Thursday, February 10, 2011

~ New surface flow reaching the coastal flats ~

Another surge of molten lava has been working downhill near the base of the Pulama Pali. As my last post indicated, lava had all but stopped flowing in the coastal area a few days ago. Likely due to some serious eruptive breakouts high above the pali around the TEB vents and nearby rootless shield range, which may have drawn the coastal lava flow dry, or severed the previous Nov 29th 2010 to February 6th 2011 flow tubes.

The pali and coast plains have numerous breakouts. The most southeasterly flow front – its eastern edge – is presently 3,500 feet due west of the latest location of the Hawaii Civil Defense barricades; the terminus of Highway 130.

The new flow has just burned through the same kipuka that the previous flow went through in early-to-mid December 2010. The lava front is now beyond the patch of forest, as shown in these photos, and is overtopping the last flow, which is still red-hot inside.

As usual, the advancing lava is filling low areas. Some fingers of the front are breaking more easterly onto old lava from the mid-80’ to 1990. This kind of movement could potentially pose a new threat to the Kalapana Gardens homes once again.

All photos were taken this morning, click to view a larger size.

Meanwhile, down along the distant coastline as seen from the flow front mauka, I could see lots of fumes and three separate whispers of steam where the last ocean entry lava recently poured. I believe the steam is likely ocean waves hitting the still hot lava benches, though some left over lava tube dribbles may be finding the sea. Sunrise over Kalapana Gardens
I will post my next update as soon as eruptive conditions on the coastal plain have changed, or if other significant volcano news takes place.

Onsite coastal lava flow information and viewing conditions can be found by phoning Janguard lava viewing security management who are stationed along the access road at the end of Highway 130 from 2:00 PM until 10:00 PM daily: 430-1966

1 comment:

  1. Those lava 'fingers' are amazing! It is fascinating to watch how it cools and runs--doesn't seem to fall into a pattern but keeps surprising us! My last comment from the mainland, the computer is packing up, and headed on the boat. Next Wednesday we'll be closer neighbors.
    Thanks for the pics and updates, as usual Leigh!