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Arenal Volcano Eruption - October, 2005



Arenal photos above: October 28, '05 @ 11h pm & 11h39 pm. The last 2 pictures on Oct. 29 @ 1h11 am & 4h11 pm. Daytime the lava is grey, nighttime it's red & glowing (like a cigarette). Because we are near the equator the sunrise is roughly at 5h30 am & sunset is at 5h30 pm all year long. Calendar of sunrises, sunsets and moon phases for Arenal Costa Rica (opens in a separate window)


Arenal pictures above: strombolian eruption on October 27, '05 @ 6h51 am. By comparing the height of the volcano to the size of the hot ash & gas cloud, I estimate the diameter at about 275 meters (275 m x 3.3 ft/m =  907 feet). Night shot with lava glowing through the clouds on Oct. 21 @ 3h05 am.

A big strombolian eruption occurred toward the Tabacon Hot Springs (Northwest of the crater in the R1 - Maximum Risk Zone, see the Arenal Volcano map) on October 16, '05 @ 1h07 am with bombs (some were the size of a car) thrown at more than 1,000 feet (340 meters) away from the crater. Luckily the eruption was not big enough to be life threatening as everybody was asleep @ the Tabacon Resort.

It's in black & white because it was shot with a small amateur video camera set on "night shot". Note that you need a tripod with this setting as the shutter speed is slow and it gets all blurry if handheld. I used a cheap & small aluminum table size tripod. Nothing was coming out of the volcano since 2 hours so I suspected that the pressure was accumulating and that an explosion would occur. I was taking pictures with my "real camera" but since I had with me an old video handycam, I set it up on a chair and let it run. Note that you should use your power adaptor unless you have a really good battery. My tape was only 1 hour long so when nothing special happened after the tape was finished, I just rewinded it and taped over it. Naturally the eruption occurred while I was changing the lens of my Nikon D70 so I don't have any good pictures of the event.

Photos above: October 16, '05 @ 9h39 pm. The rectangular light on the left side is the dam of Lake Arenal



Photos above: 13 October '05 all taken the same day @ 4h58 am (before sunrise @ 5h30 am), 8h40 am, 11h14 am (the bird in the clouds is a vulture), 7h28 pm (sunset @ 5h30 pm, there was a light rain but it was still possible to take some photos with the help of a rising half moon) & 7h54 pm (the rain stopped).


Photos above: 12 October '05 @ 4h51 pm (ash plume), 5h36 pm & 6h02 pm. 


Photos above: 5 October '05 @ 1h46 pm: on the right side of the first photo is a mass of semisolid lava the size of a truck bouncing on the steep slope of the volcano (50 meters or 150 feet between each black spots). 7 Oct. 3h20 & 3h50 pm: it was partly cloudy today but suddenly a huge column of smoke emerged, rising more than 1 km (3,500 feet). Note on the last picture that the heat of the volcano's plume punched a hole in the clouds letting the sun highlight the smoke.

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