Hawai'i, Kilauea in April 2005

Pulama pali and the Pu`u`O`o Vent

M.Rietze, T.Boeckel, R. Roscoe



 Ocean entries of the lava (6-7th of April), part 1


Maps of the region


Source: The HVO - Site

According to the informations received by the USGS, HVO, the Pu`u`O`o-Kupaianaha eruption of the Kilauea in its 55th eruptive episode has now the duration of 22 years. This episode ranks as the most voluminous outpouring of lava on the volcano's east rift zone since the past five centuries.

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Entrance of the lava in the Pacific Ocean in the Highcastle area.

In May 2002, a new vent opened on the west side. On the western margin of the flow field the largest forest fire in the park since 15 years was sparkling off. These flows reached the ocean near the end of the 'Chain of Crater Road' in July.

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Entrance of the lava in the Pacific Ocean in the Highcastle area.

Ever since, you can observe a continuous lava flow at the south flanks of the Pulama Pali region reaching the Kupaianaha coastal line via reticulated tubes belonging to a big subterrain system. Depending on the intensity, litoral eruptions can be discovered by executing a fiery show according to the principe of vulcanism in a small format. Thereby sea water is entering the lava filled tubes and the resulting steam pressure can burst massive coastal-lines or lava banks.

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 The aesthetic hawaiian way of  land reclamation.

As you can discover on the upper photos, the ocean entries do appear in an indiscribeable beautiness and aesthetic. Live to see this tryst between the lava and the sea you can recieve the impression that the archaic volcanic power has nothing to subtend to the eternal power of the ocean. Five meter high waves are toying with the lava ropes’  from 3 up to 40 centimetre, which 'drop' down from a height of 4 meter until they decline on the ground of the ocean under a loud fizzling. Hidden behind this grothesque hawaiian way of  land reclamation a continous process takes place expanding the  hawaiian archipelago since the date of origin.


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Already in September 2002, 2.3 km3 of lava had covered 110 km2 and added 220 hectares to Kilauea's southern shore. In this process, lava flows destroyed nearly 200 structures,13 km of the highway and the small coast town of Kalapana are covered by lava layers up to a thickness of 25 meters.(Informations by USGS,HVO)

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 ©2005 photos & text by Th. Boeckel (tb), photos by Martin Rietze (mr)

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