El Malpais - pahoehoe lava flow

This is a photo of a pahoehoe lava flow.

Detailed Description

Hot, fluid lava is responsible for the formation of the ropey texture on the surface of this pahoehoe lava flow. Lava flowing under the surface of a cooled surface layer results in pushed-up features on large flow fields. The broken and fractured character of the lava results from the shrinkage of the lava as it solidifies and cools. Some of the large cracks extend downward for many dozens of feet. This view is along the Lava Falls hiking route in southern El Malpais National Monument (NPS, 2009c). Many of these types of landscape features can be seen forming today at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.


Image Dimensions: 800 x 600

Date Taken:

Location Taken: US