Kamchatkan volcanoes

Kamchatka is best known for it's volcanoes. There are about 30 active volcanoes on the peninsula and a great many more inactive volcanoes. Obviously the 30 active volcanoes are well known and it is not too difficult to obtain information about them. The inactive volcanoes are much harder to research. Some extinct volcanoes are nothing more than a small mountain, similar in appearance to the surrounding mountains. Others still stand dominantly as giant cones.

On this site I will try to introduce to you as many Kamchatkan volcanoes as I can find. Because often several volcanoes can be found in a single complex I put some together under a single entry. To make them stand out I put their names in bold. If the name appears underlined there is a link to a separate entry of that volcano on this page. Click on the images to go to the picture site of the volcano! Apart from my own pictures I got a number of pictures from Lutz Kirchner. He was more often on Kamchatka and had much better photography weather than I had ! Thanks Lutz.

Aak and Arik volcanoes

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Aak (a.k.a. Aag) and Arik are two small extinct volcanoes west of Koryaksky volcano. They form a connection between the the Dzenzur-Zhupanovsky massif and the Koryaksky-Avachinsky-Kozhelsky massif, making it into a single volcanic arch. There is probably no mineralogy here.

Akademia Nauk volcano

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Akademia Nauk (Academy of Sciences) volcano is often called Karymsky, which is wrong. Karymsky is a large stratovolcano just north of Lake Karymskoye. The lake itself is the caldera of Akademia Nauk volcano. Both volcanoes are part of the same complex, but defenitely not identical. The Akademia Nauk volcano was formed late pleictocene in the so called third eruptive phase of Karymsky. It started life as a small stratovolcano inside the Odnoboky caldera. Later Akademia Nauk  collapsed and became a caldera itself.

Akademia Nauk is still active On january the 2nd 1996 a phraetomagmatic eruption occured. This eruption coincided with an eruption of Karymsky volcano. Pumice and pyroclastic sediments blocked the Karysmkaya river. During this eruption the Novogodny peninsula was formed in lake Karymskoye. In craters and vents of this island interesting fumarol mineralogy was formed. Only five month later, in may, the river broke through and washed away this locality. 

See Karymsky below

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Arik volcano

See 'Aak and Arik' entry.

Avachinsky volcano

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Avachinsky volcano can not be missed when you are on Kamchatka. It is the middle of three volcanoes standing just north of Petropavlovsk. It is a 2151 meter high somma volcano. A somma volcano is formed when the top of a large stratovolcano is blown off, yielding a huge crater. Inside the crater a new cone is formed. Avachinskaya volcano has prominent fumarolic activity and the fumarol plumes can be seen be seen from inside the town. Avachinsky, together with Koryaksky form the biggest volcanic risks to Petropavlovsk. So far Avachinsky only showed mild explosive eruptions with most ash falling on it's slopes and only tiny lava flows. But being a somma volcano it did have a much more violent past.

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Bakenin volcano

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Bakenin volcano is an extinct stratovolcano about 200 kilometers from Petropavlovsk. It is situated in the Ganalsky range. You will most likely see Bakenin when you visit Kamchatka. It can most likely be seen from the airplane arriving on Kamchatka. With clear weather the volcano can also be seen from the road between Elizovo and Petropavlovsk, or from the main road near Koryaki. The best view you will get driving up north towards Milkovo. From this road the pictures where taken. You will also get a nice view on it's neighbour, Novo-Bakenin volcano. To actually hike to the volcano from this road would be a multi day effort. 

Volcanological and geological information about Bakenin is welcome!

Berezovaya volcano

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No less than THREE volcanoes have this name. The good thing is that one of them was soon renamed Karymsky and almost nobody knows it as Berezovaya anymore. The bad thing is that the other two Berezovaya's are located very close to each other (and to Karymsky). Both volcanoes are extinct. On the picture above is a volcano which is today mapped as 'Berezovski volcano". V.L. Vlodavets suggested back in 1938 that this volcano would be named "Sukhoi volcano" after Sukhoi lake, close to it. The 'real' Berezovaya volcano, the second one, is located closer to Maly Semiachik and Berezovski river. Judging from recent maps this change of names never took place.

Bezymianny volcano

Bezymianny volcano is located southwest of Kluchevskoy volcano. Bezymianny is a stratovolcano with a destroyed summit. The summit was destroyed in a huge Plinian eruption on 30 march 1956. Where the summit once was is now a 2.8km crater and in 1967 a new volcanic dome, the Novy dome, was formed inside.

Bezymyanny volcano has fumarolic activity. Temperatures of fumarolic gasses run as high as 550C. Shcherbinatite was discovered in a fumarole on the Novy dome. 

