Photo gallery of the Mono Craters, California

The Mono Craters is a 17-km-long chain of rhyolite domes and flows that were erupted from 35,000 to about 600 years ago. All but four of the 24 exposed domes and flows of the Mono Craters are less than 10,000 years old. The most recent eruptive episode occurred between A.D. 1325 and 1365, during which time there were several explosive eruptions and five separate lava flows that oozed onto the surface, including Panun Dome and North Coulee flow.

Aerial view of Mono Craters, California

Photograph by C.D. Miller in 1983

Aerial view towards the north from above the South Coulee (dark, irregular suface at bottom of photo). The light, smooth dome in the center of the photo is mantled with thick layers of tephra. Between the South Coulee and the smooth dome are 4 small explosion craters. Mono Lake is at the top of photo. The hills beyond Mono Lake are the Adobe Hills, a tertiary volcanic complex.


Lava domes of Mono Craters, California

Photograph by R.A. Bailey on
October 15, 1984

View is from along Highway 395 toward the east. Two lava domes of the Mono Craters are visible in this photo. The orginal blocky surfaces of the domes are hidden beneath layers of whitish tephra. The highest dome (center of photo) towers nearly 600 m above the foreground. The dome to the right is younger than the other dome.


Mono Craters, California

Photograph by C.D. Miller in 1976

View from the crest of the Mono Craters is looking toward the north. Mono Lake is visible on the right side of the photograph; the Sierra Nevada are the snow-covered peaks on the left. The original blocky surface of the red-colored lava dome sticks up through tephra erupted from one of the North Coulee vents; a remnant of a crater rim cuts through the photograph. The blocky lava outcrops are also active fumaroles releasing water vapor (steam) and carbon dioxide gas.


Panum Dome, Mono Craters, California

Panum Crater and lava dome

Aerial view of a lava dome nestled within Panum Crater, which was built by the explosive ejection of tephra. The explosive eruptions also generated three pyroclastic flows and a surge, and built the ring of tephra that surrounds the Crater. The dome was the last lava flow erupted during Mono eruptive episode between A.D. 1325-1365.


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