Kīlauea Volcano's East Rift Zone: 35 years and still erupting

Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park


January 3, 2018, marks the 35th anniversary of Kīlauea Volcano’s ongoing East Rift Zone eruption. During its first three years, high lava fountains erupted episodically from the Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō vent. Since then, nearly continuous effusion of lava has sent countless ‘a‘ā and pāhoehoe flows downslope, burying about 55 square miles of the volcano’s south flank. USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geologist Carolyn Parcheta briefly describes the early history of this eruption and provides an in-depth look at lava flow activity during the past year, including the Kamokuna ocean entry and lava delta.