year is over. However normally “hau” is not supposed having such “traffic” peakes. On other hand the IMO meter hut is close by the road. Saw it last year, looking now if I took a photo. Think I did, if so a copy will hit in VC mailbox. We all indeed suspect Hekla is “set” to go off. Question is if it shows any pre-signals!

  25. Magnitude mb 4.9
    Date time 2012-03-30 11:19:17.0 UTC
    Location 79.90 N ; 0.95 E
    Depth 2 km
    Distances 2358 km NW Stockholm (pop 1,253,309 ; local time 13:19:17.9 2012-03-30)
    1506 km NW Murmansk (pop 319,263 ; local time 15:19:17.9 2012-03-30)
    1241 km NW Tromsø (pop 52,436 ; local time 13:19:17.9 2012-03-30)

  26. I have a show hosted by Francesco da Mosto on in the background, it was on the BBC recently. He’s at the Solfatara crater being shown around by a person whose family home is within spitting distance of the crater – or at least this is what they implied in the show. They’ve been there for about 150 years.

    I guess you would get used to the smell after a while but it does make you wonder what first made them set up home there in the first place.

      • That’s what I was thinking. They’re still there though, well when the show was filmed which I think was 2006.

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