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Kilauea

Eruption Update and Image Archive

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5 February 2003

West Highcastle's still going

Glow from West Highcastle lava delta, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i

There may be no easily accessible breakouts these days, but West Highcastle continues to put on beautiful show at night. Viewpoint is on top of old sea cliff 200 m from action. 0621.

8 February 2003

Lava gushes down Pulama pali

Glow from long surface flow, and lava poised atop steepest part of Pulama pali, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Lava starting to rush down steepest part of Pulama pali, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Glow from surface flow on upper part of Pulama pali. In lower right are parts of thick flow on top of steepest part of pali, poised to rush downward. 0557:41. Right. Telephoto image of lava starting to break out from cap on steepest part of pali, same as in lower right of left image. 0602:26.
Lava gushing down steepest part of Pulama pali, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Lava gushing down steepest part of Pulama pali, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Same view as in upper right but 18 seconds later. Note how flow has widened (to estimated 20-25 m width) and extended far down slope. 0602:44. Right. Same view 13 seconds later. Cascade has reached its maximum size. Over at least next 30 minutes, lava continued to flow but narrowed into a 3-5-m-wide channel midway in earlier gush. 0602:57.

9 February 2003

Cascades on Paliuli

Main cascades down Paliuli, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Telephoto of cascades on Paliuli, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Fast-moving cascades on Paliuli, 10-12 m high, directly below active gushing flow of February 8. Lava feeds into crusted flow on flat at base of pali. These cascades have been active for several hours at least. 0606. Right. Telephoto of eastern cascade on Paliuli. What appears to be misfocus is heat scintillation. 0608.
Main cascades joined by another on Paliuli, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Cascades on Paliuli with flow in foreground, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Freely flowing cascades to left, same as shown above, abruptly joined by tumbling blocks at start of new cascade to right. New cascades formed by breakout from flow poised above top of Paliuli. 0609. Right. Surface flow on coastal flat in foreground, with Paliuli cascades behind. 0629.
Furtive photographer leaves Paliuli cascades, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Cascades on Paliuli in dawning light, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Cascade that developed from tumbling blocks in left image above is now freely flowing and continuous. Furtive photographer leaves scene in lower right. 0648. Right. Original cascades continue to show their stuff, though a bit diminished, in dawning light. Compare with first image today. 0651.

12 February 2003

Lincoln's Birthday lava nears road

Lava moving across coastal flat and setting grass and brush on fire, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i

Afternoon view of lava tongue moving across coastal flat within shouting distance of Chain of Craters Road. Grass and brush are no match for lava. 1546.

Lava flowing past tree on coastal flat near Chain of Craters Road, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Early morning scene of lava flow heading toward Chain of Craters Road, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Thin lava flow moves past defoliated `ohi`a tree on coastal flat about 550 m from Chain of Craters Road. 0507. Right. Another `ohi`a  front-lighted by lava flow with pahoehoe crust, near site of left image. 0520.
Lava flowing from under crust, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Lava flowing past tree on coastal flat near Chain of Craters Road, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Quintuplets emerging from crust and merging into one lava stream on which crust quickly develops. Width of stream, about 2 m. 0608. Right. Lava oozing across gently rolling grassland with scrub `ohi`a. 0642.
Lava flowing across flat terrain on coastal flat, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Lava ponding against tumulus, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Toe of lava breaks from margin of flow near Chain of Craters Road. Note small fires set by flow. 0644. Right. Lava blocked by vegetated tumulus (upper left), inflating, and breaking out in small toes. This blockage is only temporary, as lava found its way around tumulus and continued traveling toward Chain of Craters Road. 0647.

13 February 2003

Lava very near road...and then on the road

Smoke lighted by lava 100 m from Chain of Craters Road, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Dawn sky above lava near Chain of Craters Road, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Lava stream flowing against tumulus (site of photographer), burning grass that generates smoke to be lighted by incandescence of lava. Width of view, about 10 m. 0615. Right. Dawn sky overlooks front of flow within 70 m of Chain of Craters Road. 0642.
Road signs beyond flow front, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Laze plume from West Highcastle above flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Flow moving toward road, location of which is indicated by signs in upper center of image. 0650. Right. From near site of left image, showing laze plume from West Highcastle lava delta 1.75 km to east. 0652.
Advancing snout of flow, with smoky Holei Pali in background, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Advancing flow front through grassland and scattered scrub `ohi`a, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Snout of flow nearest road, moving toward observer, with Holei Pali in background. Note smoke from fires above Holei Pali started by flow earlier in month; fires raged out of control during strong trade winds on February 10. 0654. Right. Another view of front of flow, moving through grass and brush. 0659.
Large `ohi`a, stalwart in front of flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Large `ohi`a, blazing afire as lava nears it, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Large `ohi`a in front of advancing flow. 0700. Right. Same `ohi`a, just starting to burn as lava nears it. In background, note remaining shed at end of road (the one with the tables, for those who've been there.) 0709.
Large `ohi`a, burning in middle of flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
View showing proximity of lava to road and hut, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Same `ohi`a as shown above, still standing but now in middle of flow, which continues its advance toward road. 0726. Right. View showing front of flow (left image) 60 m from road and remaining hut (along edge of road in background). The speed-limit sign is a reminder of times past. 0733.
Lava crossing pavement on Chain of Craters Road, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Lava crossing pavement on Chain of Craters Road, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Lava finally reached road at 1005 and by 1100, when these photos were taken, it was burning asphalt and creating a witches brew of gases.
Lava crossing pavement as workers move building, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Lava crossing pavement as workers move building, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Workers successfully moved the remaining visitor hut and two restrooms as lava crossed road. Site of hut in right image was covered by lava at 1500.

