Craters of the Moon, Idaho

The same volcanic hotspot that created the Snake River Plain now underlies Yellowstone National Park and causes its famous geothermal activity.

The Snake River Plain was formed by a series of continued volcanic eruptions that lasted 15 million years.

Craters of the Moon Lava Field is made up of 60 lava flows from a series of eruptions that began 15,000 years ago.

The Great Rift of Idaho is a 100km long crack in the Earth’s crust and the source of the eruptions that formed Craters of the Moon.

The Shoshone people, from the Snake River Plain, were the most powerful Native American tribe in the Rocky Mountains.

Shoshone legend tells of a serpent that squeezed a mountain to cause the eruption that created Craters of the Moon.

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Flying at 13,000m - The Snake River Plain


Flying at 1,000m - An "outdoor museum of volcanism"


Flying at ground level - Shoshone legends of the lava

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© 2017 Royal Geographical Society (with IBG)