Ash cloud confirmed from Grímsfjall volcano

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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 (Rúv.is, picture)
Tíu til tólf klukkutímar í hlaup (Rúv.is, new picture)
Allir viðbragðsaðilar komnir af stað vegna gossins (Vísir.is, Picture)
Mjög öflug gosstöð (mbl.is, New picture)

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

This entry was posted in Ash cloud, Earthquakes, Eruptions, Grímsvötn / Grímsfjall, Volcano. Bookmark the permalink.

212 Responses to Ash cloud confirmed from Grímsfjall volcano

  1. birdseye says:

    joining the viewing here- or at least some of it – from on the road. Nice to have the eruption wait until spring and long daylight.

  2. Road 1 over Skeiðarársand has been closed due to ash fall. But the ash cloud is directly over that road. This eruption appears to be bigger then the eruption in the year 2004.

    http://www.ruv.is/frett/loka-veginum-yfir-skeidararsand

  3. Henrik says:

    More violent, higher column, quicker to develop. Can’t wait for those aireal photos!

  4. Renato Rio says:

    It looks to me that from the Mila cam things are getting bad. Worse than from the cam pointed by Jón. Could it be happening at a different location?

  5. jose Luis says:
  6. Pieter says:

    The ash-haze is getting closer at Mila’s webcam.. It’s a spectacular view, very frightening hehe. :D

    • RonF says:

      Peiter, are you in Iceland? If so, your adrenaline must be flowing a tad high :) I hope all in Iceland don’t get affected too much by this

  7. Renato Rio says:

    There is a whirlpool forming at Jökulsárlón. Birds seem to be getting confused.
    Could that mean a shift from tides?

  8. Ash has started to fall into populated area close to Vatnajökull glacier.

    http://www.mbl.is/frettir/innlent/2011/05/21/aska_farin_ad_falla_i_byggd/

  9. karin, germany says:

    look here http://www.vegagerdin.is/umferd-og-faerd/vefmyndavelar/sudurland
    ash cloud comming down in the southern part of iceland

  10. RonF says:

    Jon, subsequent to the quakes at Grimsvotn, there has been an uptick at Katla such as the one below. I know your busy, but if you can quickly comment on if these are artifacts or not.

    Saturday
    21.05.2011 18:41:24 63.685 -19.201 4.1 km 2.7 61.0 5.6 km NNE of Goðabunga

    • Most likey a fake earthquake. The volcano tremor from this eruption can be seen on SIL stations over most of Iceland I think.

      The Hekla web cam server having issues it seems.

  11. Jon says:

    Oh, that’s a shame! Perhaps this is a stupid question, but is it ever really possible to actually see molten lava (I mean in person, not on tv..)?

    Thanks!

    • Pieter says:

      It is, but not with this eruption probably. Beneath an ice cap the magma interacts with the ice and forms ash, so all the actual lava dissapears. But with effusive eruptions like the Fimmvorduhals eruption or Krafla etc, it is very well possible.

      • Jon says:

        Thanks Pieter, I’m currently on holiday in Iceland, and am pretty excited about the volcano! (My previous comment was supposed to be in reply to your last reply, but it didn’t work for some reason!)

        Also, what is a fake earthquake?

    • Emmi says:

      You can see molten lava quite easily on the Big Island of Hawaii. I have hiked right up to it, and melted my boot on it.

      Flow map:
      http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/kilauea/update/archive/2011/Jan/J21Erup_Overview_110204_L.jpg
      It is a very short walk from the road right now to the current flow (bright red)

      Sorry if this is OT. I don’t work for the Hawai’i tourist board or anything.

  12. Tony M says:

    I wonder if the people in the campervans on the Jokulsarlon webcam know that there’s been an eruption of whether they’ll just wander out into a dark ashy landscape in the morning!

  13. treacleminer says:

    Mentioned on UK BBC now, but not worth reading

    http://www.jonfr.com/volcano/?p=940

  14. AlexBavaria says:

    Now the ash has reached the mila-cam at Jökulsárlón and the sleeping campers :-)
    Spooky look. I would love to be there right now!

  15. treacleminer says:

    Whoops – wrong link. Try:-
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-13487858

    Sorry folks.

  16. According to DV.is the ash is fine. I do not know if it is like Eyjafjallajökull volcano ash. But that is going to be clear in next few days what type of eruption this is.

  17. scuj1 says:

    Maybe nothing, but looking webcam at Jökulsárlón and clicking on the link for Bláa Lónið to see the light comparison, there is new links that have a appeared as Eldgos í Grímsvötnum. Not working, but promising no?

  18. FredL says:

    Also some remarks on Dutch radio.

  19. There is a intermittent pattern in this eruption. Something that I have not seen before I Grímsvötn eruption before. I do not know if it is a reason to worry about it.

  20. Martin says:

    Looks like some quakes are spreading danger close to Katla.

