El Hierro Volcano eruption (Canary Islands) : Part 39 – April 4 until April 10

Last update: April 14, 2012 at 4:42 pm by By

This is Part 39 of the El Hierro Volcano eruption report

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With the collaboration of Joke Volta, an El Hierro resident and Julio del Castillo Vivero, photographer.
Read also : (28/7 – early 09)  – (25/09 – 10/10)  -  (11/10 – 13/10) - (14/10 – 17-10)  -  (18/10 – 21/10)   (22/10 – 26/10 )(27/10 – 31/10 )(01/11 – 03/11 )(04/11 – 06/11 )(07/11 – 08/11)(09/11- 11/11)  – (12/11 – 15/11)  – (16/11 – 19/11)  – (20/11 – 23/11)(24/11 – 27/11)(28/11 – 02/12) - (03/12 – 07/12)(08/12 – 11/12)(12/12 – 15/12)(16/12 – 18/12)(19/12 – 25/12)(26/12 – 31/12)(01/01 – 03/01)(04/01 – 07/01)(08/01 – 13/01)(14/01 – 19/01) - (20/01 – 25/01) -  (26/01 – 30/01) – (31/01 – 04/02) – (05/02 – 10/02) – (11/02 – 16/02) – (17/02 – 23/02) – (24/02 –29/02) – (1/03 – 10/03) – (11/03 – 18/03) –  (19/03 – 23/03) –  (24/03 – 28/03) - Part 38 (29/03 – 03/04)Part 39 (04/04 – 10/04)
Useful links : @VolcanoReportEl Hierro Picasa Photo Album
Our Webcam pages :   NO more eruption webcam ! Too expensive says the local government !!


Update 10/04 – 19:24 UTC
- Joke Volta’s afternoon pictures

Update 10/04 – 11:24 UTC
- The strong jacuzzi’s of the past have been replaced by even more faint jacuzzi’s and bubbling water. The eruption area as it was seen on the peak of the activity (from the main vent to the west), looks as it is still open for degassing, multiplying the number of jacuzzi locations.

Update 10/04 – 10:49 UTC
This is a message from Joke Volta who cares a lot about El Hierro visitors !
El Hierro is a beautiful island, really a place to visit for people who like nature, volcanoes…
Some of you, visitors, may be know a little bit more about geology, and the landscape of El Hierro offers a great variety of volcanic landscapes.
The best way to discover all this, is by making long walks.
The island has some well marked footpaths, but other areas are still virgin like, and the government is busy to mark new volcanic-interesting tracks.
El Hierro still conserves huge areas, where nobody lives, far away from the first village.
Being a young volcanic island, the landscape is very irregular, and you can find spots where no human noise reaches you.
Of course this can be a great adventure, and will be a special Hierro attraction. But I also want to advise all those adventure-tourists, that , when they wish to make this experience, they have to prepare well ahead, this means good shoes, enough water, and realizing that you do NOT have mobile connectivity in every cave, trail or corner of the island. For instance lava-tubes can be very interesting, because El Hierro is full of it, and the biggest part of them haven’t been explored. Natives know that those lava tubes can be very dangerous to explore. Tourists mostly do not know that.
One can get lost, because these lava- tubes have an enormous underground network and extensions, some are as long as 11 km.
If you want to walk alone, (guiding-walks are also possible here), please inform someone on the island. And accident is maybe not likely to happen, but when it happens you rather like to be found in relatively good health.
It would be nice, that those adventure-visitors are aware of the characteristics of the island, and that they can come to the island, being prepared that there exists certain natural forces bigger than human.I hope, that they take the example of locals, to respect this impressive volcanic constructions.
An adventure only can be an adventure when you can tell about it later on…

Update 10/04 – 08:23 UTC
- 2 new earthquakes since midnight
* at 02:28 a M 0.6 at 9 km depth to the SW of El Pinar
* at 05:24 a M 0.5 at 16 km depth to the S of Frontera


Update 09/04 – 23:55 UTC
- @ 21:24 a 0.9 magnitude earthquake occurred at a depth of 15 km to the SW of El Pinar (below the main vent area)

Update 09/04 – 22:24 UTC
- Interesting document for all those who want to go to El Hierro to see natural formations on the island, with extensive material for excursions or geological itineraries with numerous stops… I think it is more than interesting for those who like the geology, volcanoes, and the formations of the island. Click here for this document
- Joke Volta’s afternoon pictures

