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    Wednesday, July 15, 2009


    Magnificient Displays: Volcanoes and Lightning


    Chaiten; Chile
    Several days ago, a volcano that had been dormant for 9,000 years near the coast of Chile erupted spectacularly, hurling liquified metals and lightning many miles into the sky. The results, which you see here, are called a "dirty thunderstorm," and are quite rare. Nobody is certain what causes them, but according to National Geographic it's believed to be "the result of rock fragments, ash, and ice particles in the plume collid[ing] to produce static charges—just as ice particles collide to create charge in regular thunderstorms."
    Redoubt; Alaska
    Tavurvur, Papua New Guinea

    To view original post from which the following segment is taken, go to:
    This post was written by:

    Karl Fabricius - who has written 160 posts on Environmental Graffiti.

    Karl was raised in Wales and currently lives in Bristol, though his family tree branches to both sides of the Atlantic. Besides holding an English MA, he’s made a documentary on grassroots boxing, played drums in punk rock bands, and traveled some lush parts of the globe. Back from copywriting in Dubai’s desert, he’s thirsty to get scribbling about things worth scribbling about – especially the environment.

    Volcanoes Vs. Lightning [Pics]

    Thu, Apr 23, 2009


    Chaiten, Chili
    Photo by Carlos Gutierrez via BLDGBLOG

    At Environmental

    Graffiti, we’re a bit partial towards all things volcanic. Smouldering fumaroles, bubbling mud volcanoes, sizzling lava lakes, they’ve all been covered here over recent months. Little surprise then, that the idea of volcanoes combined with another extreme and volatile natural phenomenon – lightning – really got us rubbing our hands together. Prepare for fire and brimstone clashes of epic proportions as two of Mother Earth’s most powerful forces go head to head – and we marvel at the mystery of volcanic lightning.

    Face off: Chaiten, Chile, 2008


    Photo by Carlos Gutierrez via BLDGBLOG

    These opening images depict the eruption of Chile’s Chaiten volcano, which last year unexpectedly began to vent its volcanic fury for the first time in over nine thousand years. With volcanic lightning getting in on the act, from a purely photographic point of view it was worth the wait. The awesome power of charged electricity violently grabbing hold of and coursing through the plume of volcanic smoke and ash leaves one breathless.

    Charged atmosphere: Chaiten again


    Photo by Carlos Gutierrez via BLDGBLOG

    However, there was a more ominous side to this geologically explosive incident, likewise brilliantly captured by these apocalyptic looking shots. Once it had escaped the grip of the lightning, Chaiten’s eruption column rose to an estimated height of over 98,000 feet (30,000 m), prompting the evacuation of its nearby village and surrounding areas, and sending out dense ash clouds that contaminated water supplies and coated one town 30 cm deep.

    Clash of the Titans: Rinjani, Indonesia, 1995


    Photo: Oliver Spalt

    But let’s concentrate on the volcanic lightning itself, shown here in the form of a bolt looking to lock horns with lava issuing from Mount Rinjani in Indonesia. When volcanic gasses and materials are thrust high into the air, lightning can be triggered inside the ash clouds. Yet despite the fact that such electrical activity frequently accompanies large eruptions, and have done so at least 150 times in the past two centuries, these spectacular natural light shows are not clearly understood.

    Fingers on triggers: Redoubt, Alaska, 2009


    Photo: Bretwood Higman via National Geographic

    For years geologists talked about dry volcanic dust particles colliding with one another and building up enough static charge to cause sparks in an attempt to explain volcanic lighting. However, a new theory focuses on the surprising water content of magma and volcanic debris, which would make this rogue phenomenon more like a typical thunderstorm. Before the recent eruption of Alaska’s Mount Redoubt – pictured above with fingers of lightning clutching at an ash cloud – scientists daringly set up mapping gear to try and see how lightning is born and spreads through the volcanic plumes.

    Thrust into the melee: Galungung, Indonesia, 1982


    Photo: R. Hadian, U.S. Geological Survey

    Curiously, some volcanoes with large plumes generate little or no lightning, while those whose clouds are smaller produce a lot more. This suggests that while all volcanoes have electric potential, lightning only occurs when there is high resistance to the volcanic current in the air. Size isn’t everything – and yet a large show of volcanic and electrical force can be a warning to expect a pretty major event. The massive 1982 eruption of Indonesia’s Galunggung – shown in the incredible shot above beset by lightning strikes – resulted in 68 deaths, and its ash column forced two Boeing 747s to make emergency landings.

