Jordan Craters

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  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 43.147°N
  • 117.46°W

  • 1473 m
    4831 ft

  • 322190
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit

  • Volcano

The Global Volcanism Program has no activity reports for Jordan Craters.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Weekly Reports available for Jordan Craters.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Bulletin Reports available for Jordan Craters.

Volcano Types

Volcanic field

Tectonic Setting

Rift zone
Continental crust (> 25 km)

Rock Types

Basalt / Picro-Basalt


Within 5 km
Within 10 km
Within 30 km
Within 100 km

Geological Summary

Jordan Craters volcanic field consists of well-preserved basaltic lava flows and scoria cones that are the youngest and northernmost of a group of three Quaternary lava fields covering an area of 250 sq km in SE Oregon. The Pleistocene 1473-m-high Clarks Butte shield volcano and Rocky Butte (Lava Butte) lava fields lie to the south, along the trend of regional Basin and Range faulting. Jordan Craters lie on the Owyhee-Oregon plateau at the SE end of a series of widely scattered young volcanic fields extending SE from Bend, Oregon. Coffeepot Crater at the NW end of the lava field was the source about 3200 years ago or later of one of Oregon's youngest lava flows, which covered 75 sq km with 1.6 cu km of olivine-basaltic pahoehoe. The flows dammed local drainages, forming the two small Upper and Lower Cow Lakes at the SE end of the lava field. Jordan Craters is renowned for its excellent exposures of a wide variety of youthful lava-flow features and has similarities to Holocene basaltic flows of Idaho's Snake River Plain to the east.

Eruptive History

Summary of Holocene eruption dates and Volcanic Explosivity Indices (VEI).

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
1250 BCE (after) Unknown Confirmed 2 Radiocarbon (uncorrected) Coffeepot Crater

This compilation of synonyms and subsidiary features may not be comprehensive. Features are organized into four major categories: Cones, Craters, Domes, and Thermal Features. Synonyms of features appear indented below the primary name. In some cases additional feature type, elevation, or location details are provided.


Cow Lakes Lava Field


Feature Name Feature Type Elevation Latitude Longitude
Coffeepot Crater Crater 1426 m 43° 9' 0" N 117° 28' 0" W

Photo Gallery

Coffeepot Crater (left center) was the source of voluminous basaltic lava flows in the Jordan Craters volcanic field of SE Oregon. The roughly 200-m-wide crater lies at the NW end of the 1.6 cu km lava field, which covers a roughly rectangular area about 8 km wide. A WSW-ENE-trending line of spatter cones in the right foreground extends towards the crater. The vent of the isolated lava field is reached by a 42-km-long gravel road. The roughly 3200-year-old lava field forms one of Oregon's youngest lava flows.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 2002 (Smithsonian Institution).


The following references have all been used during the compilation of data for this volcano, it is not a comprehensive bibliography. Discussion of another volcano or eruption (sometimes far from the one that is the subject of the manuscript) may produce a citation that is not at all apparent from the title.

Cascades Volcano Observatory, 2013-. Young volcanoes in WA, OR & ID.

Chitwood L A, 1994. Inflated basaltic lava--examples of processes and landforms from central and southeast Oregon. Oregon Geol, 56: 11-21.

Hart W K, Mertzman S A, 1983. Late Cenozoic stratigraphy of the Jordan Valley area, southeastern Oregon. Oregon Geol, 45: 15-19.

IAVCEI, 1973-80. Post-Miocene Volcanoes of the World. IAVCEI Data Sheets, Rome: Internatl Assoc Volc Chemistry Earth's Interior..

Otto B R, Hutchison D A, 1977. The geology of the Jordan Craters, Malhuer County, Oregon. Ore Bin, 39: 125-140.

Russell J K, Nicholls J, 1987. Early crystallization history of alkali olivine basalts, Diamond Craters, Oregon. Geochim Cosmochim Acta, 51: 143-154.

Smith R L, Shaw H R, 1975. Igneous-related geothermal systems. U S Geol Surv Circ, 726: 58-83.

Affiliated Databases

Large Eruptions of Jordan Craters Information about large Quaternary eruptions (VEI >= 4) is cataloged in the Large Magnitude Explosive Volcanic Eruptions (LaMEVE) database of the Volcano Global Risk Identification and Analysis Project (VOGRIPA).
WOVOdat WOVOdat is a database of volcanic unrest; instrumentally and visually recorded changes in seismicity, ground deformation, gas emission, and other parameters from their normal baselines. It is sponsored by the World Organization of Volcano Observatories (WOVO) and presently hosted at the Earth Observatory of Singapore.
EarthChem EarthChem develops and maintains databases, software, and services that support the preservation, discovery, access and analysis of geochemical data, and facilitate their integration with the broad array of other available earth science parameters. EarthChem is operated by a joint team of disciplinary scientists, data scientists, data managers and information technology developers who are part of the NSF-funded data facility Integrated Earth Data Applications (IEDA). IEDA is a collaborative effort of EarthChem and the Marine Geoscience Data System (MGDS).
Smithsonian Collections Search the Smithsonian's NMNH Department of Mineral Sciences collections database. Go to the "Search Rocks and Ores" tab and use the Volcano Name drop-down to find samples.