Yellowstone National Park – Fears over Earthquake "Swarm"


Steam rises from a cone in  Yellowstone National Park

Steam rises from a cone in Yellowstone National Park

Like millions of tourists who visit Yellowstone National Park each year, the threat of earthquakes doesn’t discourage me from enjoying Yellowstone’s amazing thermal features.


Foreboding discussions on late night radio describe a Yellowstone volcanic eruption as apocalyptic. Living here in Northwest Montana approximately 400 miles from the park makes this all the more intriguing. To simply suggest that we would experience the effects of a major volcanic explosion would be an understatement. It would be TEOTWAWKI.

Yellowstone National Park sits on one of the largest super volcanoes in the world and lately has been experiencing a “swarm” of earthquake activity. More than 500 earthquakes have been recorded around the area of Yellowstone Lake within the last 10 days. Considered small by experts, these earthquakes register around 3.9 in magnitude.

Each year, Yellowstone records around 1,000 to 3,000 earthquakes. What makes this recent swarm of quakes newsworthy is the number of quakes within such a short period of time and that they may cause changes to the caldera. Experts say there is no cause for concern as volcanic alert level is normal and that there are no indications of magma activity.

Have a prediction? Will Yellowstone erupt any time soon?

Que Sera, Sera

(This article refers to earthquake activity in and around January 2009)

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