Bolshoi Semiachik volcano

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Bolshoi Semiachik located northeast of Maly Semiachik. If you want to study the phenomenon 'complex volcano' this is your subject! No less than 22 individual volcanic structures, of which 7 (!) more or less cone shaped stratovolcanoes make up this complex volcano. 

Very briefly Bolshoi Semiachik consists of a large 10km diameter caldera with the name Bolshoi Semiachik. Inside this caldera are our seven intergrown stratovolcanoes and a few other volcanoes: the Zapadny Barany-, Vostochny Barany-, Popkov-, Plosky-, Plosko-, Kruglen'ky-, , Problematichny-, Tsentral Semiachik-, Burlyashchy- and Zubchatka volcanoes.  These are only 10 of 22+ volcanic structures making up the Bolshoi Semiachik volcano. Zubchatka is the largest of the strusctures with an absolute height of  1720 meter. 

Bolshoi Semiachik is an active volcano, but no certain historical eruptions are known. The complex does house the largest fumarole complex of Kamchatka. Mud pots fumarole fields and solfatares can be found everywhere in the complex and this should guarantee nice mineralogy. From the helicopter I could see large yellow patches.....

Dvor volcano

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Dvor is a relic of a huge caldera. Only the north wall of this caldera still stands. In the old Dvor caldera are two active newer volcanoes, Karymsky and Akademia Nauk.

Dvugorby volcano

The Dvugorby volcano is a relict of an old volcano close to Gorely volcano. It has Andesite and Andesite-Dacite lava flows.

Dzenzur volcano

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Dzenzur is located north of the Avachinsky and Koryak volcanoes, visible from Petropavlovsk. It forms the western part of the Dzenzur-Zhupanovsky complex. 
Dzenzur does not really look like the classic conic stratovolcano. This can be attributed to two factors. Lavaflows are mainly directed south and southwest, due to faults. This causes the volcano to be assymetrical. More important in shaping the volcano is it's peculiar history. The volcano was formed in upper pleistocene. A perfect normal cone was formed, but then a large period of inactivity started. The cone eroded and this caused the assymetrical look. Today Dzenzur is an active volcano, allthough historical eruptions are not known. There is fumarolic activity on the southeastern slope of the volcano.

See also Zhupanovsky volcano

Gamchen Volcano

The Gamchen volcano is a complex volcano. The Yuzhno Gamchen volcano, Severny Gamchen volcano , Molodoi volcano, Barany volcano,, Menner volcano and Schmidt volcano are all part of the complex. Allthough the volcano is active, no historic eruptions are known. There is also limited fumarolic activity. Most (all?) fumaroles are low temperature 41-80C solfatares. The composition of fumarolic gases and therefore the mineralogy is not yet known.

Gora 1004

I'm not sure what to do with this locality. Gora 1004 is a cinder cone on Dolina  Tolbachik (Tolbachik valley). Therefore it should be listed under Tolbachik. The cinder cone is rich in lead-copper fumarol minerals. The reason why I treat this as a separate locality is that the cone is older than 2000 years. This is a major difference to the recent Novy Tolbachik cinder cones.

Anglesite Antlerite Atacamite Chrysocolla Linarite Molybdomenite Pyromorfite Tenorite Wulfenite

Copper and lead minerals in old fumarolic fields of Mt. 1004, Kamchatka., Serafimova et al, Volcanology-and-Seismology. 1994. 16(3), pp 259-274.

Gorely volcano
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The Gorely volcano is a large shield volcano located just northwest of Mutnovsky. In fact one of his old names is Pravaya Mutnovskaya volcano, meaning the Right Mutnovsky (seen from the north). Other names are Asacha volcano and Vtoraya Mutnovskaya. The structure of the Gorely volcano dates back to the early Pleictocene. At the end of the Pleictocene all that was left of Gorely was a huge 13x12km Caldera filled with lava from earlier eruptions. Between 6000 and 2000 years ago Gorely became a quiet volcano with occasional explosive eruptions. Even the last 2000 years is Gorely a relative quiet volcano with only occasional explosive eruptions and a few lava flows. Gorely has a height of  1829 meter and comprises of 3 merged cones  and about 11 craters and 40 volcanic vents.

So far I have no references of specific fumarol minerals from Gorely, but they are certainly there. Gorely has many gas and steam eruptions. Elements detected in Gorely's magmatic gasses are H2S, HF, HCl, SO2 and substances containing Ca, Al, Mg, NH3, K and Fe.

Ichinsky volcano

More information will follow!

