Turrialba Volcano | John Seach


Costa Rica

10.03 N, 83.77 W
summit elevation 3325 m

Turrialba volcano is the second highest in Costa Rica.

Turrialba volcano is located on the eastern end of the Cordillera Central. It is large and covered by vegetation except in the crater. There is a summit depression measuring 2 km E-W and 1.2 km N-S. Seismicity has appeared high under the volcano since 1996.

2020 Eruption
A new eruptive period occurred at Turrialba volcano from June to August 2020. Ash emission to a height of 500 ml above the crater were accompanied by incandescene from the cratrer.

2018 Activity
A small ash plume was visible 100 m above the crater on 23rd March 2018.

2012 Activity
On 12th January 2012 a new vent opened on the SE flank of Turrialba volcano. Ashfall was reported at Tres Ríos, 27 km SW of the volcano. On the 18th January a scientific team observed flames of combusting gas.

2010 Eruption
On 5th January 2010 at 2:28 pm local time residents located on the southwest side of Turrialba Volcano, reported hearing a strong eruption Turrialba Volcanol. At Irazu Volcano National Park ash fell on parked vehicles. In addition, residents of Turrialba, and owners nearby farms on the slopes of Turrialba Volcano reported ashfall. Since mid-December 2009 until 4th January 2010, earthquakes were mainly long period. On 4th of January 2010 there was a significant increase in tremor volcanic, both in record time and in the amplitude of the signal, coinciding with the increase in the tremor there was a significant decrease in LP-type earthquakes. Twenty people were evacuated from the eruption. The eruption was caused by magma intrusion at depth, causing a heating of groundwater, and a sudden decompression through the fracture system.

2008 Unrest
During September 2008 observations revealed damaged to vegetation at the volcano. On the southern flank of the West crater, plants were burned down to the soil. Trees in lower altitude areas were yellowed due to acid rain. Pastures and areas along canyons and depressions were also affected. Turrialba Volcano National Park was temporarily closed on 30th September because high levels of gas were blowing over parts of the park where visitors view the volcano.

2007 Unrest
In August 2007 fractures and new funaroles opened at the volcano. Molten sulphur was observed at the volcano for the first time in 25 years.

1950-60 Fumarolic activity
Large columns of vapour from Turrialba volcano were observed from the city of Cartago in the period 1950-1960.

1920 Fumarolic activity
Large columns of vapour from Turrialba volcano were observed from the city of Cartago.

1866 Eruption
An eruption of Turrialba volcano in 1866 covered most of Costa Rica in ash, and extended to Nicaragua.

Further reading
Vaselli, O., Tassi, F., Duarte, E., Fernandez, E., Poreda, R.J. and Huertas, A.D., 2010. Evolution of fluid geochemistry at the Turrialba volcano (Costa Rica) from 1998 to 2008. Bulletin of Volcanology72(4), pp.397-410.

Reagan, M., Duarte, E., Soto, G.J. and Fernández, E., 2006. The eruptive history of Turrialba volcano, Costa Rica, and potential hazards from future eruptions. SPECIAL PAPERS-GEOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF AMERICA412, p.235.

Turrialba Volcano Eruptions

2020-22, 2018, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2010, 1866, 1864-65, 1861?, 1855, 1853, 1847?, 1723