  21. Mr. Moho says:

    @Jón Frímann: is there a less time compressed tremor plot available than this available for public viewing? http://hraun.vedur.is/ja/oroi/grf.gif

  22. Norway says:

    Anyone who has a link that shows the ash cloud? Is this volcano a VEI 3? Eya was VEI 4?

  23. Denise-Marie says:

    Wow, exciting news, but I am flying from Chicago to Paris on Monday! Any ideas yet on how much and where air traffic will be disrupted?

  24. Here is the latest picture. But there is heavy ash fall at Klaustri town. But the ash cloud is moving west it seems.

    http://www.ruv.is/frett/mikid-oskufall-a-klaustri

  25. PeakVT says:

    Thanks for the links everybody.

  26. The latest news place the ash cloud up in 20 km high. This eruption is larger then the eruption in the year 2004.

  27. Vince says:

    Jón, in satellite looks like a new plume emerged , but does not seem in the same place. Maybe an illusion from a low levels winds switch, but ….
    What you think ?

    Blue points:
    http://imageshack.us/m/651/4320/satb.gif

    • I think this just due to air distribution close to the volcano. I do not know how many vents are active at the moment in Grímsfjall volcano at the moment.

    • Mattias, Swe says:

      Yes Jon is most likely right. The winds at different heights is spreading out the ash. See this satellite sequence http://sat24.com/

  28. David James says:

    Certainly exciting times for Iceland! What is the average length of Grimsvotn eruptions?

  29. The ash cloud from Reykjanesbæ. A good distance away. The ash cloud is getting up to 20 km high.

    http://www.vf.is/Frettir/48709/default.aspx

  30. According to news on Rúv the ash plume from Grímsfjall volcano is most likely the highest since Hekla volcano eruption in the year 1947.

    They are also estimating on observation that the current eruption in Grímsfjall volcano might be slightly larger then when it was at the most in Eyjafjallajökull volcano eruption in the year 2010.

    • RonF says:

      Jon, when might we know more info on the ash composition which would affect predictions for the ash traveling over europe.

      Right now, all the U.S. news articles I have read are minimizing the affect of this eruption due to ash saying either it is too small of an eruption, won’t last long, the ash particles are too big to float over europe or that the affect from Eyjafjallajökull’s eruption on air traffic was very rare.

      I don’t think one can assume all this until this plays out more.

      Are you going to get any sleep tonight ? :)

  31. RonF says:

    News story on Yahoo with a little more background info on Grímsfjall. Downplays the risk of ash disrupting air traffic over europe due to the heavier ash particles. All conjecture at this point until this plays out

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/eu_iceland_volcano

  32. Peter Cobbold says:

    BBC showed short aerial video sequence at 1am local – looked like double plume- white.

  33. David Calvo says:

    Hi verybody, it seems a 40.000 feet ash plume has been reported, just impressive….

    http://mbl.is/frettir/innlent/2011/05/21/buid_ad_loka_skeidararsandi/

    I don´t speak icelandic, but 40.000 is just 40.000…. ;)

  34. David James says:

    Isn’t 65,000 feet into the Stratosphere?

  35. Mr. Moho says:

    It appears that new cameras for Grímsvötn have been added to the Míla website. They are not active yet, though.

    http://live.mila.is/grimsvotn/
    http://live.mila.is/grimsvotn2/

  36. Tyler Mannison says:

    What is the maximum VEI eruption that can occur at Grimsfjall?

  37. Irpsit says:

    My friends, oh my God here in Selfoss! We can see a huge ash cloud, I estimate at least 10-15 km high. I even saw it today when we drove from Reykjavik, yes I saw it from Reykjavik. And the lightnings we start seeing it from the Blue Mountains. 10 min ago, it just became much bigger and larger. It seems there are two sites of eruption from what I saw from here now… I am going to sleep, tomorrow we drive east at 5am

  38. Irpsit says:

    Yes I confirm the local visual sightning of two plumes…. I think its Grimsvotn and Gjalp.

  39. Irpsit says:

    It seems a major part in the left side (maybe Gjalp) and something smaller to the right. Why do I assume this, because looking at where I am seeing it seems the left part where explosions are happening is far too north for being the central volcano of Grimsvotn. But I might be wrong… I am so excited that its difficult for me to think clearly

  40. Peter Cobbold says:

    Most of the tremor stations , even 100km away, show a spike in activity at the time of eruption starting. Is that usual? I dont recall tremors being so widespread when Eyjaf. was erupting.
    http://hraun.vedur.is/ja/englishweb/tremor.html

  41. Dan Cruz says:

    Looking at the different tremor graphs, it almost looks like the whole of Iceland shook a little.

  42. PeakVT says:

    Click on my name for a map of stuff around Grímsvötn. Let me know if I’ve missed anything.

  43. Dan Margaritaville says:

    Ahhh the PeakVT maps again. So nice to see. :)