Mount St Helens Spews Ash and Steam to 36,000 Ft
Washington State´s Mount St Helens sprang to life again yesterday afternoon. The volcano´s spectacular eruption on May 18 1980, blew the top completely off of the mountain and flattened forests for miles around.
From time to time for the past 25 years the volcano has rumbled away, spewing ash and steam. Magma is not far below the surface as is indicated by the two lava domes which have grown in the bowl of the crater. Yesterday, Mount St Helens had been seismically quiet for most of the day but just in the late afternoon, a 2.0 earthquake on the volcano´s east side rattled to life. About an hour later, it blew. Yesterdays eruption lasted about 30 minutes and eased off just before sunset.
A remote camera on the north rim of the volcano caught images which indicate that the eruption came from a vent on the side of an enormous lava dome which began to form last fall. It appears that the dome itself has remained intact. The explosion was the 4th major explosive episode since September.
The Mount St Helens VolcanoCam has some fabulous images.