February 22, 2019
Some of Yellowstone’s geysers have been more active lately reigniting fears that the massive supervolcano will erupt. The sudden bursts of steaming hot water highlight the dramatic nature of Yellowstone while reminding us we are all at the caldera’s mercy.
While average people seemed concerned, geologists seemed excited and thrilled when Yellowstone’s steamboat geyser began erupting again in 2018. It has been erupting as often as once a week since last March, according to National Geographic,and scientists continue to say the volatile activity is not a sign of an imminent eruption. The Yellowstone Volcano Observatory reported that Steamboat has now set a record by erupting a whopping 32 times in 2018, a personal best for the geyser for a single calendar year. It’s the world’s tallest active geyser, and at the best of times, it can shoot hot water 300 feet into the air. However, it isn’t just the Steamboat Geyser that has been concerning people.
Ear Spring Geyser, for example, has been almost since 1957, but it erupted spectacularly a few months back and sprayed human garbage from the 1930s all over the national park. But scientists insist this doesn’t mean an eruption is pending. “It’s a good lesson in how geysers actually work,” said Michael Poland, the scientist-in-charge at Yellowstone Volcano Observatory. “As soon as you start to recognize a pattern [in a geyser’s eruption], it changes.”
“As [far as] geysers go, Steamboat is sort of typical in terms of having these sporadic, unpredictable eruptions,” Poland notes. “But because it’s this really tall geyser and it has this name recognition, it makes it that much more interesting.” But again, it’s not just Steamboat Geyser that has people concerned. “But back in 2007 to 2008, Giant [geyser] went bananas,” Poland says. “It erupted many,…