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Report on Pavlof (United States) — August 1986


Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, vol. 11, no. 8 (August 1986)
Managing Editor: Lindsay McClelland.

Pavlof (United States) Strombolian activity and ash emission ends

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 1986. Report on Pavlof (United States) (McClelland, L., ed.). Scientific Event Alert Network Bulletin, 11:8. Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.SEAN198608-312030


United States

55.417°N, 161.894°W; summit elev. 2493 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)

Airplane pilots frequently reported vapor and ash rising to 3.5-4 km altitude from Pavlof through 22 August (table 1). Sailors observed lava fountaining during the evening of 13 August, but airplane pilots generally do not fly close enough to the volcano to observe Strombolian explosions and most flights are in daylight when eruptive glow is unlikely to be evident. No pilot reports of activity were received between 22 August and 8 September, although there was some clear weather during that period. On 8 September, vigorous vapor emission was observed from Sand Point, 90 km E. During an overflight on 12 September, only minor steaming was observed.

Geological Summary. The most active volcano of the Aleutian arc, Pavlof is a Holocene stratovolcano that was constructed along a line of vents extending NE from the Emmons Lake caldera. Pavlof and Pavlof Sister to the NE form a dramatic pair of symmetrical, glacier-covered stratovolcanoes that overlook Pavlof and Volcano bays. Little Pavlof is a smaller cone on the SW flank of Pavlof volcano, near the rim of Emmons Lake caldera. Unlike Pavlof Sister, eruptions have frequently been reported from Pavlof, typically Strombolian to Vulcanian explosive eruptions from the summit vents and occasional lava flows. The active vents lie near the summit on the north and east sides. The largest recorded eruption took place in 1911, at the end of a 5-year-long eruptive episode, when a fissure opened on the N flank, ejecting large blocks and issuing lava flows.

Information Contacts: T. Miller, USGS Anchorage; J. Taber, LDGO; J. Reeder, ADGGS.