Pahoehoe Lava in the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument

So what is Pahoehoe lava doing in the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument?

Pahoehoe lavaPahoehoe is the second most abundant type of lava flow. Pahoehoe lava is characterized by a smooth, billowy, or ropy surface. Pahoehoe flows tend to be relatively thin, from a few inches to a few feet thick.

Pahoehoe lavaThe geologic landscape along the Rio Grande from Colorado border to Sante Fe is predominantly volcanic.  At least 35 volcanic vents have been identified on the Taos Plateau, in the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument.

Pahoehoe lavaPahoehoe lava is a type of basaltic lava which forms by many small breakouts of lava from an over-crusted inflating flat, irregular flow. It is typical for shield volcanoes like the ones found on the West side of the Rio Grande river.

Pahoehoe lavaThese images of Pahoehoe lava were captured while I hiked East from the Rio Grande river, up a large drainage in the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument.

Pahoehoe lavaThere appears to be a crystal of some nature in the rock, which I have yet to identify. If you can help, please chime in. My feet are in the image for scale.

(click on images to enlarge)

visit ~ Britt Runyon Artist Website to purchase images

About Britt Runyon

A New Mexico based free roaming outdoor digital photographer, always on the qui vive for what Nature and humans provide.
This entry was posted in New Mexico, Rio Grande del Norte National Monument. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *