2013 will most likely go down to history as the year with the least amount of interesting volcanic eruptions. And with that I mean volcanic eruptions that have good instrumentation and webcam, because we need both to be really interested in them.
Otherwise it has been a rather regular volcanic year. The two stars have undoubtedly been Etna and Sakurajima for these exact reasons. Sakurajima has given us daily, if not hourly eruptions to gawk at like teenagers on their first dance. Etna on the other hand have given us no less than 21 spectacular paroxysms to be enthused by, most of them expertly commented on by Dr Boris Behncke from INGV. We are truly blessed by being able to tap in on his enormous knowledge on one of our favorite volcanoes. If only more professionals where like him.
Even though the year has been short on the type of eruptions we prefer, it has been really interesting from a scientific point. We got no less than two new islands, one in the Jebel al-Zubair group that is un-named to this day, and the second is Nishinoshima. Also Kamchatka really dished out candy for us.
The year ended with a bang, El Hierro got a bit of a stomach ache, Chapparastique erupted unexpectedly, the long heralded eruption of Sinabung started in a truly ominious fashion as it started to extrude a large volcanic dome, and Etna put in an appearance. Following all of that while juggling Christmas was hard work, but we did it anyhow.
Awards for 2013
So, without further a due, The Volcanocafé Award of outstanding dissemination of volcanic knowledge goes to Boris!
The Volcano of the Year Award goes to Etna, there really was no contest in this.
The Award for most written comments during 2013 goes to Islander.
Here I had planned to also write who had wone the Riddle award, but due to the weekend of Double-E (Etna and El Hierro) the crowd got distracted, so I have appended the Riddles once again to this post and we will be giving out the award next time.
Now, time to put on the tinfoil-hat and prognosticate the next year…
The Volcanic Year of 2014
During 2014 the Tinfoilers will go all the way with the lunatic and scientifically impossible idea of Verneshots. Out of the dessert a new Messiah will come upon them and he will declare that the Yellowstone Hotspot will jump to a new location under the adjacent craton. Once it is there it will burst a bubble of gas under the craton and the entire craton will be blasted out into space and the US will be doomed as lava pours out and covers the entire continent, except for some reason, the town of Texarcana. The date the Messiah of Tinfoilers predict this to happen will be the mystical date prognosticated in Linear-A by the early Minoans, known in our timeframe as the 22nd of November. And since nobody has cracked Linear-A he will be given the outmost credibility among his Tinfoiling followers. I also Nostradamise that the Messiah of Tinfoilers will be utterly gone with the money on the 23rd of November, never to be seen again.
In the world of reality we will have a few VEI-3 eruptions, and if we are lucky one of them will be in an uninhabited spot with good instrument coverage and be close to webcams. A likely spot for that to happen would be at Iceland, but we might be surprised on this one.
I also prognosticate that Boris will be having a bit of work explaining Etna in 2014 due to more paroxysms. I say this even though Boris says that the magma that arrived during the summer might be finished. There is after all always room for a bit more magma to arrive there.
Sakurajima is always a safe bet. But, as I put on my own hidden green hat of Nostradamus I prognosticate a volcano that will really take us by surprise. So far this prognostication has never failed. After all, volcanoes are a rather surprising bunch of entities.
Last week Sissel managed to pull away slightly from Evan Chugg and at the same time KarenZ started to eat up the gap to the second spot. We are looking forward to a hard fight for the top 3 positions in todays riddle duell. May the best person win this seasons last riddle-bout!
Image for the riddle.
- Stone castle calling the rod of + Image – Phanom Rung (Matt, 2pt). Home of the Phanom Rung Stone Castle (definitly a stone being dropped there), rung = called, also the site of Buddhist temple, rung = rod.
- Frozen squirt at NCIS (clue, think character in the TV series NCIS, “frozen squirt” is a naughty word pun based on synonyms of the volcano and the mountain range it belongs to) – Glacier Peak (Swinemoor, 1pt) Frozen = Glacier, Squirt = Cascade (Range) and Gibbs was told by the natives about the volcano which relates to the basement boat-building character of the TV-series NCIS named Jethro Gibbs.
- Bert and the pastoralists have a volcano? – Kutum Volcanic Fields or Berti Hills (Arjanemm, 2pt)
- Angelic woman bathing in the sulphur springs – Qualibou, Santa Lucia Island, home of the Sulphur Springs (Sissel, 2 pt. Bonus point to Christian Thordin for Santa Lucia)
- Edible spanish ghosts at Christmas (clue, think of a something that you eat, the ghosts are of the movie type, churching of new mothers) – Candlemas Island (Evan Chugg, 1pt) A movie with spanish pirate ghost was made there, candlemas is 40 days after christmas, and the edible part is from the South Sandwich Islands.
15 Evan Chugg
8 Diana Barnes
7 Shérine France
4 Stephanie Alice Halford
3 Michael Ross
2 Spica´s mate, St. Ananas
1 Bruce Stout
Happy New Year from Volcanocafé!