Hijiori volcano

caldera 516 m / 1,693 ft
Honshu, Japan, 38.61°N / 140.18°E
Current status: normal or dormant (1 out of 5)

Hijiori volcano is a caldera about 15 km northeast of Gassan volcano in Yamagata Prefecture in northern Honshu, Japan.
It formed about 12,000 years ago during an eruption that produced dacitic pyroclastic flows and tephra fall to the east until the Pacifi Ocean. A lava dome grew at the end of the eruption.
There are many hot springs at and near the volcano. These are among the main attractions of the area.

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Typical eruption style: explosive
Hijiori volcano eruptions: 12,000 years ago

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Background

Hijiori volcano formed in a location with no previous volcanic activity about 12,000 years ago NE of the extinct older massive Gassan volcano. The initial eruption was a large explosive event that produced pumice flows extending over 9 km and reaching up to 150 m thickness.
Hijiori hot spring and Jizokongen legend
Yamagata prefecture is very much known for its many hot springs, in fact, it is the only prefecture where every municipality has its own hot springs.
Hijiori hot spring was discovered about 1200 years ago during the era of the emperor Heizei, then opened as a hot spring spot on 2 January in 1391. Hijiori hot spring has an interesting legend related to its discovery saying Jizokongen told the old man to tell people the benefits of the hot spring bath. Since then, Hijiori hot spring became a common bath for farmers to heal everyday's strain from farmwork. The cave where Jizokongen used to live is called "Jizogura", now known as the god of marriage. The morning market of Hijiori hot spring is very unique where friendly old ladies come in front of the hotels to sell their homemade products and fresh vegetables.
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Sources:
- Yamagata, Japan
- Miyagi, I (2008) "The beginning of explosive eruptions on a location lacking volcanoes: A case study on the Hijiori volcano, Northeastern Japan", American Geophysical Union, Fall Meeting 2006, abstract #V51E-1717


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