    Seeing red: Sakurajima, 1991


    Photo: Sakurajima Volcananological Observatory via

    The branching of lightning in this image of Sakurajima volcano in Japan is just one example of the types of lightning known to take place over volcanoes. According to one source: “The 1981 eruption of Mt St Helens featured a spectacular display of sheet lightning, with truck-sized balls of St Elmo’s fire seen rolling along the ground 29 miles north of the mountain.” Volcanic lightning surely is one of nature’s most powerful and awe-inspiring pyrotechnic exhibitions, yet mystery still shrouds its origins.

    Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6



    jack frost art - do pics

    Is this the Real Jack Frost? [PICS]

    Mon, Dec 29, 2008


    Images by Jeremy Olden

    It looks as if Jack Frost is getting brave. This icicle hanging from a house in Lake Stevens, Washington bares an uncanny resemblance to a face, could it be the infamous ice sprite’s calling card?

    The eyes, nose and lips are clearly defined in this frozen spectacle, but who says if Master Frost was to appear to us that he would be in human form? After all, he is meant to be an elf or pixie of some sort.


    Hailing from Viking folklore, Jack Frost is thought to be the anglified version of Jokul Frosti, meaning ‘icicle frost’. The mythical creature dances at night decorating the land with intricate ice patterns and icicles, some of which we featured recently in 10 Abstract Masterpieces of Frost.

    Source Komo News via Telegraph






    Earth's Mighty Cliff Faces


    white cliffs of dover

    white cliffs of dover-2

    beachyhead - white cliffs

    cliffs of Moher

    cliffs of Moher-2

    croaghaun cliff

    cabo girago cliffs

    vinyard at base of cabo Girago

    Preikestolen cliffs



    kjeragbolten boulder

    ramnjefellsfossen waterfall cliff

    troll wall or trollveggen

    Mt. asgard

    mt. thor

    half dome

    half dome-2

    kalaupapa cliffs-highest sea cliffs in world

    Auyantepui or Devil's Mountain - angel falls

    great trango tower



    Nature Creates Ice Art #4 - waterfalls

    10 Most Incredible Waterfalls of Ice

    Thu, Oct 9, 2008


    Environmental Graffiti Will be Changing Dramatically Soon. Get a Sneak Preview By Signing Up Here.

    ice climbers
    Image: Herman Erberr

    We’re used to seeing stunning images of cascading waterfalls in all their fluid glory, but have you ever wondered how they would look if Jack Frost was let loose on them? Well, you need wait no longer as we have compiled a range of fantastic frozen waterfalls.

    1. This enchanting image of an ice waterfall perfectly captures the force and flow of the water underneath the ice, making it hard to comprehend how it ever manages to freeze.
    photogapher unknown

    2. Ice climbers flock to The Fang in Vail, Colorado. The enormous ice pillar forms from the cascading waterfall only on exceptionally cold winters, and when it does the column can measure up to 50 meters high and has been known to have a base measuring 8 meters wide.
    the fang
    photographer unknown

    3. If you think climbing an ice waterfall is scary, imagine the fear factor when part of the cascade breaks off and collapses to the ground mere meters from you and your buddy. That’s exactly what happened climbers Albert Leichtfried and Markus Bendler on their ascent of a frozen waterfall near Hokkaido, Japan. Their friend managed to capture the frightening moment on camera. Both climbers made it to safety soon after.
    ice climbers
    Image: Herman Erberr

    4. Thick layers of ice sit on St Louis Falls in Beauharnois, Quebec. The area is home to one of the largest hydroelectric generating stations in the world.
    St louis
    Image: Eric Begin

    5. This fantastic shot shows the waterfall freezing from outside in; there’s still a considerable waterfall flowing within the ice lume.
    ice lume
    Image: hightechredneck

    6. Undulating waves and nodules of ice give this waterfall in Starved Rock State Park, Illinois, such wonderful texture.
    marshmallow ice
    Image: leroidude

    7. This random waterfall was discovered on the road side of a seldom travelled road near Hamilton, Canada.
    Image: Martin Cathrae

    8. The folds at the bottom of this waterfall demonstrate how slowly waterfalls can freeze, and are in stark contrast to the jagged, spiky icicles hanging from the edge of the rock.
    spikes and folds
    Image: slieb25

    9. This great image was taken in Oak Creek Canyon near a place called Temple of Mother Earth on the West Fork Trail, Sedona, Arizona.
    Image: Eileen Nauman

    10. A simply fabulous shot from the bottom of the ice waterfall looking up. Just look how the ice has built up from the spray on surrounding twigs. That’s what you call natural beauty.
    looking up
    Image: Stefan Gara



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