Saturday, February 20, 2010

Inflation spikes back ~ New lava viewing trail is open

The new lava path goes right through this same area that was molten in October.
The road in the photo below is now 20-feet under lava and the new path runs right overtop that.

Deformation D/I graphs registered an inflationary spike early this morning at both Kilauea and Pu`u O`o craters.
This should translate to more visual activity of lava such as a periodically stronger glow after dark inside the Halema’uma’u crater pit vent, and stronger surface lava running down the mountain side and onto the coastal flats as it heads toward the sea; especially after dark. The surface lava has not yet reached the ocean; with renewed pressures it could do so in the next week or two.

This new pali lava will be all the more visible thanks to the newly marked pathway laid out across the lava fields west of the Hawaii County trail head information booths (end of highway 130 near Kalapana/Kaimu). The new path meanders about 1600-feet across uneven raw lava and this takes us out past the tree line that had been obstructing this most recent surface flow. Also, the lava path is still warm in places because it was flowing liquid hot at the end of last October. Photos and descriptions of that surface flow are posted on my blog over several days such as this post.

Best views of of lava are after dark at both the Halema’uma’u in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park (Jaggar Museum balcony overlook) and the surface flow near Hawaii Counties viewing area. Bring flashlights for the new path, vendors may or may not have these available. The county Civil Defense does not provide flashlights.

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