14 February 2003

Valentines Day treat; lava below the road

Lava moving toward sea cliff, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Lava burning grass on way to sea cliff, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Lava oozing seaward, toward sea cliff. Ocean visible in background, about 80 m away. 0630. Right. Flow burns grass on way to sea, visible in upper right. 0636.
Toes of lava, with sign and vehicle in background, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Lava with vehicle in background parked at old road turnaround, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Toes of lava oozing from under crust and edging the flow a bit closer to the water. Sign and parked vehicles visible through heat shimmer in background. 0647. Right. Thin flow oozing the last few tens of meters to the sea. Vehicle in background is parked at former turnaround; huts were near right edge of image. 0649.
Spreading lava toe at front of sluggish flow about 50 m from sea cliff, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
Tilted slab of crust on sluggish flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai'i
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Left. Lava toe breaking out from front of slowly advancing flow about 50 m from top of sea cliff. This was last toe to form here for more than 30 minutes. Width of toe, about 50 cm. 1117. Right. Slab of crust tilted and folded as lava moves sluggishly underneath. Width of view, about 2 m. 1123.

Video of eruptive activity

13 February 2003

Lava flowing across grassland near Chain of Craters Road, Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai`i February 13, 2003; 0603. Front of flow advancing rather quickly across grassland about 70 m from Chain of Craters Road. Grass ignites a short distance ahead of the lava, owing to the intense radiant heat. Width of scene, about 4 m.

Lava flowing across grassland near Chain of Craters Road, Mother's Day flow, Kilauea volcano, Hawai`i February 13, 2003; 0604. Same flow as in upper video, but a little farther upstream. Grass burns along the side of the stream. Width of view, 4-5 m.

Maps of lava-flow field, Kilauea Volcano

Map of flows from Pu`u `O`o: 17 February 2003

Map of lava flows on south coastal part of Kilauea Volcano as of 25 November 2002

Map shows lava flows erupted during the 1983-present activity of Pu`u `O`o and Kupaianaha (see large map). The most recent--and ongoing--activity has produced the lender, dark red flow along western edge of flow field. This flow entered the sea late on Valentine's Day to form the Kohola ocean entry. Lava is actively widening the flow on February 17, and the western arm is nearing the Chain of Craters Road. Visitors now can drive to Holei Sea Arch, 1.1 km from the Kohola flow, and walk to see the new flow. The new flow is part of the Mother's Day flow, which began erupting on May 12, 2002.. Lava from the Mother's Day flow (broad red flow on west side of flow field) reached the sea at West Highcastle early on July 19, at Wilipe`a early on July 21, and at Highcastle on August 8. From near the southwest base of Pu`u `O`o, the Mother's Day flow passes along the west side of the flow field and into the forest, where it started a large wildfire in May that continued into late July. By June 10, the Mother's Day flow had reached the base of Paliuli, the steep slope and cliff below Pulama pali and just above the coastal flat. At the base of Paliuli, the Mother's Day flow abruptly spread laterally in a series of small budding flows to cover an area nearly 2 km wide, gradually moving seaward until the West Highcastle and Wilipe`a lobes finally reached the ocean and started building benches. Activity at West Highcastle ended in early August, but entry began soon thereafter at Highcastle, eventually burying tiny kipuka of the Chain of Craters Road. The Wilipe`a entry died away slowly and had ended by mid-August. Highcastle and neighboring Highcastle Stairs entries ended on about August 23. For a time there were no active entries. Then Wilipe`a was reactivated on September 3 but stopped in December. West Highcastle likewise renewed its activity on September 16-17, died away during the night of September 18-19, and returned soon thereafter to continue to time of mapping. East arm of Mother's Day flow branched from Highcastle lobe in late October and sent three fingers into ocean at Highcastle on November 15, West Lae`apuki on November 19, and Lae`apuki on November 20. The Lae`apuki entries had stopped by November 29. If this sounds like a soap opera, the truth is even more confusing than the simplified version of activity given here.

 


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Updated: 25 February 2003 (DAS)