El Hierro Volcano eruption (Canary Islands) : Part 22 – December 26 until December 31

This is Part 22 of the El Hierro Volcano eruption report


Some of this info is also posted into our Facebook Volcano PageGoogle+ VolcanoesGoogle+ Volcanoes and earthquakes
With the collaboration of Joke Volta, an El Hierro resident
“Volcano Only” twitter : @VolcanoReport  -  3 in 1  WEBCAM pageEl Hierro Picasa Web Album

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
Read also
: Part 1 (from July 28 until early September)
Read also: Part 2 (from September 25 until October 10 )
Read also: Part 3 (from October 11 until October 13 )
Read also: Part 4 (from October 14 until October 17 )
Read also: Part 5 (from October 18 until October 21 )
Read also: Part 6 (from October 22 until October 26 )
Read also: Part 7 (from October 27 until October 31 )
Read also: Part 8 (from November 1 until November 3
Read also: Part 9 (from November 4 until November 6
Read also: Part 10 (from November 7 until November 8)
Read also: Part 11 (from November 9 until November 11)
Read also: Part 12 (from November 12 until November 15)
Read also: Part 13 (from November 16 until November 19)
Read also: Part 14 (from November 20 until November 23)
Read also: Part 15 (from November 24 until November 27)
Read also: Part 16 (from November 28 until December 2)
Read also: Part 17 (from December 3 until December 7)
Read also: Part 18 (from December 8 until December 11)
Read also: Part 19 (from December 12 until December 15
Read also: Part 20 (from December 16 until December 18)
Read also: Part 21 (from December 19 until December 25)

Update 31/12 - 15:49 UTC
- Harmonic tremor was on its peak today at 12:50 UTC but has been gradually decreasing little by little.
- NO more earthquakes
- Involcan has published a great video showing their staff and the main events of the eruption period + some nice music on it. Congratulations to the INVOLCAN people for their dedication and great coverage !

Update 31/12 - 11:07 UTC
- A new M 1.1 earthquake occurred at 10:54 on a depth of 23 km. Epicenter below Tacaron.
- Joke has just released her morning "reflection" pictures. Beautiful views of the island. Click on the pictures to watch them in full size

Reflections on El Hierro by Joke Volta - click on the picture to see it in full size

Update 31/12 - 11:07 UTC
- The Restingolitas, as the Smoking Lava Stones are called in El Hierro, are coming up at regular intervals. As our 2 good webcams are having server problems (also the Frontera webcams are down), we have to stay with the U-stream El Pinar webcam. He has a fairly good zoom, but as this is a fixed camera, he shoots almost always to the side of the SLS. The stones can be seen on the wide angle though. Keep looking.

Smoking Lava Stones on December 31 - Image captured by Julio del Castillo Vivero

Update 31/12 - 10:26 UTC
- At 10:08 reader Mariette wrote : From my apartment in La Restinga we clearly (and without binoculars) can see the plumes and big restingolitas bubbling up the last half hour. The volcano isn’t sleeping yet.
- At 10:09 - Joke did send a text message (she is taking pictures on the hills surrounding La Restinga) : SLS
- At 09:55 - Julio wrote : UPDATE! Smoking lava seen on ustream webcam. Not much, but here it is (image to the right)
Congratulations to this great team of observers. As our readers can see, nothing goes unobserved during this eruption.

Update 31/12 - 09:36 UTC
- Variable harmonic tremor fastly subsiding after a stronger period. Fascinating what the next step will be !
- At 04:48 a weak 0.9 earthquake occurred at a depth of 12 km below the crater area on the top of the island. As there is no consistent feeder area or depth (earthquakes epicenters are changing all the time in area and depth) the future of the eruption is very unsure and can be called as "surviving".

Update 30/12 - 23:53 UTC
- NO more earthquakes today
- A strong burst which lasted about 2 minutes occurred at 20:28. In general we can say that harmonic tremor did increase slightly over the last 8 hours. A new phenomena for the last couple of days is that hydromagmatic bursts seem to have returned.
- Joke was talking tonight about a carried away stain in front of Tacaron, but at the same time some stirring brown water in that area ! She said it will probably simply the stain from the vent. We think that this has to be checked tomorrow.
- In he daily visit to the CAP science center in La Restinga, IGN was talking about multiple emission points today. We remember the same from earlier helicopter images.
- Julio made a double time lapse in 1 video. The first part has been compressed 100 times, the second 10

Update 30/12 - 17:09 UTC
Click here for another series of beautiful pictures taken by Joke Volta during the morning hours

Update 30/12 - 15:11 UTC
- A third earthquake occurred only 2 minutes after the second and ONLY 1 km from El Pinar :
1119453 30/12/2011 13:01:32 16 1.1 W EL PINAR.IHI

