Mount Rainier: Earthquakes in the Hydrothermal System
Earthquakes at Mount Rainier from 2010 to 2019. As shown in the graphic, fluids from the magmatic system beneath the volcano rise through existing cracks and weaknesses in the crust. Along with rainwater and ice/snow melt, these fluids combine to create a hydrothermal system within the volcano. When pressurized fluids move along faults in the shallow subsurface, they sometimes generate small magnitude earthquakes and earthquake swarms.