About two hours after an earthquake of a M3.1 earthquake happened near Virginia City, Montana (that USGS later down to a M2.8) 17:30:31 (UTC), Steamboat geyser erupted again at about 19:37 UTC lasting for over an hour with its eruption and then steam venting. You can see it shook the ground in the image below.
Large earthquakes from around the world are also known to shake the magma caldera at Yellowstone. There was a M6.1 earthquake 93km E of Ozernovskiy, Russia at 1:40:08 UTC. On July 6, 2018
One of the last eruptions June 15 was witnessed throwing rocks from steamboat geyser the size of baseballs.
— Skolbird (@skolbird) July 7, 2018
According to officials, the activity is spurred on by a large magma field sitting just below the park that seem to be going through some changes.
“The geysering is reflecting processes that are occurring in the shallowest part of the system — tens to perhaps a few hundreds of meters deep, whereas the magmatic system starts about 3 miles down,” Poland wrote. “Geysers are supposed to erupt, and so what we’re seeing is normal behavior.”
Steamboat geyser is in an area of the park called the Norris Geyser Basin, known to be the hottest and most changeable thermal area in Yellowstone and currently the highest ground uplift and underground melt.
“Most of the 2018 eruptions occurred at night or during times when the area was closed to visitors,” the statement continued. “On June 4, however, the geyser put on a show starting at about 9 a.m. And USGS scientists were on site to witness the spectacle.”
There are phases to an eruption of the geyser.
“The eruption began with what is called the water-phase,” said the USGS. “On this particular day, the water-phase lasted for around 30 minutes. Hot, silica-rich water erupted to heights beyond 200 feet.”
Scientists said the “roar” was just as impressive as the visual spectacle. “Every once in a while, rocks (some baseball sized) were ejected with the water to astonishing heights,” the statement continued.
“After 30 minutes, Steamboat entered into what is called the steam-phase,” said officials. “Here, the eruption is dominated by the high-speed ejection of steam with a sound that reminds one of a jet engine. This phase can last for hours to days.”
Before this year– Steamboat erupted ten times in nearly thirty years.
In 2018, Steamboat Geyser entered a much more active period with eleven eruptions recorded between March 15th and July 6th.
To keep track of the geysering, we will keep an updated count of Steamboat water eruptions on this page. So far in 2018, Steamboat has erupted 11 times (all times below are local):
March 15, 2018 – (3 years 193 days)
April 19, 2018 – (35 days)
April 27, 2018 – (8 days)
May 4, 2018 – (7 days)
May 13, 2018 – (9 days)
May 19, 2018 – (6 days)
May 27, 2018 – (8 days)
June 4, 2018 – (8 days)
June 11, 2018 – (7 days)
June 15, 2018 – (4 days)
July 6, 2018 – (21 days). This is the first eruption since the June-July 2018 disturbance of the Norris Geyser Basin.
About 90 minutes after eruption, increased discharge can often be seen at the Tantalus stream gage.
Steamboat geyser at Yellowstone National Park from the air pic.twitter.com/bK0feWxPRT
— Darrell Ehrlick (@DarrellEhrlick) July 5, 2018
Mary Greeley News