Avacha, Kamchatka’s Red Riding Hood

September 3rd, 2013

Avacha, Kamchatka’s Red Riding HoodAvachinskaya Sopka – colloquially also known as Avachinsky or Avacha – is the backyard volcano of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, the regional capital of Far East Russia’s volcano peninsula. It is a ~4000 years old Somma-type volcano, meaning it is growing and prospering inside the caldera of a historic fire mountain. The magma rising up inside the Avacha contains more iron ore than usual. That again reacts with the omnipresent magmatic gas carried along and iron oxides, in particular iron(III) oxide, emerge. Latter one dresses the volcano with a literally fiery red coat »»

Mount Ruapehu – Above the Clouds of North New Zealand

July 11th, 2013

Mount Ruapehu – Above the Clouds of North New ZealandMount Ruapehu marks the southern end of the Taupo volcanic zone. Together with stunning Tongariro national park it stands for a region that shapes and defines the character of New Zealand’s north island. With an elevation of impressive 2797 metres it is also North New Zealand’s lighthouse, its highest spot; a place easily seen from the far away. Its crater is jagged, dramatic but also accommodates a wonderful crater lake. Volcanically seen Ruapehu is everything but dormant and its eruptions mostly occur without an advance warning. To boot it’s known for ist hot volcanic avalanches, so called lahars »»

Simpson Harbour – Panorama of the Rabaul Caldera

June 22nd, 2013

Simpson Harbour – Panorama of the Rabaul CalderaThe Simpson Harbour is one of the world’s largest and most beautiful natural harbours. It measures impressive 14×9 kilometres and was once, in World War II an important battle field of the Japanese and Allies. While their fight for supremacy in Oceania and the whole war is over already, a different battle still happens. that is a confrontation of volcanic origin as the harbour is actually a huge caldera having a massive magma chamber underneath. The destructive potential of the Rabaul caldera can throw the whole world into complete turmoil. It’s a lovely and beautiful place on Earth with but certain side effects »»

Tongariro – The Film Star among Volcanoes

April 8th, 2013

Tongariro – The Film Star among VolcanoesThe Tongariro Alpine Crossing is one of New Zealand’s most known hikes, a so called Great Walk and like the name already tells visitors can cross the massif of an active volcano. In particular movie fans will know about this place from the epic “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy as it is the place where finally gets rid of evil ring. Today and in the real world countless tourists are meandering along the foot of the picturesque Ngauruhoe cone and do the climb up to Red Crater, Emerald Lakes and Blue Lake »»

Fissure Eruption 2012 at Tolbachik

December 17th, 2012

Link collection of the best photos and videos showing the fissure eruption 2012 at southern flank of Tolbachik volcano on Kamchatka peninsula in Russia »»

Ice Caves and Fumaroles – South Kamchatka’s volcanic Soul

December 13th, 2012

Ice Caves and Fumaroles – South Kamchatka’s volcanic SoulMutnovsky and Gorely are the names of the volcanic protagonists in Kamchatka’s South; two places known to many tourists visiting Kamchatka as almost every tour makes a stop over there to bring humans in touch with the admittedly weaker appearances of the biggest force on our planet. South Kamchatka is more inhabited than the north, which is no surprise as it is home of the regional capital Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and its suburb Yelizovo, the airfield welcoming the big and small airplanes from coming from Moscow and elsewhere. Landing there is something absolutely unique in the world since you automatically make contact with Kamchatka’s volcanic soul when hovering along an impressive guard of honour formed by majestic Koryakskaya Sopka and fiery red Avachinskaya Sopka volcanoes. Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky lives its own way and in particular at rain and wind bad weather mingles inseparably with the rough charm of the market-women »»

Kliuchevskoi and Tolbachik – The northern Volcano Giants

October 10th, 2012

Kliuchevskoi and Tolbachik – The northern Volcano GiantsKliuchevskoi – an impressive name reminding of a Russian poet and thinker. Actually the official name of Russia’s pyramid is Klyuchevskaya Sopka (Ключевская сопка) but even for the locals this title seems to be a little too long. The fire mountain stands for quite a bunch of superlatives, for example being with an altitude of about 4800 meters the highest volcano not only on Eurasian continental plate but also in northern hemisphere. It is majestic, tall, snow covered and farouche, having a perfectly shaped cone and it is part of one of the biggest volcanic systems on our planet; a volcano cluster being that large being easily visible to the unaided eye even from space. To the north of Kliuchevskoi the name giving village of Klyuchi (Ключи) is located, a small settlement at the banks of yet another name giver, the Kamchatka River. Klyuchi is the gate to the northern territories of the Kamchatka peninsula such as the unpredictable, old and wide spread Shiveluch (Шивелуч) volcano. From Klyuchi you can also access the uninhabited East by serpentine endless tracks cutting through the forest and also the South of the volcano mountain cluster with impressive Tolbachik (Толбачик) volcano isn’t that far away anymore »»

Sunda – Strait at the Fire Mountain

January 2nd, 2012

Sunda – Strait at the Fire MountainWhen magma, which is usually entirely covered by the Earth’s mantle, rises up to the surface and gets in direct contact with water, then experts are only speaking soberly about phreatomagmatic eruptions but the rest of the world gets confronted with an all too often catastrophic explosive power being that immense like a couple of Hiroshima nukes. Back in 1883 such an epic volcanic eruption happened in Indonesia, between Java and Sumatra Islands. More than 20km3 of rocks and ash got tossed into the air followed by an up to 40m high Tsunami that erased all villages framing the Sunda Strait. The old volcano got almost vaporised but its offspring is already waiting in the wings, the Anak Krakatoa; a place that gets reconquered by life under as well as over the waterline »»

Tavurvur in Black and White

October 3rd, 2011

Tavurvur in Black and WhiteThe huge cloud packages carried by the south-east trade winds over Papua New Guinea are regulars in the sky spanning the world’s third largest insular state. Unbelievably impressive and beautiful light moods emerge when the sun and clouds are dancing together while letting in particular the small strato volcano Tavurvur, being located inside the Rabaul caldera, appear very photogenic; even that photogenic that it is worth to experiment with a black & white conversion of some already known images »»

Rumbling Rabaul – The raging Cauldron of Tavurvur

August 31st, 2011

Rumbling Rabaul – The raging Cauldron of TavurvurRabaul, a settlement in the East of magic exotic Papua New Guinea, has literally one of the hottest chronicles worldwide. On the one hand the equatorial sun is frying everything at temperatures around 30°C and air moisture of ~90%, on the other hand during World War II. Rabaul was caught in the middle when Japanese and US Americans were battling against each other and for dominance in the Pacific Ocean. That’s only the most recent history though. The biggest imminence was and still is the forces of nature as within living memory they ever emerged at that remote spot of our planet. In particular the eastern end of New Britain Island is at the mercy of volcanism and tectonics; there Earth’s most powerful forces are clashing at top speed and get all too often fully unleashed. Earthquakes are a daily occurrence and being powered by a magma chamber located only 3 to 4 kilometres deep, even two fire mountains – Vulcan Crater and the pretty explosive beast of Tavurvur – are letting off their infernal steam. Although this sounds like hell on Earth life, nature and humans are always coming back to this place and in particular wildlife under water could develop to worldwide unique undersea beauty »»