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 Famous Volcanoes of Mexico

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عدد المساهمات : 216
تاريخ التسجيل : 03/03/2008
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مُساهمةموضوع: Famous Volcanoes of Mexico   الإثنين يونيو 08, 2009 5:05 am

Famous Volcanoes of Mexico

Mexico is one of the megadiverse countries in the world. There are 18 countries in the world, which fall under the megadiverse category, due to extreme diversity in the Earth species. Mexico has a number of world's active volcanoes that are greatly responsible for the megadiversity factor. Sierra Madre Oriental, Sierra Madre Occidental and Sierra Madre del Sur are the three mountain ranges in Mexico, which form the 'volcanic axis'. This volcanic axis forms the border between North America and Central America. Many famous Mexican volcanoes are on the volcanic axis. Some of them are as follows:

Pico de Orizaba
Pico de Orizaba, also known as Citlatepetl, is the highest mountain in Mexico and third highest in North America with a height of approximately 5700m. City of Orizaba is situated in the valley of Pico de Orizaba, in the eastern part of Mexico. Though, it is 75 miles inland, it can be clearly viewed from the Gulf of Mexico, which lies to the east of Pico de Orizaba. It is an active volcano, with explosive eruption style. The latest eruption of this volcano occurred in the 17th century. Pico de Orizaba is stratovolcano, which means that it is a composite volcano made of a number of layers. The first ascent to this glaciated peak was made in 1848, during the Mexican-American war. The best season to climb is between December to April.

Popocatepetl is the second highest peak in Mexico, with a height of approximately 5400m. Popocatepetl is the Aztec name for 'smoking mountain'. This volcano has mildly erupted many times, for last 600 years. There are possibilities of future eruptions in this volcano. This volcanic peak can be viewed on a clear day from the Mexico City, which is 40 miles to the north-east of the peak. Amecameca, is a city of 25 million people, who are endangered due to the ever-present volcano. Popocatepetl has a crater which is 250-450m deep. In spite of the continuous lava flowing from the volcano, it is covered with glaciers throughout the year. Eruptions in this active volcano cause a severe mud-flow, due to the melting glaciers, in the southern areas of Popocatepetl.

Iztaccihuatl is the third highest peak in Mexico, with a height of approximately 5230m. This volcano is called a 'woman in white' (meaning of Iztaccihuatl) because its four peaks appear to depict the head, chest, knees and feet of a sleeping woman. Iztaccihuatl is 40 miles to the south-east of Mexico city, and is visible from the city, depending on the climatic conditions. Iztaccihuatl has the same geological character as that of Popocatepetl, but volcanic eruptions in the former is history today. Agricultural areas have flourished in this part of Mexico, due to the stability in volcanic eruptions. In 1889, James de Salis climbed the Izta (local name for Iztaccihuatl), but archaeological evidences have proved that the Aztecs have previously climbed the Izta.

Paricutin is one of the recent volcanoes that erupted last between 1943 and 1952, which is unusually very long period for volcanic eruption. It erupted in a cornfield in a Tarascon village, 200 miles to the west of Mexico City, and is named after a small Indian village. Dionisio Pulido witnessed the birth of this volcano when he was working in his field with his wife. San Juan Parangaricutiro and Paricutin were the villages situated near this fissure. They were evacuated soon and, within a year, the place got covered with lava and ash. This volcano gave the scientists their first chance to study a volcano, from its birth to its extinction. Paricutin is considered to be one of the seven wonders of the natural world.

Colima is situated 300 miles west of Mexico City and is considered to be the most active and disastrous volcanoes in Mexico. This volcano is erupting since 1585, and recently, it had several eruptions in the late 1990s. Colima is the most prominent and potentially dangerous volcanoes in the volcanic axis of Mexico. It consists of two peaks, namely Nevado De Colima in the north and Volcan de Colima in the south.

Although, volcanic eruptions are a disastrous calamity, beautiful lakes, hot springs, waterfalls and sylvan mountains are some of the splendid gifts of a volcano after its death. Volcanoes are greatly responsible for the biodiversity in Mexico.

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Famous Volcanoes of Mexico
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