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Caldera Chronicles

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Have you noticed there has been an increase in the number of earthquakes happening in Yellowstone National Park over the last week? This is because there is an active earthquake swarm occurring beneath Yellowstone Lake. Although it looks impressive, it pales in comparison to past sequences, including the 2008–2009 Yellowstone Lake swarm.

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  • 2 min to read

The Blackfoot Volcanic Field in southeast Idaho is a unique product of Yellowstone hotspot volcanism. While it is chemically similar to other volcanic rocks in eastern Idaho that are related to the hotspot, it is located far from the hot spot track — a testament to its entanglement with tectonic activity of the Basin and Range Province.

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Earthquake magnitudes may seem straightforward, but a lot goes into their calculation, and multiple methods can be used. These methods must account for many complications, like the impacts of local geology on the amplitude of shaking. In Yellowstone, a modern seismic network and experienced analysts make it possible to determine the magnitudes of even the smallest earthquakes.

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Hayden Valley is a gorgeous expanse of grassland and meadows located right in the center of Yellowstone National Park.  It is a haven for wildlife and a popular spot for viewing some of Yellowstone’s most iconic animals.  But why does this meadow exist in the midst of what is otherwise a high-altitude forest of lodgepole pine trees?  The area’s geology holds the key.

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Yellowstone Caldera Chronicles is a weekly column written by scientists and collaborators of the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory. This week's contribution is from Dakota Churchill, physical scientist with the U.S. Geological Survey and the University of California, Berkeley; Michael Manga, professor at the University of California, Berkeley; Shaul Hurwitz, research hydrologist with the USGS; Joe Licciardi, professor at the University of New Hampshire; and Jim Paces, research geologist at the USGS.

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Yellowstone Caldera Chronicles is a weekly column written by scientists and collaborators of the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory. This week's contribution is from Annie Carlson, research coordinator at the Yellowstone Center for Resources, Yellowstone National Park.

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Yellowstone Caldera Chronicles is a weekly column written by scientists and collaborators of the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory. This week's contribution is from Madison Myers, in the Department of Earth Sciences, and Luke McKay, in the Department of Land Resources and Environmental Sciences and the Center for Biofilm Engineering, both at Montana State University.

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