Wednesday, April 25, 2012

V is for Volcanoes

I've been fascinated by volcanoes pretty much my entire life.  At their core, volcanoes are a reminder of just how active and violent our planet can be.  Their eruptions are both beautiful and terrifying at the same time.  They can form new islands in the ocean and can also destroy everything in their nearby radius.

My interest in volcanoes started when I discovered the portion of the non-fiction section of the school library with books on various kinds of natural disasters and events.  I read everything the library had on tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes and storms.  My favorites, and the ones that I ended up checking out again and again were the ones on volcanoes.  I also watched PBS specials on volcanoes on TV when I could, and was fascinated by footage of volcano eruptions.

As a young man, one of my favorite camping destinations with my family was Lassen Volcanic National Park.  I very much enjoyed hiking to the top of the Cinder Cone and Mt. Lassen, both dormant volcanoes.  Other hikes, such as the Bumpass Hell trail, offered views of bubbling mud pits, steam vents, and similar, allowing one to see (on smaller scale) related geological action.

I have been to Hawaii a couple of times as an adult, but have not yet managed to go tour the active lava flows; I would like to go back to do that someday.  I have enjoyed visits to other areas of volcanic in the northernmost part of California and Oregon.  Crater Lake in Oregon, for example, is actually contained within what was once a massive volcano that collapsed a long, long time ago.  I'm always interested to visit sites of volcanic activity and marvel at the awesome potential of our earth.  What can I say; I'm a fan!


  1. What cracked me up about living in the shadow of Mt Rainier was the Volcano Evacuation Route signs on the freeways. Traffic is jammed under normal circumstances! We were told it'd be a half hour from time of eruption to the time that the huge lahar would hit the valleys below. 30 minutes for everyone to get to higher ground or perish. It doesn't look good for Pierce County in all honesty.

    Still, the volcanos of WA State are a sight to behold! St. Helen's half blown off, Rainier & Adams, Glacier Peak, Baker....

  2. It's the REAL "what lies beneath" ! I'm trying to visit all the A-Z Challenge Blogs in April. My alphabet is at

  3. My experience with a live volcano was back home in the Philippines. Mt. Pinatubo erupted in 1991. The ashes were everywhere. It was so difficult for me to wear my contact lens at that time going to college because the ash was irritating my eyes. Everything looked like covered with grey-colored snow.

    Then in 1997, the movie "Dante's Peak" came out. It was interesting and thrilling. I really like movies about natural disasters because it has an underlying lesson on what to do when it happens. But I still love "Twister" better.

    A Ladybug's Life