Ilinsky volcano

The Ilinsky volcano is located along the northeastern shore of Ozero Kurilskoye on the southern tip of Kamchatka. It is a 1578 meter high stratovolcano. On the north side Ilinsky has two very characteristic huge lava flows. The last eruption was in 1901 and the Ilinskaya has no notable fumarolic activity.

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Kambalny volcano

The Kambalny volcano is located just south of Ozero Kurilskoye on the southern tip of Kamchatka. It is a 2156m high stratovolcano with five Holocene cindercones on it's slopes. 

The fumarol mineralogy of Kambalny has no been studied so far (in 1991). But there is surely major thermal and fumarolic activity. For a start there is a  geothermal powerstation in the Pauzhetka river valley. On the northwestern slope of the volcano is strong fumarolic activity.

Karymsky volcano

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At the moment Karymsky is one of the most active volcanoes on Kamchatka.. Karymsky is located along the east coast of Kamchatka just south of the Kronotski Zapovednik (national park). Kamrymsky volcano on itself is a stratovolcano, but is situated in a complex of older inactive volcanoes of the Karymsky complex. The Karymsky volcanic complex stretches out between the Zhupanovski complex in the southwest and the maly Semiachik complex in the northeast. Most prominent of the karymsky complex's extinct volcanoes  is the giant caldera wall of Dvor volcano, just north of Karymsky. Less visible, but far more interesting is Akademia Nauk volcano. Other volcanoes in the complex are much less known. The Lageryi volcano is located only a small dome on the shore of lake Karymskoe. The Razlaty volcano is a flat volcano, just south of the lake. Sobolinyi volcano is located just north of Dvor. Other extinc volcanoes in the complex are the Obnoboki volcano and the Kraini volcano. The Sukhoi or Berezovaya volcano north of Dvor is also part of the Karymsky complex.

The Karymsky volcano is a 600 meter high (relative, 1536m absolute) stratovolcano. The volcano generally shows efflusive eruptions with an occasional explosive eruption. 

Beliankin volcano is located southwest of the Akedemia Nauk volcano. Beliankin is a partial caldera, of which the northeast part has been destroyed.It was a mainly dacitic volcano, which at some time changed to a basaltic and andesitic volcano.

The Kraini volcano is located west of Beliankin volcano. Kraini looks like a caldera, but is more a collapsed crater than a true caldera. Kraini was a andesitic volcano.

The Odnoboki volcano is an extinct volcano southeast of the Akademia Nauk volcano. The Odnoboki is separated from the Akademia Nauk by a gorge.Odnoboki is also much older than Akademia Nauk, the latter was formed inside the caldera of Odnoboki. It was an andesitic volcano which produced many large lavaflows.

The Razlatyi volcano is located southeast of Karymsky and deposited basalt and andesite basalt.

The Lagernyi volcano is a very small volcano about 3 kilometers south of the summit of Karymsky. It is a bipyroxene andesite basalt lavadome.

The Sobolinyi volcano is localted north of Dvor. The only thing left of Sobolinyi volcano is a partial caldera. Only a very few remnants of this volcano can be found. I missed it completely when flying in the area, so I expect it would be not much more than a few single small outcrops.

Visiting Karymsky is a serious efford. There is a 'road' to Karymsky from Koryaki village. I haven't tried the road, but I suppose a tracked vehicle or at least a sturdy Ural truck is needed. Even then it would take the better part of a whole day to get there. A helicopter is by far the best option. If you have less budget and defenitely want to see Karymsky there is the option of Nalychevo valley. This valley is located north east of Zhupanovki volcano and can be reached by (4x4) car. From some vantage points of Nalychevo valley Karymsky can be seen from a great distance. Bring your binoculars!

mineralogy (including Akademia Nauk)
Aluminium Anhydrite Blodite Bornite Chalcocite Chalcopyrite Chlorapatite Copper Cordierite Cryolite Cryptohalite Fluorite Gypsum Halite Ilmenite Iron Labradorite Malladrite Pyrite Pyrrhotite Ralstonite Rutile Salmiac Sulphur Weberite Zircon


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Kikhpinych volcano

The Kikhpinych volcano is actually a complex of different volcanoes. The younger Kikhpinych volcano, comprising of two Holocene basaltic cones, Mount Pik, which is the older basement volcano, Zheltaya Sopka is a more southern dacitic volcano and the Molodoi Kikhpinych volcano. The Molodoi Kikhpinych consists of the Zapadny and Savich cones. The Savish cone has fumarolic activity, but the gasses it produces are mostly of atmospheric composition with only very slightly elevated levels of CO2.

