May 17, 2010 – Mt. St. Helens

Mt. St. Helens

Mt. St. Helens

Monday, May 17, 2010

Welcome back everyone, from the best weekend EVER! And by best, I mean “most recent”. My own weekend wasn’t any better than, say, any other weekend, but it’s certainly fresher in my mind. I expect that your experience was similar.

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, tomorrow is the 30-year anniversary of the explosion of Mt. St. Helens, here in Washington state. Not too much was known about the peculiar dynamics of a volcanic explosion back then, and only a little bit more is known now. (And Louisiana’s governor Bobby Jindal would like to keep it that way.) But the last 30 years have provided a fantastic change to explore what happens afterward. I’ve covered all of this ground before (so did Mt. St. Helens – ha!), so blah blah whatever, go back and read one of those other entries if you’re interested.

Even the day after the explosion, the mountain started rebuilding itself. The rate at which it has been doing so of course varies over time, but just a few years ago the rate dramatically increased, leading some to suspect that it may go boom again. That of course didn’t happen, but it did spew a bunch of smoke and ash for awhile, so that was fun. Today’s picture is a view into the crater, at the new lava dome that’s been forming. Presumably this will eventually make the mountain resemble sometime like its former self, after it grows a bunch more. That’s sort of what these volcanoes do, as it turns out.

This picture came about via a nice big (and cheap!) telephoto lens, and a decent amount of post-processing to filter through the haze that was in the air that day. (And by “a decent amount of post-processing”, I mean I hit the “I’m feeling lucky” button in Picasa. I almost broke a sweat!) It’s pretty crazy to think that, even during the slower times, a couple dump-truck-loads worth of stuff is being added to the cone every single day. Or at least I think I remember reading that somewhere. God I hope nobody’s using this blog as a reference for their high school science homework. Just about every “fact” that I’ve mentioned is somewhere between loosely researched and poorly documented, and completely made up. So, on that note…

Notes: Canon EOS Rebel XT, Quantaray 70-300mm lens. 1/800s, f/8.0, ISO 100. Focal length: 227mm.

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One Comment

  1. avatar
    Marie June 6, 2010

    the picture is so vivid

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