Sunday, June 8, 2014

Mt. Etna

June 4, 2014

Mount Etna is Europe's highest and most active volcano.  Towering above the city of Catania on the island of Sicily, it has been growing for about 500,000 years and is in the midst of a series of eruptions that began in 2001. It has experienced a variety of eruption styles, including violent explosions and voluminous lava flows. More than 25% of Sicily's population lives on Etna's slopes, and it is the main source of income for the island, both from agriculture (due to its rich volcanic soil) and tourism.
* * * * *

“A’ Muntagna” (“the mountain” in local dialect) has always dominated the lives of those who live in its shadow: Its lava flows and dust clouds bring destruction, but they also enrich the soil, making the lower slopes and the surrounding plains some of the most fertile regions in Sicily, and spawning vast expanses of vines and citrus plantation. The periodic eruptions have been well documented through history, from the tales of Pindar to the modern day. Recent eruptions have been spectacular in their nature, though quite safe as they start far from inhabited areas. Whenever Etna erupts, journalists and travellers are drawn from all over the world to admire (from a safe distance) the unique sight of the smoking craters and snaking lava flows, which are visible from miles away. 

* * * * *

House buried in 1983 eruption


1 comment:

  1. It looks like the Craters of the Moon. Michael probably felt like he was back home.