Monday, March 22, 2010

Yes, I Know, Yellowstone is on Top of a Volcano!

Let's get a few things out of the way before we discuss the caldera problem.

Yellowstone is not in Arizona, California, Colorado, or Detroit.  Still not sure where it is?  Like my mother used to say, you'll never learn unless you look it up yourself.  May I suggest for the geographically impaired?

No, I won't be running the park.  Bless the gentleman who thought that would be my job description.  Yellowstone is slightly bigger than a KOA campground which I could run if I was remotely interested.  I might consider running Yellowstone next year when I get the hang of it.

Mt. Rushmore is not in Yellowstone.  Need I say more?

Now that we have that out of the way, let's get to the caldera/volcano topic.  Kudos to all of you who watch the science channel and have warned me about it.  Yes, Yellowstone sits on top of one of the largest super volcanoes in the world.  The last time it erupted about 600,000 years ago, it pretty much wiped out a lot of North America.  It left a caldera that encompasses most of Yellowstone.  You probably don't care since none of your relatives were living in the area then, but it probably disturbed some critters.  Some scientists say that we are overdue for the big one by about 40,000 years, give or take a few hundred.

Here's the deal about a caldera.  Imagine dropping a bowling ball off your deck.  You probably do this every weekend.  It leaves a depression, right?  A caldera is the depression made when all of that hot, bubbling magma blows sky high out of the ground and drops in your back yard.  I'm not doing the process justice, but if you want the scientific description, go to and have your pants scared off.  If you want the unscientific version, you can watch the new movie, 2012.  You get to see the whole thing blow and learn how you can outrun the devastation.

Living on top of a super volcano for six months doesn't bother me because...if it really does erupt and destroy North America, I want to be at ground zero.  I am not a survivalist.  I'm not living in my basement, gnawing on beef jerky or my cat, defending my property from my neighbors, while waiting for the acid rain to fall.  Let's get it over with.  Poof!  Actually, it's sort of the baby boomer retirement plan since none of us have any savings left.

I've faced danger before when it comes to my choice of living environment.  Perhaps you've heard of the 1974 tornado in Xenia, Ohio.  Check it out on (type in Xenia tornado).  That killer tornado killed 32 people and destroyed over 300 homes.  Ta da!  That's where I live now.  It's not uncommon around here to see parts of the Emerald City and a few munchkins flying overhead during storm season.  When we lived in Palm Desert, California, the San Andreas fault was in our back yard.  So why not live over a super volcano?

So, yes, I know that Yellowstone is on top of a volcano.  I know that it could blow while I'm there.  I also know that a piece of the space shuttle could fall on my house.  All things considered, I think I'd rather take my chances at the Park.  The countdown continues and all is well.    



darlin said...

When are you leaving for Yellowstone? I bet if I went back and read some more of your blog I'd find out... I'll get there one of these fine days, not at 1am when I have to be up for classes by 7 though! Have a great day Judy, interesting post I must say.

Judy said...

I'm leaving around April 18th. My youngest starts the 22nd, the girlfriend starts the 24th and I don't start until the 29th. Hope you were alert today.

sherry said...

Sounds like you've read "The Road." You have the right attitude. Just living your life is a calculated risk. Can't wait to follow your adventures in that great big ol' campground.

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