Finally Valley of the Geysirs are also part of the Kikhpinych volcano. The Valley is described in a separate entry below.

Kiziman volcano

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The Kiziman volcano is located north of Lake Kronotsky. The stratovolcano is 2485 meters high and stands on the junction between the Central Kamchatkan depression and Eastern Ridge horst. The volcano is active, with last eruption dating back to 1927. Most important about Kiziman is it's intense fumarolic activity. Most fumaroles can be found on the northeastern slope. On the picture above a fumarol can be seen in the west slope. This particular fumarol is can also be seen on many older pictures of the volcano.

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andesite rock

Klyuchevskoi volcano
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Klyuchevskoi is the highest volcano of Kamchatka with 4760 meters. The summit crater has a diameter of 700 meters and is constantly active. More characteristic of Kluchevskoy is the tendency for lateral eruptions. The slopes of the volcano are covered with lateral lava flows and cinder cones. Klyuchevskoi also has significant fumarol activity. The temperature of the fumarols vary from 50 to 900C. Apart from the common fumarolic gasses elements measured in the gas include Cu, Pb, Mo, Zn, Bi and Ag. 

There are at least 31different fumarol minerals known from Klyuchevskoy. I'd like to present them here, but I have not yet managed to dig up the required references. If you have the references below, you would do me a great favor to let me know what mineralogy is mentioned.

Basharina L.A. Exhalation of Adventive Craters of Klyuchevskoy Volcano at various Stages of Lava cooling // Volcanism of Kamchatka and some other regions of the USSR. Moscow:USSR Acad Sci:.Press, 1963. p169-227 (in Russian)

Serafimova Ye.K. Mineralogy of Sublimates of Kamchatka volcanoes. Moscow; "Nauka", 1979 167pp (in Russian)

Komarova volcano

The Komarov volcano is located on the Gamchen Ridge. It is a complex volcano, partially covered by the Gamchen volcano. The Komarov volcano has quite extnsive fumarolic activity. Gasses where sampled in 1967. Back then gas temperature was 93C. The condensates consisted mainly of Ca,  Na, K and NH4 sulfates, chlorides and bicarbonates.

Koryaksky volcano

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Named after the local Koryak people, Koryaksky volcano is a 3436 meter high stratovolcano. It is located just north of Petropavlovsk. Koryaksky is active and shows occasional explosive eruptions. Fumarolic activity is present, but by far not as prominent as on Avachinsky. A fissure on the northwestern slope formed in the 1956 eruption occasionally shows fumarolic activity.

Koshelev volcano

The Koshelev volcano is located on the southern tip of Kamchatka. It is a complex volcano made up of five big volcanic structures with an absolute height of 1812 meters. The five volcanic structures are the ancient Koshelev shield volcano, the Western Koshelev stratovolcano, the Valentin stratovolcano, the Eastern Koshelev stratovolcano with a flat summit and the central Koshelev stratovolcano.The Western Koshelev has a caldera and the Central Koshelev has an active crater.

Koshelev does have fumarolic activity, although I have not found any mineral names yet. Inside the crater of the Valentin volcano is a thermal field called Gremuchiye Kluchi. Here are at least 40 fumaroles with temperatures of 120-153C. Many of them are situated on the appropriately named Fumarolnaya extrusion. A second thermal field is located in the caldera of the Western Koshelev volcano. As far as I know here are mainly hot springs and mudpots with water temperatures up to 90C.

Krasheninnikov volcano

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Krashennikov volcano is a large complex volcano located not far north from Uzon Caldera. The volcano consists of two major craters and number of cinder cones. All this is located in a huge ancient caldera. Allthough Krashennikov is an active volcano no historical eruptions are known. Fumarolic acivity is present but weak and low temperature.

Kronotsky volcano

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The Kronotsky volcano is located 10km east of Lake Kronotsky. The perfectly cone shaped stratovolcano has an absolute height of 3528 meters. There is fumarolic activity on Kronotsky, but gasses where never sampled and there is no information about possible mineralogy.

Ksudach volcano
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The Ksudach volcano is also known as the Stubel volcano or Vonyuchy Khrebet. The volcano is located about 70km southwest of Mutnovsky and about 30km southwest of Khodutka volcano.The morphology of Ksudach is pretty complicated. Basically the activity of Ksudach has four phases. A phase starts with the formation of a volcano and ends with the formation of a caldera. So Ksudach basically exists of four volcanoes (Ksudach-!, II, III and IV) and four calderas. Since all these stages are separated in time and not so much spatially it became a complicated misture of relics from volcanoes and calderas. In phase three there where even three caldera's formed, called Caldera III-1, III-2 and III-3.
Best known 'recent' structure are the Stubel cones. Although they where formed as early as 1400 years ago, they are the most active part of Ksudach. One big crater was formed in the 1907 eruption

Ksudach show considerable fumarolic activity on the Paryashchy Utes and Paryashchy Greben' extrusions. Allthough the fumaroles are typcally low temperature mofettes (87-90C). It seems these bring only poisonous gasses an little if any mineralogy.

