Guallatiri

Photo of this volcano
Google Earth icon
  Google Earth Placemark
  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 18.42°S
  • 69.092°W

  • 6071 m
    19913 ft

  • 355020
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

  • Volcano
    Number

Most Recent Bulletin Report: July 1996 (BGVN 21:07)


Quiet emission of vapor from summit crater and S flank fumaroles

On 19 and 20 July, quiet emissions and occasional denser puffs of white vapor from the summit crater were observed. A zone of fumaroles on the S flank of the volcano, free of snow and ~400 m below the summit, also released a similar amount of vapor as that from the summit crater.

Guallatiri, one of N Chile's most active volcanoes, is a symmetrical ice-clad volcano at the S end of the Nevados de Quimsachata volcano group.

Information Contacts: J. Sesiano, Département de Minéralogie, Université de Genève, 13 rue des Maraîchers, 1121 Genève 4, Switzerland.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Weekly Reports available for Guallatiri.

Index of Bulletin Reports


Reports are organized chronologically and indexed below by Month/Year (Publication Volume:Number), and include a one-line summary. Click on the index link or scroll down to read the reports.

11/1985 (SEAN 10:11) Vapor plumes at 1-minute intervals

12/1987 (SEAN 12:12) Increased fumarolic activity; distant 1985 observation probably of this volcano

05/1991 (BGVN 16:05) Strong fumarolic activity

07/1996 (BGVN 21:07) Quiet emission of vapor from summit crater and S flank fumaroles




Bulletin Reports

All information contained in these reports is preliminary and subject to change.


11/1985 (SEAN 10:11) Vapor plumes at 1-minute intervals

[This activity was initially attributed to Acotango in the Quimsachata Volcano Group. It is now thought to have originated from Guallatiri, further along the same line of sight as Acotango (figure 1). Investigation of Acotango volcano in 1987, by Oscar González-Ferrán, revealed no evidence of a recent eruption.]

Figure 1. Sketch map of the Nevados de Quimsachata area. Volcano names are in large type, town names in smaller type. Roads are indicated by pairs of dashed lines. Contour interval is 500 m. Robert Koeppen's line of sight fro his observation point near Sajama, Bolivia, is shown by a dashed line. The border between Chile and Bolivia is not shown, but follows the crest of the Andes.

The quoted material is a report from Robert Koeppen. "On 1 December at 0750, Robert Koeppen (USGS), Walter West (U. S. Embassy, La Paz, Bolivia), and Jaime Jauregui (Geological Survey of Bolivia) observed steam plumes erupting from a source near the crest of Nevados de Quimsachata. The observation was made from a point about 25 km to the NNE, near the W base of Volcán Nevado Sajama, Bolivia. Visibility was initially excellent, but within about 45 minutes cloud cover completely obscured the mountain's summit. Intervening peaks prevented exact determination of the vent, but the eruption appeared to originate from Cerro Acotango, either from the main summit or possibly immediately to the NW. If the eruption plume came from Volcán Guallatiri, the next possible source area along the line of sight, then it would represent a significantly larger eruption (figure 1).

"The eruptions produced white, billowing clouds that rose vertically above the Quimsachata crest, perhaps about 500 m, then drifted W. The eruptions occurred in episodic bursts, and, based on first sightings of the plumes, at intervals ranging from 45-75 seconds. One large plume drifted more NW and appeared to trail a curtain, possibly of ash fallout. Several bursts seemed particularly vigorous and appeared to consist of several plumes coalescing at higher levels."

Chilean forest service personnel based near Lago Chungara, roughly 20 km to the NW, reported that they had seen no activity, but visibilities in the area are frequently poor.

No eruptions are known in historic time from Cerro Acotango, but Yoshio Katsui and Oscar González-Ferrán (1968) mapped it as Holocene. Four historic eruptions bave been reported from Guallatiri, most recently in December 1960. Chilean geologists note that fumarolic activity from Guallatiri is apparently continuous but less vigorous than the plume emission observed 1 December.

Reference. Katsui, Y., and González-Ferrán, O., 1968, Geología del area neovolcánica de los Nevados de Payachata: Publicaciones del Instituto de Geología, Universidad de Chile, no. 29, 161 p.

Information Contacts: R. Koeppen, USGS, Reston, VA; L. López E., Univ. de Chile, Santiago.
Download or Cite this Report

12/1987 (SEAN 12:12) Increased fumarolic activity; distant 1985 observation probably of this volcano

"During a reconaissance in the Nevados de Pachayata/Nevados de Quimsachata region between 2 and 5 December, vigorous fumarolic activity was observed at Guallatiri. The activity was much more intense than in previous years and the emissions were more frequent, occurring about every 30 minutes. Whitish-yellow columns rose 300-500 m above the volcano's central dacitic dome. Nearby secondary fumaroles extended from the principal vent onto the W part of the volcano (figure 2).

Figure 2. Sketch map of Guallatiri by O. González-Ferrán, showing fumaroles active on 3 December 1987.

