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Kilauea

4 January 2000

Dribbles and faucets on the Lae`apuki bench

A weak dribble of lava over the sea cliff above the west end of the bench has been fairly persistent for the past two weeks. The lava comes from active surface pahoehoe above the cliff. Most of the lava entering the ocean does not take this route, however. Instead, it flows in shallow tubes over the cliff to the bench below. Once on the bench, the lava can either flow along the surface or, most often, continue in tubes that feed the pahoehoe covering most of the bench surface. During the past two days, the bench pahoehoe has been inflating noticeably as the input from the tubes exceeds the output into the sea. This morning, breakouts from cracks in the surface of the inflating flow were prominent near the front of the bench. Most lava entering the ocean is coming from the inflating flow.

Lava dribbling over sea cliff
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Lava breakout and faucets
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Lava dribbling over sea cliff near west edge of flow. Note the new black sand beach (lower right), and lava falling into the sea along the active front of the flat Lae`apuki bench. January 4, 2000. Shiny breakout pahoehoe, with incandescent cracks, near the front of Lae`apuki bench. The large image, especially, shows the faucetlike spouts of lava into the water. January 4, 2000.

13 January 2000

Lava covers Royal Gardens private access road

Aerial view of lava flow covering road leading to Royal Gardens subdivision
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Early on January 13 pahoehoe flows spread across the private access road leading to the Royal Gardens subdivision. The flow field is slowly expanding in this area as the lava advances toward the ocean (about 1 km beyond photograph toward lower right).
Lava breakout from tube system, central flow
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Lava constantly breaks out from the lava-tube system developing within the flow field to feed many small pahoehoe toes. This site is near the private road shown above.

Smoke flow moves slowly through forest

Smoke rises from burning forest on Pulama Pali, Kilauea Volcano, Hawai`i
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A narrow flow, called the "east arm of the Smoke flow," continues to move slowly down Pulama pali. The flow is moving through a large forested kipuka, and the burning vegetation often generates thick clouds of smoke visible for many kilometers. This view is from near the Royal Gardens private access road (see above).
Aerial view of lava moving through forest on Pulama Pali, Kilauea Volcano, Hawai`i
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This aerial view of the "east arm of the Smoke flow" looks down Pulama pali toward the coastal plain.

Lae`apuki bench still active

Aerial view of Lae`apuki bench, Kilauea Volcano, Hawai`i
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Lava continues to pour into the sea from the Lae`apuki bench but at a lesser rate than in early January. This aerial view of the bench shows only a very weak plume of steam rising from the western edge of the bench. In mid-December, lava spilled into the ocean briefly at Highcastle.

Map of lava flows near ocean, 17 January 2000

Map of lava flows on south coastal part of Kilauea Volcano

Large map. Map shows lava flows (bright yellow) on Pulama pali and coastal plain active since early December. Lava reached the ocean at Highcastle (west of Lae`apuki) on December 13 and at the Lae`apuki bench December 17-18; Highcastle is no longer active. The eastern part of the active flow field reached the Royal Gardens private access road (blue dashed line) on January 13. The Smoke flow is the flow that bends eastward toward the private road. Its east arm is the narrow three-fingered yellow flow. The west flow feeds the Lae`apuki bench.


Eruption-viewing opportunities change constantly, so those readers planning a visit to the volcano should contact Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park for the most current eruption information (tel. 808-985-6000).


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The URL of this page is http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/multimedia/archive/2000/Jan/
Contact: hvowebmaster@usgs.gov
Updated: 6 June 2000 (SRB and DAS)