David Shormann


The Novarupta-Katmai eruption of June 6-8, 1912, is the largest volcanic eruption of the 20th and 21st Centuries. Located in a remote corner of Southwest Alaska, the predominantly rhyolitic eruption provides many opportunities for researchers who agree that high-energy, short-term events are the major shapers of earth’s surface. The 60-hour eruption produced 30 km3 of deposits, over 200 m deep in places. Most of this was released during the first 16 hours, forming The Valley of 10,000 Smokes. Deposits include massive, non-welded to highly welded ignimbrites, finely-layered high energy, proximal ignimbrite (HEPI) deposits, pyroclastic density current (PDC) deposits, mudflows, and large quantities of pumice and ash. Within a few years of the eruption, streams gouged 20-30 m deep canyons through valley floor deposits. The author’s photogeologic evidence and 40Ar/39Ar analysis revealing excess argon, combined with recent secular neocatastrophist research on volcanism, allows for reinterpretation or rejection of several uniformitarian-biased models. Topics covered include radioisotopes, bedrock incision rates, timing of magma formation and crystallization, frequency of volcanic activity over time, and tuyas. Novarupta-Katmai testifies to the biblical pattern of Creation/Flood/Ice Age/Stasis, freeing us from unrealistic uniformitarian bias.


Novarupta, volcanism, fountains of the deep, bedrock incision, ignimbrite, magma chamber, Creation, Flood, Ice Age, stasis, deep time, rhyolite, dacite, andesite


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