Update 30/12 - 13:28 UTC
- Joke sends her regards to all those people who enjoyed her participation to this report for the last couple of months and she also thanks those people sending her a happy birthday yesterday and today.
- 2 new earthquakes occurred with only 32 seconds in between them
2011/12/30 12:59:04.60 Depth 19.60 M 1.80 NW FRONTERA.IHI
2011/12/30 12:59:36.14 Depth 22.70 M 1.10 W FRONTERA.IHI

Update 30/12 - 13:15 UTC
- Reader MOHO (see comments) has made an image in mixing yesterdays HT graph with todays HT graph. The tremor almost doubled compared to some time frames from yesterday. Thank you for sharing

Comparison of Harmonic Tremor at El Hierro on December 29 and 30

Update 30/12 - 13:00 UTC
- Julio del Castillo Vivero has been active today and time lapsed a video from 07:53 until 12:37 in only 33 seconds. The Salvamar Adhara becomes a real speedboat 😉

Update 30/12 - 12:47 UTC
- Harmonic Tremor is back. It shows the same amplitude than the last couple of days. Even with minor HT, we see a defined stain with now and then a weak Jacuzzi
- INVOLCAN sells a beautiful Wall Calender for 10 Euro. We can warmly advise to buy it, although they are still living in the 20e century (no Paypal or CC payment possibilities). Click here for the Involcan website. Update : After the translation from Julio, Involcan has replied that payments via Paypal will be possible from next Monday.

Update 30/12 - 10:26 UTC
- We are like blind people this morning as Harmonic Tremor is still down (not that there is no eruption anymore)
- NO new earthquakes since midnight
- a stain which can well be seen on the webcam
- The Salvamar Adhara is still navigating around the stain with IGN people on board. As we had written yesterday, IGN Carmen Lopez did plan to make this trip today to record underwater video near the vent. They are not using a high tech ROV, but an underwater video camera connected to a 200 meter long cable. They look like fishermen trying to catch the ideal images from the erupting material. Joke Volta saw the raw images yesterday and she told us that she saw, to her surprise a lot of jellyfish! She also saw some reddish color on the raw tape but was far from sure that it was incandescent lava.

29/12 - 21:26 UTC
Besides the beautiful stain most of the day, Julio was amazed to find Smoking Lava Stones in his time lapse of the day. The smoking lava stones show up at 18:38 UTC while the harmonic tremor was slightly up. The video went too fast and finally the SLS could not be seen. He captured however a few images from that particular moment.
Those people who want to see the time lapse of the entire day can click here. A full day is compressed in only 6 minutes.
We at Earthquake-Report.com are recalling today's smoking lava stones to "Smoking Birthday Stones" and are offering them virtually to Joke for her birthday. Running slopes up and down, trying to find out the latest details just like a professional reporter, and this on her birthday, not too many people will do it. Happy Birthday Joke !
Joke has already seen the raw video of the Salvamar Adhara. She told us a lot of details of what she has seen and we are convinced that it will be very interesting. The video will be published later today or tomorrow. IGN will try to make the same trip tomorrow, but during the first daylight hours, hoping that the waves and current will be less than today.

Smoking Lava Stones on December 29 at 18:38 - image captured by Julio de Castillo Vivero

Julio did made a new time lapse specifically from the SLS period. On the video you will see them floating.

29/12 - 17:47 UTC
- 16:54 UTC - New Earthquake M 1.4 @ a depth of 16.3 km below Tacaron. The tremor can be seen also on the frequency HT graph

29/12 - 15:59 UTC
- Those among you looking from time to time at the Village and eruption webcam must have seen the Salvamar Adhara along the stain. Joke waited for the arrival of the ship and tried to find out what they were doing. The crew and Carmen Lopez (IGN) said to her that they have been trying to make pictures with a special underwater camera. The camera was linked to a 200 meter long cable, although they did not use the full length. She said that they were not able to trace the vent as the visibility was too low and as the current was too strong. Let us hope that IGN will publish these pictures later today.

Carmen Lopez (IGN) with the underwater camera and a crew member of the Salvamar Adhara - image courtesy Joke Volta

29/12 - 14:13 UTC
- While we were all looking at the El Hierro volcano, Jorgen Aabech, a dedicated Norvegian volcano follower did wrote us about an minor eruption in the Red Sea. We checked a number of details, saw a small cloud but did not see any continuing eruption, so we discontinued following this event. As NASA satellite imaginary proofed the birth of a new island, similar to what we were looking at El Hierro, we compiled a lot of material and wrote an in-depth article today.
Surtseyan eruption along the coast of Yemen forms a new island – Today eruption cloud + stain !

29.12.2011 – On December 19, fishermen from Salif port city in the west of Yemen reported seeing an eruption with red lava rising to a height of 30 m. This was the first eruption the fisherman can recall from the area. Satellite images have proven afterwards that a new island has been born in the Zubair volcano group.

Update 29/12 - 10:45 UTC
- Joke Volta continues to invest enormous energy in this El Hierro volcano project. In the current stage, she make pictures during the morning and afternoon hours, she visits almost daily the CAP IGN science center and during the evening hours she traces all volcano related news on the Canary Islands. Without Joke this article would have been a lot shorter and less complete. The pictures below have been taken this morning. Click on the picture to see all of them in full size.

December 29 images courtesy Joke Volta

December 29 images courtesy Joke Volta - click on the picture to watch all images in full size

- We are currently locked out of our own Facebook accounts for "a couple of days". Reason : they have found a trojan horse on the editing computer (the trojan was not immediately detected by anti virus software). 10 minutes later it was gone, but nevertheless the punishment was already given and was very severe. Our Facebook fans can still write on the page, so, we invite you to copy part of what you see here in the "Volcano" Facebook page.
- We have a very troubled relation with Facebook, as they have blocked in July 2010 our Chile and Indonesian sites with over 35,000 fans, for a so called infringement against their rules (we tried to find out what we did wrong, but nobody could or wanted us to give an answer). The Fan pages were earthquake related. The blocking of these 2 pages was the reason that we diverted our attention to this site as we did not want to experience the same on a later date.
- Nevertheless, we still love Facebook and even more the less Popular Google+, which gives us publishers, far better updating methods

Update 29/12 - 09:55 UTC
- A new earthquake occurred at 09:04 UTC with a magnitude of 1.5 and at a depth of 14 km. Epicenter below land in the Tacaron area.
- The Jacuzzi who started yesterday with ups and downs, is still very active (can be seen well on the eruption webcam)
- Julio del Castillo Vivero, who is cooperating with earthquake-report.com since he started creating his time lapse video's, has pushed his creativity a little further in making a split screen time lapse video from the activity from 07:30 until 08:30 this morning

Update 29/12 - 07:50 UTC
- Although we only had minor harmonic tremor all night long, we were very surprised to see a beautiful stain this morning. It can still be seen at this time on the Eruption webcam. At regular times we see a jacuzzi in the middle of the stain and on the same location as the former vent.
- El Hierro experienced a new M 2.3 earthquake at a depth of 18 km at 02:46 earlier today. Click here for the center.

Stain at 07:30 December 29 - image courtesy Cabildo / Telefonica webcam

Update 28/12 - 23:55 UTC
- We have just published the afternoon images of Joke Volta. Some are really beautiful. Click here to watch them.
- A total of 3 weak earthquakes today (see details below)
-The eruption is not over yet (see the great time lapse video with the Jacuzzi from Julio del Castillo Vivero).
- During the evening hours the signal picked gradually up again, this after having collapsed at 20:45. Just before 20:45, a few strong bursts had occurred and a partial collapse could have been encountered.

Update 28/12 - 20:30 UTC
- IGN has listed a new earthquake which occurred at 17:09 UTC. The depth was 14.1 km and the magnitude 1.0. Epicenter right below the Tacaron cliffs.
- Julio del Castille Vivero is doing great work since several weeks in recording one or more webcam images. The video below shows the revival of the eruption / vent and even a minor jacuzzi. The first video shows the renewed activity in a time lapse (faster speed) and the second video is the real time video. The time frame is from 17:16 until 19:07.

Important Update 28/12 - 17:16 UTC
- The signal is picking up again, lets say from --- to -- . We are curious whether the magma found an opening in the same vent or elsewhere, but we have definitely a minor eruption again

Update 28/12 - 16:44 UTC
- Joke went to the CAP science center and had a talk to the employee and with Carmen Lopez from IGN. Mrs. Lopez expects that the eruption is nearly over as the process was subsiding the last several weeks. Sge stressed that it will take a few days more before Pevolca will decide to clear all alert levels as the present condition has to be prolonged.
- The 2 earthquakes which occurred today have NO volcanic origin
- There is still a minor harmonic tremor signal

Click on the picture to see all in full size

Update 28/12 - 13:50 UTC
- A new0.9 magnitude earthquake occurred at 11:42 at a depth of 12.3 km. Epicenter similar as the earlier quake, near Tacaron)

Update 28/12 - 11:23 UTC
The eruption stopped completely. There is NO longer a Harmonic Tremor signal indicating an ongoing eruption. As described below, we will see soon if the earthquakes pick up again or not. With such a flat tremor line and NO volcanic earthquakes, it is over for now. If the present situation goes on for a couple of days, we expect that the alert levels will be changed to green again.

