With all the earthquake activity that we’d seen lately (see this link with live earthquake maps, so you will see the quake activity today, but with comments reflecting what it looked like when I wrote this):
I was cruising through the volcano reports and it just sounded like something fun was going on. I'd love to find a video of this, but have not had time to look yet. Besides, folks are always talking about Chaitén or the Indonesian volcanos. It's fun to look at something else from time to time. (And yes, Chaitén is still going and still has a chance of being a Super Volcano, but that could be a million years away. Literally. While this puppy could put on a real show any day now!)
One of my favorite bits is this quote:
During 11-12 January, activity increased; ash plumes rose to higher altitudes and more explosions were detected. Incandescent blocks were ejected almost 1 km above the crater and 1.5 km away from the crater, onto the flanks.
It has got to be a bit of a show to see incandescent blocks flying a kilometer through the air! Also notice that 1916 – 1918 date for the last major eruption. There were many volcanos that blew their top around then, including Mount Lassen in California (IIRC it was 1914). IF we are entering a new volcanic active window as we enter a solar minimum, I’d expect to see some of that old cluster of volcanoes lighting up this time. We’ll have to wait and see, but the anticipation is what it’s all about …
TUNGURAHUA Ecuador 1.467°S, 78.442°W; summit elev. 5023 m
The IG reported that during 5-6 January a gas-and-ash plume from Tungurahua rose to an altitude of 6.5 km (21,300 ft) a.s.l. and drifted NW. The sulfur dioxide emission rate was 3,200 tons per day, ten times the value measured during the previous months. On 7 January seismic tremor duration and amplitude increased, and signals indicative of explosions were detected. On 6 and 7 January, incandescent blocks were ejected and fell back into the crater. During 8-10 January, cloud cover often prevented observations; on 10 January a steam-and-ash plume rose to an altitude of 6.5 km (21,300 ft) a.s.l. and drifted W. Incandescence from the crater was sometimes seen at night. Ashfall up to 5 mm thick was reported in areas W and SW on 9 and 10 January. Roaring noises and vibrating glass were occasionally noted during the reporting period.
During 11-12 January, activity increased; ash plumes rose to higher altitudes and more explosions were detected. Incandescent blocks were ejected almost 1 km above the crater and 1.5 km away from the crater, onto the flanks. Gas-and-ash plumes rose to an altitude of 8 km (26,200 ft) a.s.l. and drifted in multiple directions. Ashfall was reported in areas to the NNW, W, SW, and S.
Geologic Summary. The steep-sided Tungurahua stratovolcano towers more than 3 km above its northern base. It sits ~140 km S of Quito, Ecuador’s capital city, and is one of Ecuador’s most active volcanoes. Historical eruptions have all originated from the summit crater. They have been accompanied by strong explosions and sometimes by pyroclastic flows and lava flows that reached populated areas at the volcano’s base. The last major eruption took place from 1916 to 1918, although minor activity continued until 1925. The latest eruption began in October 1999 and prompted temporary evacuation of the town of Baños on the N side of the volcano.
So toward the south of the country and away from Quito, but a “big one” that is often active.