Update 09/04 – 14:47 UTC
- Joke Volta’s morning pictures

Update 09/04 – 13:26 UTC
- It is a pity as IEO never used their ROVs at the El Hierro submarine volcano. IEO has announced today that they will use their ROVS in getting to know the biodiversity of the Gulf of Cadiz (which will be of course a great study). We could understand that IEO would not have risked their expensive ROV’s at the time of the eruption itself, but since PEVOLCA officially announced that the eruption was ended early March, the risk became almost non-existent. The Ramon Margalef could have used the ROV when he arrived on site during his last mission (after PEVOLCA issued his “end of the eruption” statement.

Update 09/04 – 11:56 UTC
- Joke Volta reports that :
* La Restinga looks like a ghost town (exaggerated of course)
* The Restingolita Information center at La Restinga received 280 visitors during the easter vacation days
* Apartments (main tourist accommodation) have hardly been rented


Update 08/04 – 21:56 UTC
- We received the following note from somebody of the Cornide de Saavedra :

This is the Cornide. We are in the Cetobaph Cruise 2012. We are looking for zifios (ER: zifios are dolphins) and studying the Oceanographic’s conditions of El Mar de Las Calmas. Nothing about the volcano geology or something similar. This is a multi disciplinary cruise between the Las Palmas University, IEO and La Laguna University.
If you need more information about our cruise, please, ask us.
La Laguna University Research

- Afternoon pictures Joke Volta

Update 08/04 – 17:20 UTC
- A special series of images from today’s Las Calmas sea jacuzzi’s and currents.

Update 08/04 – 17:00 UTC
- Joke Volta’s morning images

Update 08/04 – 11:55 UTC
- Joke Volta reports she saw a jacuzzi this morning. Also, in the past the days it has become increasingly difficult to distinguish the jacuzzi from strong currents at Las Calmas sea. She has taken photographs which will be online later today.
- First earthquake of the day: 10:09 UTC M 0.7 SW El Pinar.

Update 08/04 – 08:10 UTC
- NO earthquakes since a couple of days (bad news for activity lovers)
- The bathymetry results of the BIO Hesperides from approx. 1 week ago (Polar Oceanographic research vessel) are indicating NO change of the cone depth. (source : Diario de Avisos)
- The ministry of health of the Canary Islands has a website which indicates whether it is safe to swim at some beaches. At El Hierro, some beaches like Tacoron and the lighthouse are seemingly “forgotten” says Joke.
- The video below has been published by INVOLCAN in cooperation with the Guardia Civil Helicopter unit (yes, the people responsible for almost all El Hierro helicopter footage). The 15 minute video shows beautiful images of the overflight of the still active Pico del Teide, Tenerife’s sky high beautiful volcano.


Update 07/04 – 18:10 UTC
- Joke Volta’s afternoon images – nice clouds, a faint jacuzzi and RAIN in La Restinga!


Update 07/04 – 11:33 UTC
Communication of the authorities on the El Hierro eruption has been all the time for “Spanish Speaking Only“. We have no problem with it at earthquake-report.com, but if the island of 1000 volcanoes, as it is selling itself in the international tourism market, wants to be taken seriously, a bilingual communication would have been the least they could do.
The blocking of the webcam is another example of the narrow minded spirit of local politicians. The island of thousand volcanoes does not want to show any stirring in the Las Calmas sea anymore. The reason they gave for it is simply ridiculous. What will they decide if on a certain day the cone gets above the surface and stays active for several years like in Hawaii. Would they close the webcam view also ?
Our proposal : please do not sell yourself any more as “the island of thousand volcanoes” and make a visit to USGS and the National Park Service in the USA to see how such an event can be turned into a great positive result.

Update 07/04 – 11:15 UTC
- Joke Volta’s morning images. Joke reports a very calm milky see. A stain or eventually faint jacuzzi is hard to find in this kind of sea surface.
- Apartments in La Restinga are poorly occupied (just like at La Palma). Many people are only soending the day at the southern part of the Island but do not stay overnight at La Restinga.
- 3 out of 10 La Restinga diving companies have clients at the moment.
- As the Spanish authorities are so great in reporting what their ships are doing in the Las Calmas sea, the only option left is to ask around ! Due to the abnormal routing of the Cornide De Saavedra, we tried to find out whether the ship was doing bathymetry or something else. Joke also spotted the ship staying a long time at a particular location.