"In December 1985, Robert Koeppen had observed (from the base of Sajama volcano 25 km to the NE) strong fumaroles that appeared to be from Acotango. During the 1987 reconaissance, the volcanoes Capurata, Acotango, and Humarata did not show any signs of activity; their craters were covered with ice and clean snow. Consequently, we believe that the activity observed by Koeppen was not from Acotango, but from Guallatiri [farther along Koeppen's line of sight from Sajama; see map in 10:11], which recently has notably increased its activity."

Information Contacts: O. González-Ferrán, Univ de Chile.
Download or Cite this Report

05/1991 (BGVN 16:05) Strong fumarolic activity

Two strongly active zones of fumaroles were observed during a summit visit on 2 November 1990. The more intense fumaroles, 80 m below the . . . summit, produced a plume 200 m high accompanied by a jet-engine noise. Some boiling mud pools were also seen. The second zone, on the S side of the volcano at ~3,000 m elev, contained about 10 fumaroles. The volcano was otherwise snow-covered.

Information Contacts: P. Vetsch and R. Haubrichs, SVG, Switzerland.
Download or Cite this Report

07/1996 (BGVN 21:07) Quiet emission of vapor from summit crater and S flank fumaroles

On 19 and 20 July, quiet emissions and occasional denser puffs of white vapor from the summit crater were observed. A zone of fumaroles on the S flank of the volcano, free of snow and ~400 m below the summit, also released a similar amount of vapor as that from the summit crater.

Guallatiri, one of N Chile's most active volcanoes, is a symmetrical ice-clad volcano at the S end of the Nevados de Quimsachata volcano group.

Information Contacts: J. Sesiano, Département de Minéralogie, Université de Genève, 13 rue des Maraîchers, 1121 Genève 4, Switzerland.
Download or Cite this Report

One of northern Chile's most active volcanoes, Volcán Guallatiri is a symmetrical ice-clad stratovolcano at the SW end of the Nevados de Quimsachata volcano group. The 6071-m-high Guallatiri lies just west of the border with Bolivia and is capped by a central dacitic dome or lava complex, with the active vent situated at its southern side. Thick lava flows are prominent on the lower northern and western flanks of the andesitic-to-rhyolitic volcano. Minor explosive eruptions have been reported from Guallatiri since the beginning of the 19th century. Intense fumarolic activity with "jet-like" noises continues, and numerous solfataras extend more than 300 m down the west flank.

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

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
[ 1985 Dec 1 ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    
1960 Dec 2 Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1959 Jul 15 ± 5 days Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1913 Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
[ 1908 ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain    
1825 ± 25 years Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations

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.


Synonyms

Huallatire | Punata | Huallatiri
One of northern Chile's most active volcanoes, Volcán Guallatiri (right) is a symmetrical ice-clad stratovolcano at the SW end of the Nevados de Quimsachata volcano group. This view from the west includes three other peaks of the Nevados de Quimsachata group at the extreme left, Pleistocene Volcán Humarata and Pleistocene-to-Holocene Volcán Acotango and Capurata volcano (center). Minor explosive eruptions have occurred since the beginning of the 19th century from 6071-m-high Guallatiri volcano.

Photo by Hugo Moreno (University of Chile).
A vigorous steam plume rises from the summit ridge of Volcán Guallatiri, one of northern Chile's most active volcanoes. The ice-clad stratovolcano is seen here from the north and lies at the SW end of the Nevados de Quimsachata volcano group. The 6071-m-high Guallatiri is capped by a central dacitic dome or lava complex, with the active vent situated at its southern side. Minor explosive eruptions have been reported from Guallatiri since the beginning of the 19th century, and intense fumarolic activity continues.

Photo by Oscar González-Ferrán (University of Chile).
This prominent fumarole is located in the summit region of Guallatiri volcano. The vigorous fumarole lies 30 m below the summit on the western side and produces a very audible "jet-like" noise. Many solfataras are located along a 300 m section of the upper west flank of the volcano, and another five fumaroles are located on the south side of the central cone.

Photo by Sergio Kunstmann-Z (courtesy of Oscar González-Ferrán, University of Chile).
Volcán Guallatiri rises to the SSE beyond Laguna Chungará, and steam rises from a prominent fumarole near its summit. The symmetrical ice-clad stratovolcano lies at the SW end of the Nevados de Quimsachata volcano group just west of the border with Bolivia and is capped by a central dacitic dome or lava complex. Thick lava flows can be seen on its lower northern and western flanks. Minor explosive eruptions have been reported from Guallatiri since the beginning of the 19th century, and intense fumarolic activity continues.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 2004 (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.

Casertano L, 1963a. Chilean Continent. Catalog of Active Volcanoes of the World and Solfatara Fields, Rome: IAVCEI, 15: 1-55.

de Silva S L, Francis P W, 1991. Volcanoes of the Central Andes. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 216 p.

Gonzalez-Ferran O, 1995. Volcanes de Chile. Santiago: Instituto Geografico Militar, 635 p.

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

Moreno H, 1985. . (pers. comm.).

Volcano Types

Stratovolcano
Lava dome(s)

Tectonic Setting

Subduction zone
Continental crust (> 25 km)

Rock Types

Major
Andesite / Basaltic Andesite
Dacite
Rhyolite

Population

Within 5 km
Within 10 km
Within 30 km
Within 100 km
0
63
2,290
45,906

Affiliated Databases

Large Eruptions of Guallatiri 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.