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Valles Caldera volcanoThe 22-km-wide Valles caldera was formed by 2 very large explosive eruptions 1.7 and 1.2 million years ago. Post caldera eruptions formed Redondo Peak dome inside the caldera.
The last eruptions of the caldera happened 50,000-60,000 years ago, depositing rhyolite ignimbrite deposits.
The caldera is still considered potentially active and has an active geothermal system with hot springs and fumaroles.
Background:The first of the 2 large volume eruptions that created the caldera occurred about 1.7 million years ago and deposited the widespread Bandelier Tuff ignimbrite plateaus on all sides of the caldera. The eruption resulted in the formation of most of the present-day Valles caldera, including the Toledo embayment at the NE side.
The second, similar eruption occurred about 1.2 million years ago. Large pyroclastic flows emplaced the Tshirege ignimbrite.
Post-caldera volcanism has included the emplacement of multiple ring-fracture lava domes and uplift of the caldera floor, forming the Redondo Peak resurgent dome. The El Cajete Pumice, Battleship Rock Ignimbrite, Banco Bonito Rhyolite, and the VC-1 Rhyolite were emplaced during the youngest eruption of Valles caldera, about 50,000-60,000 years ago.