Update 28/12 - 10:55 UTC
- At 06:52 a 0.8 magnitude earthquake occurred at a (unusual) depth of 9.3 km below Tacaron. This earthquake is certainly linked to the change in activity, although a direct link with the HT graph cannot be seen.
- We might arrive at a crucial phase in the survival of the eruption. If magma pressure is still strong enough without being able to erupt (collapse of the vent), the earthquakes have to pick up again. If this does not happen or if the HT does not come back, the eruption is halted.

Update 28/12 - 08:05 UTC
- 1 hour later it looks like we had a vent collapse as the tremor is getting gradually back again

Harmonic tremor in between 07:00 and 07:38 - image courtesy IGN

Update 28/12 - 07:05 UTC
- After some really turbulent harmonic tremor in between 05:00 and 06:00, harmonic tremor came almost to a halt. We do think that the eruption subsided a lot the last several days but that the current decrease has to be linked to a vent collapse. If this is the case the harmonic tremor will gradually pick up gain as the magma finds his way out.

Harmonic tremor in between 05:00 and 06:38 - image courtesy IGN

Update 27/12 - 23:30 UTC
- Harmonic tremor subsided a little after being at his max around 19:30
- a new M 1.8 earthquake occurred at 21:22 at a depth of 21 km. Click here for the epicenter

Harmonic tremor on December 27 from 00:00 until 23:00 UTC - image courtesy IGN

Update 27/12 - 23:30 UTC
Another exhibition of the El Hierro Art Gallery. Again a set of incredibly beautiful images taken from the Guardia Civil helicopters by the Involcan scientists yesterday morning. Click on the images to see the 10 pictures in full size.

Click on the picture to see them in full size

Update 27/12 - 18:30 UTC
- Harmonic tremor remains very strong
- Joke reported seeing many circles and a beautiful colorful palette. The water near the vent turned gray muddy.

Update 27/12 - 13:05 UTC
Another series of beautiful images from Joke Volta, showing the stain as seen from the hills above La Restinga and pictures from the fata morgana stain as seen on the webcam but photographed from the island

Click on the image to see all pictures in full size

Update 27/12 - 11:25 UTC
- The time lapse video from Julio del Castillo Vivero from the morning hours shows very well the fata morgana of the right side stain. The area looks like a vast stain similar than the color of the real stain. Thanks to Joke Volta we knew immediately that it was sun glare and not a stain. The fata morgana came around the same time of increased harmonic tremor.

Update 27/12 - 10:50 UTC
- NO new earthquakes
- Harmonic tremor grew steadily until now
- The Cabildo Telefonica La Restinga webcam shows what looks like a huge stain to the right of the image. We just called Joke Volta, who is in El Pinar at the moment, and she thinks that what we see is sun glare, not a stain.

Telefoninca Cabildo webcam capture on December 27 @ 10 40 - arrow at the right shows a mistery stain or sun glare


Harmonic tremor increase from midnight until 10:20 UTC - image courtesy IGN

Update 26/12 - 23:55 UTC
- NO new earthquakes since 00:29
- harmonic tremor has gradually increased until midnight
- we saw the helicopter from the Guardia Civil / Involcan hanging over the vent during the morning but no images or video have been published yet.
- the La Restinga village webcam is working again. The eruption webcam is off-line since December 22 ! We do not know (nor the AVCAN) what the reason is !

Update 26/12 - 12:19 UTC
Joke Volta morning pictures.

Update 26/12 - 10:29 UTC
- RTVC, the Canary Island Television broadcaster seems to have given up on their El Hierro eruption webcam operations . The webcam was no longer active since a couple of days. It hopefully remains on the mast as this webcam was by far the best from all available webcams. Nothing is 100% sure as long as the eruption did not stop completely. If the volcano goes again into a more active state (people following Etna eruptions do know what this means) the activity level can change in a couple of hours.

Update 26/12 - 10:12 UTC
- At 00:28 a very weak 0.6 earthquake occurred at a depth of 12.2 km. Click here for the epicenter location.
- Harmonic tremor lower medium as the last couple of days
- Recognizable stain from the ongoing eruption on the La Restinga village webcam (the other webcam has stopped working since a couple of days). The emitting vent can be recognized if you draw a vertical line from leftist entrance of the harbour to the horizon. There might be no emission line recognizable at the time of looking to the image, but extended watching will suddenly reveal the vent. This can also be seen very well on the time lapse videos from Julio del Castillo Vivero

Stain @ 10:08 December 26 on the La Restinga village webcam - image courtesy Cabildo / Telefonica webcam

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.