LAVA UPDATE! Thursday, March 2, 7:00 am – Kalapana & Pu‘u ‘O‘o overflight

Kilauea continues to erupt from Pu‘u ‘O‘o, the vent on its east rift zone, sending molten lava downslope, via a network of tubes to the Kamokuna ocean entry. This morning, a low bank of clouds hung over Pu‘u ‘O‘o, and while it prevented us from getting any clear images, a bit of glow was faintly visible, indicating that the lava pond was still there. The most notable change on the flow field was a new breakout approximately 1/2 mile upslope of the most recent (2 weeks ago) that had sent several rivers flowing over Pulama Pali. This new one is at least 1/4 mile long and is quite active, flowing on east side of the main tube at the present time. Meanwhile, at the base of the pali, very little fresh activity was observed, just a couple residual nosebleed breakouts. The 3 week old lobe is still advancing across the coastal plain, its distal tip approximately 1/4 mile mauka of the emergency access road. (still hoping for a new entry point!) And lastly, the firehose continues to rage on, albeit at a lower volume than before, but still creating impressive littoral explosions. The cliffside remains extremely unstable and continues to slowly erode away, as the indentation in the coastline where the lava effuses from is becoming more pronounced.  For those visitors on the ground, please heed all safety warnings put out by the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and the USGS!

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A large new breakout occurred late yesterday, approximately a mile above Pulama Pali, flowing east of the main lava tube. It was roughly 1/4 mile long at the time of our overflight. Rising gases in the top left of the frame demarks the path of main tube.
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A view of the new breakout from 600 feet above it, showing the source in the lower right corner, and its distal tip in the upper left, while some of its volume is flowing over the existing path of the main lava tube (upper middle of the frame). Rising gases demark the location of the main tube. lol… Got a little too high, so the clouds interfered with the view!
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The firehose continues to effuse lava directly into the sea, creating impressive littoral explosions and a huge steam plume.
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The leading edge of the new breakout was quite vigorous with these rivers of lava advancing toward Pulama Pali.
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A view from directly above the leading edge of the new breakout as it advances toward Pulama Pali. The Kamokuna ocean entry plume is visible in the upper right of the frame.

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