Maly Semiachik volcano

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The Maly Semiachik volcano is located northeast of  Karymsky volcano. This 1560 meter high volcano is actually composed of three volcanoes. The oldest and highest Paleo-Semiachik, the middle Meso-Semiachik and the smaller Ceno-Semiachik volcanoes. Of these only the Ceno-Semiachik is still active. The Ceno-Semiachik has a single crater, called the Troitsky crater, which is filled with a sulphuric acid crater lake. There are no reliable reports of historic eruptions of Maly Semiachik, but locals have reported ash and steam clouds in the 1850s. Most interesting is the composition of the water inside the crater lake. Both composition and temperature change in time. The temperature can be anything from 25 to 66C and it usually in the 30s. The pH is mostly around 0.7 to 0.5. Mineralisation is high and in the order of 30 to 50g/l. Besides elements such as Na, K, Ca, Fe and Al metals like Mn, Sb, Cu, Ni and Cd are present. The fluctuations in the values are caused by fluctuations in the underwater fumarolic activity.

Mutnovsky volcano
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The Mutnovsky volcano is one of my favorite volcanoes. There are two reasons. It has large scale fumarolic activity and the volcano is easily reached by a comfortable dirt road all the way to it's base. Mutnovsky is a complex volcano 2323 meters high. Mutnovsky actually consists of four stratovolcanoes with numerous cinder cones and lava flows around them. The basement of the Mutnovsky complex consists of volcanic rocks from the nearby active Gorely volcano as well as of pliocene rocks from the extinct Pereval volcano and the also extinct Zhirosky volcano.
In the middle Pleistocene the first volcano of the complex, the Akhomten volcano was formed in the eastern part of the present day Mutnovsky complex.  Around the same time the Otkhodyashchy volcano was formed in the northwest part. At the beginning of the Upper Pleistocene a new cone, the Yuzhny Mutnovsky was formed on thr western slope of the Akhomten volcano, while the Severny Mutnovsky cone developed in the pass between Akhomten and Otkhodyashchy. Subsequent explosive eruptions exploded to two Mutnovsky cones into bigger craters and the Akhomten volcano even became a Somma volcano.

The mineralogically most interesting part of Mutnovsky are the fumaroles. They are concentrated in two isolated fumarolic field in the Severny Mutnovsky crater, the Verkhneye and Donnoye fumarolic fields. There is a third small concentrations of fumaroles on the western slope in the Aktivnaya Voronka crater.. The Verkhneye fumarol field is located in the northwestern part of the crater. The Donnoye fumarol field is a former crater lake. The highest temperatures of Mutnovsky's fumarols is about 500C.

Alunite Alunogene Anhydrite Aphthitalite Cannizzarite Chalcopyrite Cinnabar Cristobalite Gypsum Halotrichite Hematite Kudriavite Lawrencite Marcasite Mascagnite Millosevichite Molysite Mutnovskite Opal Pickeringite Pyrite Pyrrhotite Salmiac Sassolite Sulphur Tazieffite Thenardite

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Opala volcano

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Opala volcano is located about 70 kilometers west of Ust-Bolsheretsk. The volcano is also known as Apalskaya volcano and Apachinskaya volcano. This stratovolcano has a  height of 2475 meter. Opala is a very old volcano, which is also reflected to it's western location. But it still active. Opala was formed in the Middle-Upper pleictocene and it was a basalt volcano with strong andesitic eruptions. At the end of the pleistocene the Opala volcano was destroyed in a giant eruption. The remnants of this old Opala are still visible as huge caldera of 15km across. The new stratovolcano we now know as Opala grew inside the caldera in the late plesitocene and holocene. This new cone was developed in four stages. An early effusive andesite-basalt stage, an explosive pyroclasts and lava stage in which the majority of the volcano was built, a second effusive stage and finally a more quiet stage with occasional andesite-dacite and dacite flows. Important substructures of Opala volcano are the Skalistaya dome and the Stolovaya volcanic cone. A few centuries ago a major explosion took place at Opala's southeastern slope. The explosive crater it created is known as the Barany amphitheater

So far no fumarol activity is noted on Opala. There are only rock forming minerals on Opala such as Labradorite and Olivine.

