Report on Chikurachki (Russia) — 13 March-19 March 2002
Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 13 March-19 March 2002
Managing Editor: Gari Mayberry
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2002. Report on Chikurachki (Russia). In: Mayberry, G (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 13 March-19 March 2002. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
50.324°N, 155.461°E; summit elev. 1781 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
Based on reports received from the town of Severo-Kurilsk, KVERT reported a continuation through 16 March of volcanism that began at Chikurachki on 25 January. On the 16th during 0700 to late evening ash fell in Podgorny settlement, ~20 km SE of the volcano. On a reconnaissance helicopter flight during 1100-1300, observers saw constant gas emissions and sustained ash explosions that rose 200 m above the volcano and extended more than 100 km SE.
Geologic Background. Chikurachki, the highest volcano on Paramushir Island in the northern Kuriles, is actually a relatively small cone constructed on a high Pleistocene volcanic edifice. Oxidized basaltic-to-andesitic scoria deposits covering the upper part of the young cone give it a distinctive red color. Frequent basaltic plinian eruptions have occurred during the Holocene. Lava flows from 1781-m-high Chikurachki reached the sea and form capes on the NW coast; several young lava flows also emerge from beneath the scoria blanket on the eastern flank. The Tatarinov group of six volcanic centers is located immediately to the south of Chikurachki, and the Lomonosov cinder cone group, the source of an early Holocene lava flow that reached the saddle between it and Fuss Peak to the west, lies at the southern end of the N-S-trending Chikurachki-Tatarinov complex. In contrast to the frequently active Chikurachki, the Tatarinov volcanoes are extensively modified by erosion and have a more complex structure. Tephrochronology gives evidence of only one eruption in historical time from Tatarinov, although its southern cone contains a sulfur-encrusted crater with fumaroles that were active along the margin of a crater lake until 1959.