Iceland newest volcano (short of)

Iceland has many surprising things. Among those surprises is a volcano named Snæfell. I did mention it shortly yesterday. Now it is time for the long version of what this volcano is about. Snæfell volcano is a tall mountain, but it is 1883 meters above sea level. That makes it the highest mountain in Iceland outside of Vatnajökull glacier. Snæfell volcano has a small glaciers (more then one) on is top.

Snæfell volcano is the newest addition to Icelandic volcanoes. Little is currently known about Snæfell as a volcano. But it is now known that it has not erupted for at least 100.000 to 120.000 years. But it is debated among scientists if any eruptions have taken place after last ice-age. But that is around 12.000 years ago. The basic volcano system of Snæfell is in the direction of NNE, with eruption features going along those lines.

Origins of Snæfell volcano can be traced to several lava eruptions that started at least about 400.000 years ago. On top of that eruption even Snæfell volcano has been built by repeated eruptions in this area. Snæfell volcano belongs to the same volcano zone as Öræfajökull volcano and Esjufjöll volcano. In order with other volcanoes on this active volcano zone. It has little to no activity as I have

I do not know of any hydro-thermal areas close to Snæfell volcano. But that is not a surprise. Given how long it is since magma was on the move in this volcano. All the time that I have been watching for earthquakes in Iceland (well over 10 years now). I have never seen any earthquake activity in Snæfell volcano during that period.

South-east of Snæfell volcano is a extinct volcano. It has been weathered down by nature. I do not know how old it is. But that suggests that volcano activity in this area is not something new. Closest SIL station to Snæfell volcano is Vestari Sauðarhnjúkur.

Volcano and fault-line map of Iceland. Snæfell volcano can be seen on this map. Copyright of this picture belongs to Náttúrufræðistofnun Íslands. This picture is from this web site here.


Eldvirkni Snæfells og Kárahnjúka tímasett (Morgunblaðið, 2005)
Snæfell og Nágrenni (, 2000)

Blog post updated at 22:43 CEST on 8 May 2012.

Allt quiet in Iceland

It has been rather quiet in Iceland during the past several weeks. March for instance was unusually quiet. I suspect that April was also rather quiet earthquake wise in Iceland. With nothing special going on. I have currently limited to write about. But I am going to write about few volcanoes in Iceland and there history if there is any history to write about. But there is always some interesting information about volcanoes in Iceland.

Even the newest Icelandic volcano. Named Snæfell (no GVP website as of yet) and is located east of Vatnajökull glacier. It has not erupted for at least 12.000 years. But it is a part of the volcano arch that is made up of Öræfajökull, Esjufjöll volcanoes. Here are some information about in Icelandic. But I am going to write more on it later on. When I have my writer computer back up after I finish moving to Denmark properly.

The dormant volcanoes in Iceland

While all the active volcanoes in Iceland get all the press and coverage. There are volcanoes in Iceland that are not so active and have remain dormant for thousands of years now and currently do not show any signs of activity. Some have some hot spring activity. But that is about it for them. The following volcanoes in Iceland have not erupted in historical times. Some have not even erupted in past 12.000 years best to my knowledge. But as history has proved in other parts of the world. An dormant volcano can start to erupt when it feels like it and without any warning at all in some cases.

This is based on Global Volcanism Program data. So it might be subject to errors and updates.


Hrómundartindur – Last eruption is unknown. This volcano is an stratovolcano.

Grensdalur – Last eruption was in Pleistocene and its current status is Pleistocene-Fumarolic. This volcano is an stratovolcano.

Grímsnes – Last eruption is believed to have taken place around 3500 BC. But this volcano is marked as tephrochronology. This volcano makes crater rows when it erupts.
Geysir – This volcano last erupted in Pleistocene and is marked as Pleistocene-Geysers. This is an stratovolcano.

Hveravellir – This volcano last erupted around the year 950 AD. It is currently marked as radiocarbon. This is an subglacial volcano.

Hofsjökull – This volcano has erupted sometimes in the last 12.000 years. It has the marking holocene. This is an subglacial volcano. The second volcano in this system is not marked in GVP database. But that volcano is named Kerlingarfjöll. I do not know when it last erupted. There is also an embeeded second volcano in Hofsjökull volcano that is Independent from the main Hofsjökull volcano (yes, this is the case it seems). I do not have any idea when that did last erupt.

Esjufjöll – This is an sub-glacier volcano in Vatnajökull glacier. Its last eruption is uncertain. But is believed to taken place in the year 1927. From the year 2000 this volcano has been showing signs of increased activity. This volcano is an stratovolcano.

Fremrinamur – This volcano is last believed to have erupted in the year 1200 BC. This volcano is an stratovolcano.

Þeystareykjabunga – This volcano last erupted around the year 900 BC. This volcano is an shield volcano.

Snæfellsjökull – This volcano last erupted around 200 AD. It is currently marked as radiocarbon. This is an stratovolcano.

Helgrindur (also known as Lysuhóll) – This volcano has no record of eruption. But it is thought that it erupted sometimes in the past 12.000 years. But exact time is not known. This volcano makes pyroclastic cones. This volcano is the smallest volcano system in Iceland.

Tindafjallajökull – It is unknown if this volcano has erupted during holocene. But the GVP information say that dozen of small eruptions took place in early holocene. This is an stratovolcano.

Snæfell – This volcano is located east of Vatnajökull glacier and south of Kverkfjöll volcano. It was once believed that this volcano was extinct. But new research into it has changed that opinion. This is most likely an stratovolcano. But I do not have it confirmed. This volcano has at least not erupted for several thousands years or more. Currently there are no information about this volcano in the Global Volcanism Program database.

Skrokkalda – This volcano is dormant. But I do not know if it has erupted in historical times or not, but I do no think that is the case. I am also not sure what type of volcano it is.

There are few more volcanoes missing due the fact that they are not in the Global Volcanism Program database. But I have them on a map that I own. So they are going to be added later when I update this blog post.