Sheveluch volcano
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Sheveluch is Kamchatka's most northern active volcano. To see Sheveluch you do have a nice vantage point from Kluchi village. Shevelush is also Kamchatka's biggest volcanic structure with a diameter close to 500km! It's height is 3283m. Sheveluch is a complex volcano, which is divided into three structures. The Stary  Sheveluch (Old), the old caldera and the Molodoy Sheveluch (Young). Stary Sheveluch is a mainly andesitic stratovolcano. The summit of the Stary Sheveluch is called Glavnaya, or Main summit. There are several named andesite domes on the slopes of Stary Sheveluch, they are called the Karan, Sherokhovataya and Krasnaya domes. The south slope of the Stary Sheveluch is destroyed by the formation of a 9km caldera. Inside this caldera, a little northwest of it's center lay's the active part of Sheveluch, the Molodoy Sheveluch. At first Molodoy Sheveluch consisted of several domes inside the caldera. The Tsentralny and Suelich dome where best known. But in the 1967 eruption of Molodoy Sheveluch all the domes where destroyed and replaced by a double crater. This makes Molodoy Sheveluch a Somma volcano, combined with the Stary Sheveluch stratovolcano. Sheveluch is one of the most active vocanoes for the past 10 millenia.

Sheveluch also has extended fumarolic activity. There at least 10 fumarol fields, most of them concentrated in the Novy Crater, formed in the 1964 eruption.

Alunogene Anhydrite Blodite Cristobalite Epsomite Gypsum Halotrichite Millosevichite Opal Pickeringite Sassolite Sulphur Thenardite

Skalistaya volcano
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The Skalistaya sopka is located about 6 kilometers ESE of Gorely's summit. Skalistaya is an ancient volcanic relict. In fact all that stands in the old volcanic vent and two andesite/andesite-dacite lavaflows. 

Tolbachik volcano

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Cone-1    Plosky Tolbachik
Cone-2    Ostry Tolbachik
Cone-3    Southern Breakthrough

The Tolbachik volcano is located at the south of the massif of big volcanoes in central Kamchatka, to which also Klyuchevskoy and Bezymianny  belong to. "Tolbachik volcano" as such does not exist. It is a complex of two volcanoes, the Plosky Tolbachik, meaning flat Tolbachik and the Ostry Tolbachik, meaning pointed Tolbachik. The Ostry Tolbachik is an extinct stratovolcano. Connected to it's west slope lays the lower Plosky volcano. It looks like a flat topped mountain, but in fact it's huge crater is filled with ice and snow. 'Plosky' (careful to use the name Plosky since there also exists a Plosky volcano between Karymsky and Zhupanovsky!!) is an active volcano with the 1976 eruption as absolute highlight of Kamchatkan eruptions in recent times. Thankfully the volcano is located in a very remote area. During this eruption, which lasted about a year, not only Plosky emitted lavaflows. A great fissure stretching southwest of the volcano opened up and erupted lava. The famous eruption is therefore called the GTFE, or Great Tolbachik Fissure Eruption. A huge moon like lavafield was created. Along the fissure some kilometers southwest of the actual volcano four cindercones where formed. They are now known as Novy Tolbachik or New Tolbachik volcano. Novy Tolbachik can be devided into a Southern and Northern Breakthrough. Three cones, numbered 1 to 3 make up the northern breakthrough, the fourth cone the southern. These cones display a unique fumarolic activity and are type locality for many famous Tolbachik fumarol minerals like Pyipite, Sophiite, Tolbachite etc etc. There is a much lesser known fifth cinder cone, located between the Northern and Southern Breakthrough. It is called Gora 1004 and it was not formed during the GTFE, but over 2000 years ago. See separate entry for Gora 1004 mineralogy

All cinder cones have fumarolic activity. Some of these individual fumarols have names, like Yadovitaya, Novaya or Galavnoye fumarol. Some of the mineras below occur at only one fumarol or only on one cinder cone. Most fumarol minerals are not very stable and their formation depends on physical and chemical properties of the volcanic gas. These parameters differ over time. Fumarols get hotter, colder, more or less acidic etc. This has an influence on the paragenese. So splitting out the mineral list below to individual cones and fumarols only makes sense if you describe these properties at the time of the find. That is quite a job, so maybe later :-)

careful! Many Tolbachik minerals are very hygroscopic and will be destroyed quickly when they come into contact with air. You can best keep them inside glass vials that are molten sealed. The second best option is to kit your micromount box so it is sealed from the air. Even then I store my samples under vacuum. Never put silicagel near them, the minerals will draw the water from the silicagel, making your problem only worse.

