Ash cloud confirmed from Grímsfjall volcano

A eruption ash cloud has been confirmed from Grímsfjall volcano. I do not know how high it currently is. But Icelandic news is reporting that the cloud is rising fast and high (estimated 3000 – 4000 meters and rising). Explosions have been seen from good distance.

Update 1: They estimate that there are 10 to 12 hours until the glacier flood appears from this eruption. The ash cloud can be tracked with lighting map here.

News about this.

Strókur rís hátt yfir Grímsvötnum (Rú, picture)
Tíu til tólf klukkutímar í hlaup (Rú, new picture)
Allir viðbragðsaðilar komnir af stað vegna gossins (Ví, Picture)
Mjög öflug gosstöð (, New picture)

Updated at 19:41 UTC.
Updated at 19:53 UTC.
Updated 20:21 UTC.

212 Replies to “Ash cloud confirmed from Grímsfjall volcano”

  1. Dawn at Jökulsárlón and the scenery is becoming faintly visible again…


  2. Jökulsárlón cam show water retreating. So the whirlpools we saw earlier were probably tidal in nature.

  3. Hi PeakVT,
    Thank-you for your ” map of stuff “, and to all you other wonderfully interesting posters here on Jón Frímann amazing blog may I take this opportunity to again say thank-you to you all too!! I really enjoy lurking and learning here and also over on Erik Klemetti’s Eruptions Blog.
    PeakVT : ) since you refered to it, would you mind pointing out the where abouts
    of “Gjalp” ? Excuse me if this is a no brainer, but to see it/or have it pointed out on
    your very cool map would help this one newbie visualize!

  4. ‘yall are gonna have to give me a bit on the plots. Still inebriated.

  5. Lurk, I was wondering what happened to you! I said, either he’s drunk, gettin sum, on a work binge or deep in plot. Pace yourself, its going to be busy from this point forward 🙂 Something is also brewing on the SAF and related both in San Fran and So Cal.

  6. The Mila folks are ambitious if they’re setting up a webcam on Hvannadalshnjúkur. It would have a good view, though, as long as the ash wasn’t blowing towards it.

  7. @RonF– what are you seeing on the San Andreas, looks normal to me?

  8. WOW! I’ve been out for a while and what has happened ever since!

  9. If the winds are blowing westwards, why all this ash accumulating at Jökulsárlón?

    1. Thank you, one more time, Lurking. How about those “two plumes”? Any hints?

      1. No.. but I can hazard a guess. Grímsvötn has a lake in it’s caldera… down under the ice. First plume was it opening up, and the second was from the interaction with water.

        Another issue that I have noticed… { I AM NOT MAKING ANY PREDICTIONS SO DON’T READ IT AS SUCH }, the whole region became seismically active with spotty quakes from Grímsvötn to the Katla area. Nothing in any sort of lineament, but it just seems interesting that the whole fissure swarm responded to the eruption… at least based on the plots.

        Personally… I am curious if this was accumulated melt from Grímsvötn or if Hamarinn or Bárðarbunga are lending a bit… or are going to lend some. Bárðarbunga has the deepest of the quakes in this little slice of the seismic time window.

        Again.. not a prediction, just pondering it.

      2. Lurking: Look back to some of the recent earthquakes on the Reykjanes peninsula. When a lot of quakes occur in short succession, the automated system gets confused and misplaces quakes. This happens when the system sees one quake at one seismic station, but another quake at a different seismic station, and interprets them as the same quake. The quakes aren’t really where the system thinks they are.

      3. How do seismometers place quakes? Each seismic station interprets the time difference between P waves and S waves, and calculates a distance. This makes a circle (or rather a sphere, with us knowing that it can’t occur above ground), around the station where a quake could have been.
        A second station detects the same quake, and calculates the distance. Where the two spheres intersect, there is a circle (at a right angle to the earth’s surface). Anywhere along that circle, (except above ground), could be where the quake occurred. A third station will calculate another distance. Where the third distance intersects that circle is the quake epicenter. This allows us to calculate, in 3-dimensional space, where the quake was.

        The problem is, when there are a lot of quakes at once, the computer has a hard time figuring out which set of P and S waves belongs to each quake. Therefore, it screws up a lot, and miscalculates the location of quakes.

      4. Here’s a quick primer on this. Note that it’s actually spheres, not circles. This is simplified for the masses. However, the intersection of three spheres can only be one or two points, only one of which would be below ground. This allows us to calculate the latitude, longitude, and depth of a quake. The quality of a quake location is based on how well the calculated spheres intersect. (The earth isn’t perfect, and different parts of it conduct different waves differently.)

  10. Gosh i wish i could get another ash sample for my normal SEM procedure. Those campers at Jökursalon would surely have enough of it.

  11. I can see some blue sky appearing at Mila’s cam, or is it an illusion?

    1. New quakes showing now under Vatnajökull. More activity under way?

  12. Could the two plumes showing different colors point to a Surtseyan type of eruption?

  13. Morning, everybody !
    So we are gathered here together again *gg* ( and I have access to a normal computer)
    First thing I saw, the Swiss Newsservice has an article about Grimsvötn. And Imagine: by the resources ( “further reading” kind of thing), is Jons Islandblog , together with the IMO and Marc Szeglat’s blog.

    Your blog is noticed, Jon.

  14. Morning everyone, awesome job last night, thank you all for your time updating us all….

    Wee question, on reflection of the provisional data and looking at the way the place came to life right along the fissure system is there concern over there that the jolt from the initial swarm of earthquakes in the area could have stirred and woken any of the neighbouring volcano systems back to life. ie Helka and Katla to name two, as they have shown themselves to be restless of late.

    Please keep up the good work, its been fascinating watching this blog over the last year. Many many thanks to all who put so much of their time in keeping us all informed out here in cyber space.


    1. Hekla / Katla… not always. But then they are generally active on their own.

      2008 Bardabunga
      2006 Bardabunga
      2005 Bardabunga
      2004 Grímsvötn
      2002 Bardabunga
      2000 Hekla
      2000 Bardabunga
      1999 Katla
      1998 Grímsvötn
      1997 Bardabunga
      1996 Bardabunga
      1996 Grímsvötn
      1995 Bardabunga
      1991 Hekla
      1991 Bardabunga
      1986 Bardabunga
      1984 Grímsvötn
      1983 Grímsvötn
      1981 Hekla
      1980 Hekla
      1972 Grímsvötn
      1970 Hekla
      1955 Katla
      1954 Grímsvötn
      1954 Grímsvötn
      1948 Grímsvötn
      1947 Hekla
      1945 Grímsvötn
      1941 Grímsvötn
      1939 Grímsvötn
      1938 Grímsvötn
      1934 Grímsvötn
      1934 Grímsvötn
      1933 Grímsvötn
      1922 Grímsvötn
      1919 Grímsvötn
      1918 Katla
      1913 Hekla
      1910 Bardabunga
      1910 Grímsvötn
      1902 Bardabunga
      1902 Grímsvötn

  15. Sunday
    22.05.2011 06:48:27 64.411 -17.175 5.2 km 2.0 43.45 4.8 km E of Grímsfjall
    22.05.2011 06:48:26 64.453 -17.256 1.1 km 1.6 32.49 5.5 km N of Grímsfjall
    22.05.2011 06:48:26 64.383 -16.956 3.0 km 2.0 48.37 15.4 km E of Grímsfjall
    22.05.2011 06:48:25 64.365 -17.345 0.5 km 2.0 71.98 5.6 km SW of Grímsfjall
    22.05.2011 06:35:00 64.393 -17.207 1.1 km 1.5 48.32 3.4 km ESE of Grímsfjall
    22.05.2011 06:18:17 64.516 -17.449 1.1 km 2.1 90.04 14.3 km SSE of Bárðarbunga
    22.05.2011 06:10:38 64.529 -17.227 1.1 km 1.3 90.01 14.0 km N of Grímsfjall
    22.05.2011 06:07:46 64.457 -17.363 1.1 km 1.4 90.01 7.2 km NW of Grímsfjall

  16. @Irpsit:
    Time to go to bed for me too.
    Try to stay safe and remember that ashes can be harmful to your health. And beware the joküllhlaups!

  17. Good morning!

    Any radar pictures like the ones from Lady E yet? Unfortunately, the pictures available so far focus on the eruption cloud in order to show how high and impressive it is. I want to see what’s at the base!

    PS. Has there been official confirmation of two separate eruption sites yet and if so, where?

    1. Henrik:
      I’m already heading to my bad.
      But there were rumors that this could be happening both at Grimsvötn and Gjalp. Others say it could be Hammarín and Bardarbunga.
      Officially, they say there was two plumes coming from the same source: a first white column of steam, from the vaporizing lake water and then another one, explosive, from lava coming in direct contact with that water, denser and not as high.
      Well, I guess I am too sleepy to make any sense.
      Please, keep an eye at the news. I’ll be back later. (It is 5 o’clock in Rio).

      1. I meant “bed”, but it is “bad” to go to bed with so much taking place… 🙂

    1. Thanks! That photo confirms at least two, possibly three eruption sites, does it not!

  18. Hi guys. This is a gif I made of just after the start of the eruption from the webcam that saw it from the top left corner of the screen. Thought you should see it. hope my embedding of it works.

    “Eruption Gif”

    1. I like the first one…
      ( seems I should learn Islandic – Giggle is just too troublesome)

Comments are closed.