Update 06/04 – 21:44 UTC
- Joke’s special Cornide De Saavedra series

Update 06/04 – 14:48 UTC
- Some early afternoon images from Joke Volta

Update 06/04 – 12:34 UTC
- Joke Volta’s morning images (15 in total)


Update 06/04 – 08:13 UTC
- NO earthquakes since midnight
- The (horizontal) deformation of the island remains almost unchanged. Some scientists think that the volcano may keep his inflated position for a much longer time. Unfortunately IGN does not publish the vertical deformation. This kind of “selective” publishing feeds the “conspiracy” followers. They think that if you hide some information, you are trying to fool public opinion.
- Carmen Romero Ruiz, a researcher specialized in volcanic geomorphology at the University of La Laguna, has found evidence of many El Hierro eruptions during the last centuries. Some signs are pointing to 2 eruptions in the 17th century and even more in pre-hispanic times. She also said that a submarine eruption has occurred in 1793 . Interesting to know also is that the island of La Palma has had approx. 20 eruptive periods the last 2500 year.
- The Cornide De Saavedra is still navigating along the La Restinga coast. Results however seem to be TOP SECRET as we haven’t seen any results from the BIO Hesperides neither.

Image courtesy Marinetraffic.com


Update 05/04 – 23:55 UTC
- Joke Volta’s afternoon images
- ER reader Leona found out in marinetraffic.com that the oceanographic ship Cornide De Saavedra was heading for La Restinga or La Estaca. The Cornide De Saavedra has been used before for bathymetry purposes.

Update 05/04 – 14:42 UTC
- Somebody in La Restinga told Joke that a faint Jacuzzi has been seen. There she runs again … More devotion than a some (not all) scientists !
- Morning pictures Joke Volta

Update 05/04 – 13:09 UTC
- The earth is still shaking below the island. 2 new earthquakes ! IGN will have to stay a little longer.
One at 06:31 at a depth of 19 km with a magnitude of 1.5 Here
One at 08:00 at a depth of 12 km with a magnitude of 1.0 Here

Update 05/04 – 07:22 UTC
- NO earthquakes since the day before yesterday
- The government of the Canary Islands has approved an aid package of 21,000 euro for el Hierro
- La Palma reports also very low tourist occupation during the Easter week
- The Government of the Canary Islands could not detect any longer contamination in the fish caught in the Las Calmas sea. So, the fish can be consumed safely, but because there are still to few fish in the area it is advised not to go fishing yet.


Update 04/04 – 21:32 UTC
- Below a map from IEO with the main vent and the elevation of the coastal sea floor. Joke has encircled where she estimates the stirring occurred this afternoon (although this is very difficult of course – the location is also based of other independent testimonies).
Those people following this eruption from the beginning do certainly remember that in the beginning of November, many vents were detected by the Guardia Civil helicopter. The main reason was that the eruption is his strongest phase was a rift eruption. The current location may be one of these earlier opened rift spots.

Map courtesy IEO - Click on the map to see it in full size

Update 04/04 – 18:00 UTC
- This afternoon, Joke while on her way to El Pinar, notices a stirring spot in the Las Calmas sea. Devoted to her task, she heads down again and shoots the pictures below. Very particular and even strange on this image series is that the active stirring spot is rather far from the main vent. The least we can say is “surprising !” Joke has received 6 other independent observations of the activity.

Update 04/04 – 13:59 UTC
- NO earthquakes since midnight
- continuing microseismicity
- Nemesio Perez is, according to somebody who has regular contact with him, convinced that the eruption is completely over.
- The Government of El Hierro reports that it will take all necessary measures to improve tourism. The said that the tourist submarine boat in La Restinga has cost 500,000 euro to buy it and 90,000 euro annually to maintain it in good condition.
- Morning images Joke Volta


Read also : Scientific paper reveals massive historic Tenerife volcano flank collapse
Read also: Economic impact on El Hierro and the Canary Islands if an aerial eruption would occur


Volcano Discussion Panel : If you are a person who wants to discuss and read about all aspects of volcanoes, this discussion panel might be a very good place to hang around. Especially if we start speculating about what to happen next, this panel is a great place to look at. Give it a chance.

Update 05/04 – 14:42 UTC
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