Alarsite Allochalcoselite Altaite Aluminite Aluminium Alumoklyuchevskite Alunogene Andesine Anglesite Anorthite Aphthitalite Aragonite Arcanite Atacamite Atlasovite Avdoninite Averievite Avogadrite Bassanite Belloite Bischofite Boothite Bradaczekite Brass Burnsite Chalcanthite Chalcocyanite Chlorartinite Chloromagnesite Chloromenite Chlorothionite Coparsite Cotunnite Cyanochroite Dolerophanite Dypingite Eriochalcite Euchlorine Fedotovite Filatovite Georgbokiite Gold Gypsum Halite Hematite Hydromagnesite Ilinskite Johillerite Kamchatkite Klyuchevskite Labradorite Lammerite Langbeinite Lead Leningradite Lesukite Malladrite Melanothallite Moissanite Nabokoite Natrite Natrochalcite Nesquehonite Orthoclase Parageorgbokiite Paratacamite Pauflerite Piypite Ponomarevite Ralstonite Sellaite Shcherbinaite Sophiite Sulphur Sylvite Tenorite Thermonatrite Tolbachite Urusovite Vergasovaite Vlodavetsite


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atlasovite-tolbachik.jpg (7130 bytes)
avdoninite-tolbachik.jpg (18171 bytes)
bassanite.jpg (103659 bytes)
belloite.jpg (883062 bytes)
boothite.jpg (27739 bytes)
Boothite / Fedotovite
bradaczekite-tolb.jpg (58166 bytes)
burnsite-tolbachik.jpg (4667 bytes)
chlorartinite.jpg (18412 bytes)
cotunnite.jpg (47310 bytes)
dolerophanite.jpg (27441 bytes)
euchlorine.jpg (37601 bytes)
georgbokiite.jpg (56276 bytes)
Ilinskite.jpg (66414 bytes)

kamchatkite.jpg (57511 bytes)
Klyuchevskite.jpg (59263 bytes)
leningradite.jpg (44450 bytes)
lesukite.jpg (26391 bytes)
nabokoite.jpg (52790 bytes)
natrochalcite.jpg (41519 bytes)
Natrochalcite / Fedotovite
piipite.jpg (39871 bytes)
 Ponomarevite.jpg (32187 bytes)
sophiite.jpg (24535 bytes)
tenorite.jpg (41812 bytes)
Tenorite / Hematite
tolbachite.jpg (848962 bytes)
shcherbinaite.jpg (45115 bytes)
Urusovite.jpg (36510 bytes)
vergasovite.jpg (49577 bytes)

Some rocks:

lapilli.jpg (610958 bytes)
Plagioclase Lapilli
bomb.jpg (20476 bytes)
Volcanic slag
bomb2.jpg (30508 bytes)
Volcanic bomb


Ushkovsky volcano
ushkovsky.jpg (39386 bytes)

Ushkovsky volcano is a complex volcano in the northern Klyuchevskoy group. Ushkovsky looks like Tolbachik in appearance. It consists of a conic stratovolcano known as Krestovsky volcano with a height of 4108 meters. Attached to it is the 3943 meter flat topped Ushkovsky volcano. Ushkovsky is also known as Ploskye Sopki (Flat Hill) because of it's appearance. In fact the Ushkovsky part is a large ice filled caldera type volcano. Inside the caldera are two named cinder cones, Herz and Gorshkov. The comparisation with Tolbachik goes even further than the morphology. Ushkovsky also has a graben structure stretching to the south-southwest with numerous cinder cones and lava flows as evidence of large fissure eruptions. 
There is large scale fumarolic activity on Ushkovsky, but generally temperatures do not exceed 83C. Inside the caldera are solfataras.

Opal, Sulfer

Uzon caldera

taunzhits-uzon.jpg (40968 bytes)

The Uzon caldera is a large caldera not far from the valley of the geysers, just south of Lake Kronotsky. The caldera is a very surreal place with many hot springs,  fumarols and rich vegetation. The place is mainly known as type locality for Alacranite and Uzonite, but it houses a vast array of interesting minerals.

