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Altar volcano

caldera 5321 m / 17,457 ft
Ecuador, -1.67°S / -78.42°W
Current status: (probably) extinct (0 out of 5)
Altar volcano books
Typical eruption style: explosive
Altar volcano eruptions: ca. 2 million years ago
landslide-caused tsunami in 2000
uncertain reports from 1460 AD No recent earthquakes
TimeMag. / DepthDistanceLocation
El Altar is an extinct stratovolcano on the western side of Sangay National Park in Ecuador, 170 km south of Quito. Altar was last active about 2 million years ago and contains a caldera open to the west, which contains a lake.
A large rockslide caused fatalities in 2000. On 13 October 2000, a large block of andesitic breccia with a volumne of ca. 1.5 million m3 rock broke off from near the summit and slid 900 m down into a caldera lake. This impact caused a 50 m high tsunami which overflowed the caldera and produced a lahar, that killed 13 people

Background:

Inca legends report that the top of Altar collapsed after seven years of activity in about 1460, but the caldera is considered to be much older than this by geologists. 9 major peaks over 5,000 metres (16,400 ft) form a horseshoe-shaped ridge about 3 km across, surrounding a central basin that contains a crater lake at about 4,200 m (13,800 ft), known as Laguna Collanes or Laguna Amarilla.
Sources:
- wikipedia
- Hall, Minard L. (1977). "El Volcanismo en el Ecuador". Sección Nacional del Ecuador. p. 120 pp
- Smithsonian / GVP additonal reports for Altar


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