Friday, January 18, 2008

Kilauea Lava, Hawaii

Kilauea Lava, Hawaii
Originally uploaded by JoeDuck
On the western edge of Hawaii's big island past and present collide on a regular basis as lava from Kilauea's current eruption slowly makes its way to the sea. This 2005 photo is taken near the "Chain of Craters" road in the national park which has been destroyed by a series of flows over the past few decades.

Unlike explosive "pyroclastic" volcanos, Hawaii's Kilauea tends to release lava and gas very slowly, allowing visitors to step to within a few feet of flowing hot lava. The intense heat prevents you from getting too close or falling in. Hot lava quickly cools and "skins over" and can be walked on within hours.

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