Actinolite Alacranite Albite Allophane Alunite Alunogene Analcime Antimonite Arsenopyrite Barite Beidellite Bornite Calcite Chalcocite Chalcopyrite Cinnabar Copper Covellite Cristobalite Fluorite Gold Gypsum Halloysite-10A Hematite Kaolinite Magnetite Marcasite Mercury Metacinnabar Montmorillonite Opal Orpiment Pickeringite Pyrite Pyrrhotite Quartz Realgar Scolecite Scorodite Silver Sphalerite Stilbite-Ca Sulphur Sylvite Tridymite Tschermigite Uzonite Zinc

alacranite.jpg (45226 bytes) uzonite.jpg (28394 bytes)
Alacranite            Uzonite

Active Volcanoes of Kamchatka

Active Volcanoes of Kamchatka, volumes 1 and 2, edited by S.A. Fedotov, 1991.
Ore Deposits of the USSR, V.I. Smirnov, 1977 Vol II p338

Vachkazhets volcano

vachkazhets.jpg (32787 bytes)

More info about this extinct volcano is welcome!

Valley of the Geysers
(Dolina Geyserov)

dg01.jpg (116998 bytes)

The Valley of the Geysers is a very remote place southeast of  Lake Kronotsky. It was only discovered in 1941 when the geologist party of Tatyana Ustinova where lost and stumbled across this valley. In fact the valley is only short distance away from the equally famous  Uzon caldera. Both structures are not geologically related. The Valley of the Geysers belongs to the Kikhpinych volcano. 

Not much is known about the mineralogy of the Valley of the Geysers. Red and yellow colored rocks are everywhere and called 'geyserite'. The waters and gasses of the complex do contain a number of elements. Overall salt content is below 2.4g/l. Known elements in the system are Na, B, As, Cl, Li, Cs, Rb, Sb, Au, Hg, Bi, Pb, Sn, Zn, Cu, Ba and Sr.

geiserite.jpg (56116 bytes)

Vilyuchinski volcano

viluichinski-1.jpg (29204 bytes)

Vilyuchinky volcano is a large extinct volcano located on the southern shore of Avacha bay. The volcano is prominently visible from Petropavlovsk. It can be fairly easy reached by car, using the gravelroad from Paratunka to Mutnovsky power station. 

Zheltovsky volcano
sheltovsky.jpg (15926 bytes)

The Zheltovsky volcano (A.k.a. Utashchut) is a twinned stratovolcano of the southern group. It is located about 16 kilometers northwest of Ozero Kurilskoye. Zheltovsky is 1953 meters high. The volcano consists od a relative old stratovolcano with a somma like crater in which a newer volcanic cone has grown. In 1972 Zheltovsky had a brief spell of intense fumarolic activity. Solfatara's where noted and sampled on the slope of the biggest extrusive dome. The gas temperature was 100C and the gas contained small amounts of Zn, Pb, Cd and Cu as well as HF, HCl, H2S, SO2, CO2 and CH4-

Zhupanovsky volcano

zhupan3.gif (178815 bytes)

Zhupanovsky volcano is a good example of a complex volcano. It actually consists of four intergrown volcanoes, called Zhupanovsky I, II, III and IV. If that is not enough there are also a number of extinct volcanoes in the same mountain. The Yurievsky volcano, Tetyaev volcano and the Sirenevy volcano. This entire complex is also attached to the Dzenzur volcano, which is also part of the Zhupanovksy-Dzenzur volcanic complex. All these volcanoes form an arch together with Aak, Arik, Koryaksky, Avachinskaya and Kozhelsky volcanoes.

Zhupanovsky is located rather close to the town of Petropavlovsk. It would be dominantly visible on the skyline if not the Koryaksky and Avachinsky volcanoes where blocking the view. So far Zhupanovsky looks impressive, but is rather docile. Eruptions are explosive but small. Historic eruptions date back to 1776, 1882, 1925, 1929, 1940 and 1956-7. Fumarolic activity is present on Zhupanovsky volcano and is especially strong in the II crater.

bezymianny_zimina.jpg (14084 bytes)

Zimina volcano is located north northeast of Tolbachik and comprises of two stratovolcanoes, the Bolshaya Zimina and Malaya Zimina volcanoes. There are no historic eruption known of Zimina.


Active Volcanoes of Kamchatka, volumes 1 and 2, edited by S.A. Fedotov, 1991.
(if you are interested in Kamchatkan Volcanoes, these books are an absolute must. They are full of maps, diagrams, pictures and very informative texts. Unfortunately they are out of print very hard to get, even in Russia).

The Karymski Group of Volcanoes, by V.I. Vlodavets, Bulletin of the Kamchatkan Volcanological Station No.7, (1938?)

Petrology of Ejecta Produced by the Akademii Nauk Caldera Eruption of January 2-, 1996, by E.N. Grib et al, Volc Seis., 1998, Vol 19, pp 605-635

Ore minerals in the Products of the Eruptions of Karymsky volcanic Center in 1996-1998 yy. by E.N. Grib et al

Large Tolbachik Fissure Eruption, S.A. Fedotov et al, 1984 [in Russian]