Sunday, February 7, 2010

Pali lava goes from dim to bright ~ Same with Halema’uma’u ~ Inflation holding

(Click on the photo for a larger size)

The 200+ visitors to Hawaii County’s lava viewing area did not see much in the afternoon, just some smoky areas in a line down the pali on the western edge of Royal Gardens to the coastal Plains. As evening came on we could at first see only a few dots of lava in the same area. Then later, after 8:30 PM, a far more distinct line of red-orange molten lava was quit visible. I took the above photo with a 200mm lens at 9:00 PM. The area covered in the image is only a small portion of the entire line of lava running down the pali, and in this shot we can see trees alight with glow as well. Far east of this lava, and high on the pali, we could also see a broad area of red glow reflecting off clouds and also a few bright lava glows on the very edge of the pali; indicating there is a lot of surface lava just out of view: between the pali edge as viewed from sea level and the eruption site 2+ miles further up the mountain beyond view.

USGS/HVO’s Kilauea Status page this morning states about last night view from Jaggar Museum in relationship to the continued inflation:“The increase in activity produced the strongest glow in almost a week within the gas plume visible from the Jaggar Museum Overlook.

That inflation is showing on the deformation graph like this:

A few new earthquakes recorded on USGS/HVO recent earthquakes site last night: And by clicking on the link you can see a few more quakes recorded after this saved image from last night.


Views of both the Halema’uma’u crater glow and the molten lava running down the pali should both be nicely visible after dark; depending on the weather, vog and wind direction – especially true for the Jaggar Museum overlook; conditions change there by the hour sometimes. If you are considering a visit to the Hawaii County viewing area, binoculars make the sights a little better to see.

Speaking of the Hawaii County lava viewing area, located off the end of highway 130 near Kalapana, the county is considering creating a new trail and lava viewing area west of the current trailhead. A half mile west is a large lava mound deposited by last Octobers surface flow and this mound would make for a nice vantage point for visitors. Plans for this new path are in the works and I will let you know when it is open.

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