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El Valle

Photo of this volcano
  • Panama
  • México and Central America
  • Stratovolcano
  • Unknown - Evidence Uncertain
  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 8.58°N
  • 80.17°W

  • 1185 m
    3888 ft

  • 346030
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

  • Volcano
    Number

The Global Volcanism Program has no activity reports for El Valle.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Weekly Reports available for El Valle.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Bulletin Reports available for El Valle.

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.

Eruptive History

The Global Volcanism Program is not aware of any Holocene eruptions from El Valle. If this volcano has had large eruptions (VEI >= 4) prior to 10,000 years ago, information might be found on the El Valle page in the LaMEVE (Large Magnitude Explosive Volcanic Eruptions) database, a part of the Volcano Global Risk Identification and Analysis Project (VOGRIPA).

Deformation History

There is no Deformation History data available for El Valle.

Emission History

There is no Emissions History data available for El Valle.

Photo Gallery

The broad irregular ridge on the horizon NE of the Pacific coastal plain is El Valle volcano in Panama. El Valle de Antón caldera is within the volcanic complex and post-caldera lava domes can be seen in the center of the horizon. Late-Pleistocene Plinian eruptions from El Valle have produced pyroclastic flows that reached the coast. Tertiary volcanic centers surround the caldera complex.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
An eroded pyroclastic flow deposit extends to the SE from El Valle caldera. Pyroclastic flows from phreatomagmatic eruptions about 50,000 to 34,000 years ago traveled more than 25 km to the Pacific coast of Panamá and their deposits cover the southern and eastern flanks of the volcano.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
El Valle de Antón caldera (left) is seen here where a late-Pleistocene lake occupied the caldera floor and persisted until it drained sometime during the Holocene. Cerro Cara Iguana (upper left) on the caldera rim contains El Hato pyroclastic flow deposits from caldera formation about 1.1-1.3 million years ago. A crater just out of view outside the SW caldera rim at the right was the inferred source of the India Dormida ignimbrite that was erupted about 220,000 years ago.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
The town of El Valle occupies the El Valle de Antón caldera floor. This view looks across the 6-km-wide caldera from La India Dormida on the western rim. A lake once covered the caldera floor, contributing to large phreatoplinian eruptions during the late Pleistocene. At the far-left is Cerro Caracoral, the easternmost of three lava domes along the northern caldera margin. More recent Plinian eruptions originated from the Mata Ahogado crater, east of the caldera rim.

Photo by Paul Kimberly, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
The El Valle de Antón SW caldera rim reaches 300 m above the caldera floor. The caldera formed during major explosive eruptions about 1.1-1.3 million years ago. A former caldera lake contributed to phreatomagmatic and phreatic eruptions that continued into the late Pleistocene. More than 90 m of lake sediments were deposited on the caldera floor prior to draining of the lake.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
The post-caldera Cerro Pajita, Cerro Gaital, and Cerro Caracoral lava domes (seen left to right from La India Dormida on the western caldera rim) formed along an E-W trend about 900,000 years ago. The easternmost dome is Cerro Caracoral. Gabbro xenoliths are common in the central dome, Cerro Gaital. The Río Mar pyroclastic flows were produced about 40,000-50,000 years ago from a vent on the caldera floor between the Gaital and Pajita domes.

Photo by Paul Kimberly, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
This drill rig on the floor of El Valle de Antón caldera is part of a major geothermal exploration program at El Valle volcano. In the background to the north is Cerro Gaital, the highest of three post-caldera lava domes along the northern caldera rim.

Photo by Paul Kimberly, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
La India Dormida is a portion of the western rim of El Valle de Antón caldera. A hiking trail leads to the saddle (left) at the base (left) and then to its summit, which rises 300 m above the caldera floor. The caldera wall exposes Tertiary Iguana pyroclastic flow deposits that are overlain by the Tertiary Piedra lava flow.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
These headlands along the Pacific coast south of El Valle volcano consist of ignimbrite deposits from late Pleistocene eruptions. The latest Plinian eruption, about 34,000 years ago, produced pyroclastic flows that reached as far as 25 km from the volcano and emplaced deposits along its southern and eastern flanks.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
Cliffs along the southern coast of Panamá, west of Panama City, expose ignimbrite deposits from El Valle volcano.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
Three lava domes formed along the northern margin of the youngest of El Valle caldera, 80 km SW of Panama City. Cerro Pajita (left), Cerro Gaital (center), and Cerro Caracoral (right) rise above the caldera floor in this view from the SW caldera rim. The 6-km-wide El Valle de Antón caldera formed about 1 million years ago.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution).
GVP Map Holdings

The maps shown below have been scanned from the GVP map archives and include the volcano on this page. Clicking on the small images will load the full 300 dpi map. Very small-scale maps (such as world maps) are not included. The maps database originated over 30 years ago, but was only recently updated and connected to our main database. We welcome users to tell us if they see incorrect information or other problems with the maps; please use the Contact GVP link at the bottom of the page to send us email.


Title: Santiago
Publisher: Instituto Geografico Nacional "Tommy Guardia"
Country: Panama
Year: 1998
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:250,000
Map of Santiago

Title: Chitre
Publisher: Instituto Geografico Nacional "Tommy Guardia"
Country: Panama
Year: 1998
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:250,000
Map of Chitre

Title: Panama (Sur)
Publisher: Instituto Geografico Nacional "Tommy Guardia"
Country: Panama
Year: 1997
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:250,000
Map of Panama (Sur)

Title: Colombia, Panama, Venezuela
Publisher: DMA Aerospace Center
Country: Colombia, Panama
Year: 1988
Series: ONC
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:1,000,000
Map of Colombia, Panama, Venezuela

Title: West Indies: The Making of America
Publisher: National Geographic Society
Country: W Indies
Year: 1987
Series: National Geographic
Map Type: Geographic
Scale: 1:4,395
Map of West Indies: The Making of America

Title: Bath of Gulf of Mexico & Caribbean Sea
Publisher: AAPG, Williams & Heintz Map Corp.
Country: US/ C.Am/ S.Am
Year: 1984
Map Type: Bathymetric
Scale: 1:3,289
Map of Bath of Gulf of Mexico & Caribbean Sea

Title: Panama
Country: Panama C-Am
Year: 1981
Map Type: Geographic
Scale: 1:3,200
Map of Panama

Title: Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Venezuela
Publisher: DMA Aerospace Center
Country: S America
Year: 1981
Series: ONC
Map Type: Navigation
Scale: 1:1,000,000
Map of Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Venezuela

Title: Panama
Publisher: US Army Map Service
Country: Panama
Year: 1959
Series: AMS 1301
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:1,000,000
Map of Panama
Smithsonian Sample Collections Database

There are no samples for El Valle in the Smithsonian's NMNH Department of Mineral Sciences Rock and Ore collection.

External Sites