Practically Perfectly Predicted Saturday Eruption

Our little mini Merapi. Having one of its mild explosive eruptions. We can't be sure but the estimate is that around 8000 people came to witness this eruption. Photo Credit: Tristan Conor Holden
Our little mini Merapi having one of its mild explosive eruptions. We can’t be sure but the estimate is that around 8000 people came to witness this eruption. Photo Credit: Tristan Conor Holden

In the end, the weather and the light were so beautiful we had to delay the forecast ‘eruption’ by 10 chilly minutes! We’re busy collating and compiling footage, movie clips and stories from the day (not to mention our ‘day jobs’). In the meantime here are a few of our photogenic highlights from the world’s best predicted volcanic eruption.

In the build up to the eruption, EventFX Ltd were on hand to have the volcano show signs of unrest through the late afternoon.  It was a pretty musical volcano and seemed to have unrest peaks during  moments  of musical intensity. There were plenty of those (see volcano caption for our playlist).

Jan Chylik
One of the last photos of mini-Merapi during its unrest phase prior to the main eruption. Mini Merapi warmed to unrest when played: movie soundtracks from Dante’s Peak, Volcano, 2012 and Twister; classical excerpts of Carl Orff (Carmina Burana); Holst (Mars from Planet Suite); Wagner (Ride of the Valkyries); Vivaldi (Storm from ‘Summer’) Mussorgksy (Night on a Bald Mountain). Photo Credit: Jan Chylik

During the eruption EventFX had commissioned some fireworks that were a little denser than usual to try and mimic the trajectories of ballistics they had seen in the footage we sent them of small explosions. We also had ‘quiet’ dome glow.

Denser fireworks glide through the air like ballistics. Photo Credit: Tahmeena Aslam
Denser fireworks glide through the air like ballistics. Photo Credit: Tahmeena Aslam

Our ‘pyroclastic flow’ worked pretty well but the bracing East Anglian wind whipped and diluted the cloud a bit faster than we might have liked… and then… the flares around the volcano lit up to signify the start of the artistic and wonderful ‘Trademark Final Flourish’ !(pers. comm. EventFX Ltd)

Tristan Conor Holden
Tristan Conor Holden

A truly fantastic finale; mini-Merapi swathed in ‘choking sulphurous fumes’

Tristan Conor Holden
Tristan Conor Holden

After an afternoon of colouring and drawing volcanoes in the Little Big Top with glitter pens and kids you would think we would have had quite enough of sparkly wonderfulness. Not. one. tiny. little. bit. of it.

Simply magnificent.

We owe a fantastic debt of thanks to those 65+ volunteers from the University of East Anglia and beyond who plastered, painted, wrote, drew, exploded, chatted, talked rocks and finally stewarded crowds. Thank you! More on those adventures soon.

For those of you wondering where all the cakes have gone, have no fear, the volcano-cake blog of the century is on its way……

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