Lava flows in Valle del Bove
After one and half year of rest, on 7. September 2004, Etna started another flank eruption in Valle del Bove, attracting guides, photoreporters and scientists. Tom Pfeiffer (see our link page) and Marco Fulle were able to reach Etna during the first days of the eruption, when lava was finding its way through snow layers, more than 10m thick, which since 2000 were preserved below the thick ash from South East Crater and the big 2002 flank eruption. As usual the pictures on this page link to larger photos and the lens focal length helps to understand scales. All times are local (GMT + 2 hr)
10 Sep 12h, f=28mm from Belvedere (2750m). Lava flows from the degassing vent (left) to the advancing front (right).
10 Sep 16h, f=28mm. The vent at 2620m. Thick snow layers are buried below ash between the red lava and the Etna guides.
10 Sep 16h, f=135mm. Zoom on the snow layers deposited in 2000-2002 and then buried by ash from Etna eruptions.
10 Sep 16h, f=135mm. At 30m from the vent, the flow almost stops corrugating itself into crests of ropy lava.
10 Sep 18h, f=50mm. An «iceberg» floats over flowing lava, violently boiling and steaming.
10 Sep 19h, f=28mm. Other ice blocks fall from the snow layers encircling the lava vent.
10 Sep 19h, f=28mm. The lava flows from the vent among wonderful ash layers.
12 Sep 19h, f=50mm. The flow emerges from a tunnel among wonderful lava crests.
10 Sep 17h, f=28mm. RAI-TV cameraman Giovanni Tomarchio at work assisted by a Forestale Guard.
10 Sep 17h, f=50mm. Tom Pfeiffer at work between the steam plumes coming from snow blocks on the flows.
10 Sep 17h, f=28mm. Ash layers from the 2002 flank eruption bury thick snow layers from previous winters.
12 Sep 18h, f=28mm. A photographer takes a rest admiring the flows encircling an island of solified lava.
10 Sep 19h, f=28mm. Wolf Mueller (center), Giovanni Tomarchio and Etna Guides (right) at work again on active Etna.
12 Sep f=135mm. An Etna Guide brings to the lava vent Civil Defense Guards among thick steam plumes.
12 Sep f=135mm. The ash is so hot that each footprint left by the advanncing Forestale Guard becomes a fumarole.
12 Sep f=50mm. From World War II to the lava flow: grandfather's helmet and gas mask are so useful here!