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3 July 2002

Visual delights along Mother's Day flow

Lava from Mother's Day flow spills into skylight, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i.
Visitors delight in the slowly advancing front of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i.
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Only a 20-minute walk from end of Chain of Craters Road, hundreds of visitors to Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park are witnessing lava cascades, slow-moving pahoehoe toes, and inflating flows. Lava viewing doesn't get much better than this! Left. Lava spills into skylight in old tube along edge of southeast arm of Mother's Day flow. Note solitary lava cascade on Paliuli and gas escaping from skylight along active lava tube above Paliuli. Lava trickled into skylight for several hours in late afternoon. Right. Lava oozes from inflation crack at leading edge of west arm of Mother's Day flow. This flow is at end of trail from Chain of Craters Road established by park to guide visitors to active flow front. During peak visitation, several hundred people gather at the flow front. Note that many people are dressed inappropriately. Shorts and sneakers afford no protection to heat, and shorts don't protect legs from getting scraped during falls onto the glassy flow surface.

7 July 2002

Cool morning on southeast lobe of Mother's Day flow

Southwest arm of southeast lobe of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Southwest arm of southeast lobe of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Views of rapidly advancing southwest arm of southeast lobe of Mother's Day flow on coastal flat seaward of Paliuli. Left image taken at 0545, when incandescent patches on Pulama pali can just be seen (upper right). Right image taken at 0558, of evolved left toe shown in left image. Note how thin the flow is--less than 70 cm. This is temporary, for the flow was inflating as it was advancing and in a few minutes doubled its thickness.
Budding of small toe from southeast lobe of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai`i
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View at 0610 of small bud forming at one tip of southwest arm of active lobe. The bud is perhaps 50 cm wide.
 

Close-up of lava toe forming in Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Close-up of lava toe forming in Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Close-ups of toe as it forms at 0612. Left. Wrinkled skin and small toe just breaking out at lower right. Right. Toe has already developed folded (wrinkled) crust, which spreads apart as toe inflates, allowing incandescence to be visible in troughs of wrinkles. Right view taken few seconds after left. Each image is about 1 m wide.
Wrinkles in skin of moving tongue of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai`i
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Four minutes later, toe has gone through several incarnations, leaving long, slender finger from which another toe breaks out. Note deeply furrowed crust on flow.

Continued evolution of toe of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai`i
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Another two minutes have passed. This view shows further evolution of once-simple toe, well beyond point at which toe has any recognizable definition. Wrinkled crust floats away from breakout point, jamming against rigid rock to left, refolding the wrinkles. Lava emerges from beneath crust to lead the way downhill.

Small breakout along edge of southwest arm of southeast lobe of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Small breakout along edge of southwest arm of southeast lobe of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Breakout from side of southwest arm of southeast lobe of Mother's Day flow at 0622, about 50 m upstream from images above. Note the wrinkled crust on the flow, which is rolling toward observer. Small toe is starting to emerge from under crust near right side of image. Right. Same breakout from different angle at 0624. The crust has deflated as lava below it debouched onto surface. Never fear, though. Such deflation is a minor process on these inflating flows.

12 July 2002

Meanwhile, back at Pu`u `O`o

Aerial view of Pu`u `O`o's crater, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Incandescent vents in Pu`u `O`o's crater, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Looking southwest in the crater of Pu`u` O`o. Most vigorously fuming site is collapsed spatter cone at East Pond Vent. January vent, just above and right of East Pond Vent, fumes weakly. South Wall Complex lies along projection of line between East Pond Vent and January vent. July 7 lava flow is just left of fuming vent near west end of crater. Right. Closer and more nearly vertical view of incandescent cones in South Wall Complex (lower left ) and incandescent vent for dark July 7 flow (right center). Depending on one's definition of a separate hole, there are as many as eight that are incandescent. Can you see them?

14 July 2002

Trickles `n toes on Sunday morning

Part of Mother's Day flow on Pulama pali and Paliuli, Kilauea volcano, Hawai`i
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Noon view looking at western part of Mother's Day flow from coastal flat. The trickles below are coming down Paliuli, the nearest cliff. The new west branch of the flow feeds this area. (Cascades for the past month have been located at and to right of right edge of image.) Shiny areas on Pulama pali above Paliuli show currently active branches of the flow. Predawn incandescence reported daily highlights the three broad branches, the easternmost of which disappears off right side of image.
 

Mother's Day flow on coastal flat below Paliuli, Kilauea volcano, Hawai`i
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Looking west across Mother's Day flow on coastal flat below Paliuli, visible near right edge of image. Note finger-like seaward projections of flow, which is lighter than surrounding 1995 flow. Southeast lobe extends farthest seaward. End of Chain of Craters Road visible near coastline west of flow. In large view, visitor trail from road barely shows. In image, taken on July 12, smoke rises from fire at tip of flow just above Paliuli; this flow, several hours later, fed western cascades that were photographed on July 14.
 

Predawn view of lava trickles down Paliuli in Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Lava descends Paliuli in Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Scenes of lava flowing down Paliuli, fed by west branch of Mother's Day flow. Left. Ghostly smoke rises to left from burning bush at foot of trickle, 0528. Right. Closer scene 8 minutes later, distinguishing the nearly vertical pali from the lava-coated talus fan at its base. Height of pali is 8-10 m.
Flow fed by trickles down Paliuli in Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Flow fed by trickles down Paliuli in Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Trickles and small cascades feed small flow at base of Paliuli taken at about 0542.
Early light on most seaward active part of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai`i
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Early morning light at 0617 shines on most seaward active lobe of Mother's Day flow, 1 km from base of Paliuli

Active toe at seaward margin of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai`i
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At 0613, a toe of lava advances the Mother's Day flow a smidgeon farther south.

Active toe of Mother's Day flow with bits of crust picked up from ground surface, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Lava emerges from inflating front of Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. At 0623, lava picks up small pieces of flaky crust from surface below and inflates them upward. Three such pieces are evident on left toe. The two other toes first inflated but, before photo could be taken, broke through the crust and spilled ahead. On small piece of crust from underlying surface (right tip of middle toe) was first uplifted but now is being pushed ahead and was eventually overridden by the toe. Right. Lava is gushing from "trapdoor" near top of image. Inflation caused the door to open, and the contents of the flow could then pour out. 0624.

16 July 2002

Dawn on the Mother's Day flow

Incandescent spots on Pulama pali in Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Sunrise over Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Southeast branch of Mother's Day flow moves seaward, with incandescent spots and small streams showing broad, complex course of lava down Pulama pali and Paliuli to the coastal flat. 0531. Right. Sunrise over the southeast branch of the flow. This kind of view is commonplace for early risers at Kilauea, but it never gets old. 0535.


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Updated: 21 July 2002 (DAS)