The aerial view of Mount Ngauruhoe volcano in New Zealand reveals its young and beautiful crater that last erupted in 1973 and 1975. Its steep slopes are covered with colorful ash and pumice. The 2300 m (7500 ft) high and perfectly shaped stratovolcano consists of layers of explosive andesite lava and pyroclastic tephra. Although it is a majestic volcano on its own right, it is geologically a secondary cone of Mount Tongariro. This young vent in the Taupo volcanic zone on the Central Plateau of the North Island first erupted about 2500 years ago and is active ever since with more than 70 eruptive episodes since 1839.
The Tongariro volcanic chain is located on a two million years old plateau of the huge Taupo volcano. Taupo’s historic eruptions even influenced the climate in Europe. At a depth of 75 km (47 mi) the Pacific Ocean seafloor plate subsides beneath the Indo-Australian tectonic plate. Continuously heating up it reaches the melting point at a depth of 140 km (87 mi). This rising magma feeds the volcanoes and causes the episodic eruptions of varying intensity.
The deep-blue Two Lakes are water-filled explosion craters in the barren land surrounding Mount Ngauruhoe.

March 2002
Pentax MZ5, Pentax 50 mm, f/5.6, 1/500 sec, Kodak Ektachrome E6, ISO 100, aerial photography with removed aircraft door
New Zealand Gallery » Ngauruhoe