Just posting to keep my fans informed that I did a short interview about the fact that I like volcanoes over at the Reef Tank, a blog about marine interests and marine science.
My laptop is being repaired, so I’m internet-less at home right now and a bit behind on the reporting. Eruptions and the Volcanism Blog are on top of this, though, so I suggest you read their excellent posts since yesterday afternoon. I’ll offer a brief summary, based on the information available from the AVO so far: The Hut webcam came back online yesterday afternoon and has provided some good pictures of a sixth explosive blast from Redoubt’s summit. A video recap is available here. There continued to be small eruptive blasts after the first five major ones, and an overflight was conducted yesterday afternoon. There are AVO photos here, some of which show that the increased meltwater caused flooding at the margins of the Drift glacier and mudflows on the upper Drift River. Following the sixth explosive eruption there were more mudflows and also pyroclastic flows on the north flank of the volcano.
After months of elevated activity and waiting for a likely eruption, Redoubt has gone to Color Code RED and had four explosions recorded since last night. The Volcanism Blog has reported quite a few of the details during the night. Ashfall from the 50,000 foot plume should start this morning in affected towns (not expected to include Anchorage). The AVO doesn’t have photos of the eruption up yet, I assume because it’s dark, but there are some great seismics, and there is a good map of the plume on Weather Underground. Ash advisories for locals can be found at NOAA. The eruption appears to be ongoing with continuing strong tremors.
ETA: RSO, the closest seismometer to the summit, stopped transmitting at 4:15am local time. Exciting!
The Volcanism Blog is reporting on the eruption occurring at Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai, complete with pictures and a link to a great BBC video. As described in the first link, this is pyroclastic activity interacting with seawater. It is spectacular!!
Well, after all that, apparently Redoubt is not quite done.
Summary: Mt. Redoubt showed an increase in activity (new fumarolic and generally increased gas emissions, elevated seismicity) a few months ago, and kept it up for a while with no actual eruption. The activity suggested magma was on the move, so it was monitored closely. The media got very excited. The volcano stayed in something of a “holding pattern” for a few more weeks, and then last week it calmed back down – although the new degassing continued, the seismicity decreased.
But it was just tricking us, or maybe it liked the attention. Yesterday it had new tremors:
…and put out a 15,000′ steam plume:
…with no ash ash that may be old, so technically not necessarily an eruption. The internet is suggesting a phreatic blast, which would make sense. But eruption or not, it’s a large burst in activity nonetheless, bumping it back up to aviation code Orange and alert level Watch. More details at Eruptions and the Volcanism Blog.