Sunday, November 28, 2010

Dateline: Aquiares. News: Smoking volcano

The last time Turrialba Volcano erupted was in 1866. The 19th century was a busy one for Turrialba, when the 10,958-foot volcano blew its top no less than seven times. The 20th century was quieter, if only for the Turrialba Volcano and its three craters. Sometime in the 1990’s we drove part way up and then hiked to the volcano’s rim to peer into its vastness.
Then in 2001 the central crater started spouting fumaroles. But visitors were still welcome. In January 2007 we drove with the Aged P’s to the very top and stood on the Mirador as wisps of smoke danced before us. On the way back we stopped at a lovely lodge and drank hot chocolate laced with tequila, a relatively unknown but delicious combination.
That has all stopped since January of this year when Turrialba Volcano spewed ash and created acid rain that forced the lodge to shut down, and 2 villages to be evacuated.
This afternoon the volcano was sending up snowy white smoke, surprising in its whiteness, vivid against the blue tropical sky. It is always a good thing to see a volcano before one’s siesta.

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