Photo and Video Chronology – Kīlauea – October 6, 2021

Release Date:

A new eruption at Kīlauea's summit began at approximately 3:20 p.m. HST on September 29, 2021. Lava activity is currently confined within Halema'uma'u crater. Gas emissions and seismic activity at the summit remain elevated. HVO field crews—equipped with specialized safety gear—monitor the eruption from within the closed area of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park with NPS permission.


HVO scientists collect detailed data to assess hazards and understand how the eruption is evolving at Kīlauea's summit, all of which are shared with the National Park Service and emergency managers. Access to this hazardous area is by permission from, and in coordination with, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.

Color photograph of vent and lava lake

Photo of fountaining from the western vent in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea. Spatter from the fountain continues to build up a horseshoe-shaped cone around the vent, with lava flowing into the lake at the base. This photo was taken from the western crater rim on October 5, 2021. USGS photo by N. Deligne.

(Public domain.)

The eruption continues in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea. This video shows the dominant fountain at the west vent, from two different angles, as well as the smaller fountaining source emerging through the lava lake. 

Matt Patrick, USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory

(Public domain.)

Thermal webcam GIF shows one week of eruptive activity in Halema'uma'u

This animated image file (GIF) shows one week of images from the Kīlauea summit F1cam thermal webcam taken between 10:00 a.m. on September 29 and 10:00 a.m. on October 6, using one image every hour. The Kīlauea summit eruption, which began within Halema'uma'u at 3:21 p.m. on September 29, has created a lava lake that has covered most of the lava erupted between December 2020–May 2021. The solidified "lava island" from the last eruption is visible in the center (dark blue) and the top of the old west vent cone is visible to the west (below island). The lava fountains in the central and southern (right) portions of the lake have diminished since the eruption started and the west vent (growing into view in the lower right) remains the most vigorous. The northern surface of the lava lake appears to be in the process of stagnating and forming a thicker crust due to the distance from active vents. This slow crustal growth is similar to what was seen in the last summit eruption. The temperature scale on the right is in degrees Celsius. USGS animation by L. DeSmither.

(Public domain.)

Color photograph of scientist monitoring eruption

A Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) geologist notes observations of the active lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea. HVO scientists continue to monitor the ongoing eruption from an area within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park that remains closed to the public due to hazardous conditions. USGS photo taken by N. Deligne on October 5, 2021.

(Public domain.)

Color photograph of active lava lake

A view of the lava lake in Halema‘uma‘u crater, at the summit of Kīlauea, taken from the western crater rim looking east. The western vent (lower right) remains the dominant source of fountaining. One fountain remains active in the south portion of the lake (center right). The silver-grey lava comes from the western vent, and the dark black lava comes from the south fountain. USGS photo by N. Deligne taken on October 5, 2021. 

(Public domain.)