Some of you may have heard about the sad events on Erta ‘Ale early on Tuesday morning, when a party of tourists was attacked. We were due to get up there that night but have cancelled the Erta ‘Ale and Dallol section of the trip and are now in Mekele to the north.
The MRAV conference field trip participants, as well as a group who had attended the conference but were on Erta ‘Ale the previous day, are safe and have left the Afar region. Keep checking our twitter and facebook pages for more frequent updates – and we should be blogging again next week. Our thoughts are with those affected by the incident.
All the best,
A quick update before we head north today. We’ve spent the last three days in Addis Ababa, attending the Magmatic Rifting and Active Volcanism conference. It is a milestone for the Afar Rift consortium, of which the Volcanofiles’ fellow PhD student and officemate, Talfan Barnie, is a member. We’ll be posting more on his work later. For the Volcanofiles, it has been exciting to hear so much about a region in which none of us have worked previously.
In between conference events and travelling around the city, we have been getting together our equipment for the fieldwork on Erta ‘Ale. We’ll go into more detail on the instruments in later posts, but they include a thermal and a video camera, both of which will be pointed at the lava lake; a filter pack for capturing gas and particle information; and a UV spectrometer which is primarily for sulphur dioxide measurements. The field trip schedule gives us two nights and a day at the top of the volcano, so we are more likely to run out of batteries than to run out of time!
We are unlikely to have any internet access for the next nine days, but will be putting up photos and blog posts when we get back.