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Spires of the Deep

An underwater spire is covered with algaeThe most recent study of Yellowstone Lake revealed that the lake floor is a wilderness pockmarked by hundreds of fissures and hydrothermal vents. Gas bubbles out of deep cracks and eerie spires rise tens of feet above the lake floor. The spires are covered with algae, sponges, and other living aquatic organisms.

scientists study a sample from an underwater spire

Analyses of one of the spires indicate that it is about 11,000 years old. Perhaps these spires are the remains of former hot springs. A CAT scan revealed numerous tiny soda straw-like channels within in which may once have been conduits for the flow of the thermal water.

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Young Scientists
Yellowstone Express
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Hot Water Treasures
Hot Spring Ecology
Scientific Research

This work is supported by

National Science Foundation    Yellowstone Park Foundation
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