Saturday, September 4, 2010
Not our usual lava-viewing crowd, the Kanaka Heliki motorcycle club based on Oahu made a surprise visit to the end of Highway 130 in a rush of thundering hogs. This bunch was really a lot of fun and friendly. Coffee Jose’s Ai`open`a van offered them all kamaiina rates, which was a big hit. They even have their own website: Kanaka Hekili M/C Hawaiian Thunder
The USGS/HVO deformation - Deflation/Inflation: electronic tilt monitorsare showing a strong inflation of lava pressures right now.With the help of the Hawaiian Thunder motorcycle guys, one likely result of this increase is a strengthening of lava pouring into the sea as well as a greater possibility of surface breakouts of lava from the tube system anywhere along the miles established molten plumbing lines. There was one small breakout of lava spotted from the viewing area last night reported by security personnel but could not see it when I looked around the area at 9:30PM. What I did see were some tephra explosions erupting from the distant ocean entry, followed by a large decrease in the visible entry plume. This was possibly a collapse of a portion of the unstable lava delta/bench. Reports from today state there is a surface breakout beyond the end of the viewing area, which may be more visible tonight.
A reposting below of the basics that continue to be valid:
Both day and night views of our two drive-in volcanoes continue to put on a continuous display of eruptive activity that draws thousands of visitors from around the world every week.
Coastal lava viewingYes there will be lava sights to be seen from the viewing road even though the eruption intensity has diminished down in that area: fuming/degassing lines down the mountainside, the slim possibility of vegetation fires or lava breakouts near or far, vast areas of shiny new lava fields with fumes wafting from them, and steam rising into the air where lava continues entering the ocean a mile away and will glow red-orange after dark.The county viewing area is located at the terminus of Highway 130 near Kalapana. For direct information on what is being seen from the viewing area each day you can phone the Civil Defense directed JanGuard security staff, stationed right on site, between 2:00 PM and 10:00 PM daily at (808) 430-1966 or the Lava Viewing Hotline: 961-8093
The Halema’uma’u crater has been degassing sulfur dioxide fumes by day and glowing strongly at times after dark from lava deep within the craters pit vent. (Photo courtesy of Merlin Braun) The broiling molten lava moves up and down inside this massive eruptive vent at times, in kind of a pistoning action. Great views of this impressive crater are from the Jaggar Museum balcony within the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, depending on the weather; and the park is open to the public 24 hours a day with a nominal entrance fee by day.
Posted by Leigh at 11:09 AM