Three Oregon Volcanoes Make National Geographic’s Top 10 Most Dangerous In America

While they may not be currently active, these three Oregon Volcanoes are still listed as very high threat potential.

Crater lake as seen from outerspace
Crater Lake as seen from space. Photo by NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center via Flickr CC2.

Oregon has some of the prettiest wilderness for people to explore in the United States.  From deep gorges and rushing rivers to gorgeous lakes and rugged peaks, you don’t have to travel far to find beauty and solitude in our gorgeous state.  Much of this beauty was created by Oregon’s violent volcanic past.  Oregon has a lot of volcanoes as it sits on the northeast edge of the Ring of Fire.  While most of Oregon’s volcanoes are dormant, some are still considered a risk and have a high threat potential today.  Three of Oregon’s Volcanoes are on National Geographic’s list of America’s Ten Most Dangerous Volcanoes.

America’s 4th Most Dangerous Volcano Is Mount Hood

Oregon Mountains
Mt Hood from outside Oregon City. Photo by Bill Young via Flickr CC2.

Mount Hood made number 4 on National Geographic’s list of most dangerous volcanoes in America.  Mount Hood is a stratovolcano with a very high threat potential.

A simplified map of the Mount Hood Hazard Zone from the USGS website.

Its most recent eruption was in the 1790’s, about a decade before Lewis and Clark came through to explore the area.  Ash and mud from that eruption was still clogging up the Sandy river when Lewis and Clark wrote about it.

Oregon Mountain Photos
The sun rising over Mt. Hood. Photo by ilirjan rrumbullaku via Flickr CC2.

Recently Mt Hood experienced a cluster of earthquakes.  You can check out the most up to date monitoring of Mount Hood and it’s earthquakes at the monitoring map here.  You can also get information on Mount Hood’s volcanic past here.

America’s 6th Most Dangerous Volcano Is South Sister

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Rachel Berdahl (@snarlz_explores)

The Three Sisters are just west of Bend Oregon, and this hotbed of volcanic activity is about 115 square miles.  The most recent eruption from these complex stratovolcanoes happened 2,000 years ago, though the threat potential remains very high.

A simplified map of the Three Sisters Hazard Zone from the USGS website.

There is still volcanic activity going on underground in the area.  At the end of the 1990’s and start of the 2000’s, volcanologists noticed an area of ground deforming just west of Middle and South Sister.

The nine mile wide area was called the Bulge, and indicated magma accumulating and moving underground.  You can check out the Sisters monitoring map here, and get more information about the Three Sisters volcanic past here.

America’s 10th Most Dangerous Volcano Is Mount Mazama / Crater Lake

A spring storm coming in over the crystal blue waters of Crater Lake. Photo by Doug Jones via Flickr CC2.

Mount Mazama exploded 7,700 years ago and was the largest eruption in the Cascade Range in the last hundred thousand years.

Painting of eruption of Mount Mazama (image courtesy of National Park Service, Crater Lake)

What was left after the explosion was a caldera which slowly filled with water and formed Crater Lake, the deepest lake in the United States at 1,949 feet deep.  The threat potential from this volcano is still very high.

A simplified map of the Crater Lake Hazard Zone from the USGS website.

You can look at the Crater Lake monitoring map here, and get information about Crater Lake and Mount Mazama’s volcanic past here.

You can get a list of Oregon’s volcanoes here and see them on a map.

Facebook Comments
Sunset Lodgingl