In May 2008 the Chaitén Volcano, located about 1,200 kilometers south of Santiago, woke from a 9,370-year slumber. It’s primary eruption lasted about a month; at its peak activity it blew a column of ash and gas nearly 31 kilometers into the sky and spewed ash as far as Buenos Aires, 2,000 kilometers away.
Half of the town of Chaitén, which sits 10 kilometers to the southwest, was destroyed. Most of the damage came after the main eruption when the Blanco River, swollen with rain and volcanic material, flooded its banks. The river has since been rerouted and five years later, considerable damage remains, rendering parts of Chaitén a seaside ghost town.
A few more images taken over the course of the same day.
Check out the recently updated original post published from Chaitén, which includes a notebook account, plenty more images and this short video notebook which I’m including again here.
If you’ve passed through more recently, I’d love to hear from you.
And for the record: today’s Pic du Jour, the site’s 790th straight, was taken in Chaitén, Chile, on 03 March 2013.