Taal: Eruption Period 1965 - 1977 Taal as seen in 1856

This site is under construction, hence incomplete
Last modification: April 19th, 1999


In 1965 the first explosions begann at 2:00h on 28 September with fountaining of incandescant basaltic spatter and cinders in the vicinity of the 135 meter high Mt. Tabaro located in the southwest portion of Volcano Island. This was followed more than an hour later by violent explosions that carved out a 1.5 km long, 0.3 km wide and 250 m deep explosion crater open to Lake Taal. Explosions migrated irregularly back and forth along the NE-SW trending explosion crater. During major explosive phases, vertical explosion colums reached 20 km in height. The SW prevailing winds carried and deposited fine ash as far as 80 km west of the source.

Ring-shaped, debris laden clouds spread rapidly with hurricane velocity from the base of the verticl explosion column. These base surge clouds sand-blasted trees with fine ash and mud and carried coarse ejecta to form dune beds.The base surge blast caused tsunami to form.

Some pictures of the 1965 eruption are shown on the Taal-page of Volcano World.

1965 base-surge
PhiVolcs photo
1965 base-surge as seen from a boat, fleeing the eruption!cinder cone in 1965 crater

New Eruption site as seen in 1995
View of the 'New Eruption Site' in 1995. The 1969 lava flow fills the elongate 1965 crater. To the right, the 1968-1969 cone, also built within the 1965 crater, is visible. The 'mountain' in the center is the crater wall of the Main Crater.


Starting November 9th, mild phreatomagmatic explosions occurred for 4 days, beginning at the eastern portion of the 1969 cone. The explosions were characteized by the ejection of incandescant materials with accompanying ashes and steam. No significant change in morphology resulted, as only a five meter-wide explosion pit was carved out of the eastern portion of the 1969 cone.


After almost 5 years and 10 months, Taal became active again on September 3rd, 4:00 h, when explosions began at the southern portion of the 1966 cone. This phreatic activity hurled eruption clouds to 1500 m. Barely 13 hours later, explosions migrated northeastward.
The explosive activity was mainly characterized by regular outbursts spaced at intervals which ranged from four seconds to 25 minutes. This explosive activity persisted for 50 days.

1969-flow covered by 1976 ash
Photo. U.Knittel
The rugged surface of the 1969-flow was covered by fine ash during the 1976 eruption. This picture shows the situation in spring 1977.
The 1976 eruption blew up and sliced open the southern half of the 1968 and 1969 cones, the whole of the 1970 pit and exposed the southern half of the 1966 inner rim. The resulting topography is an elogate NE-SW trending explosion crater, measuring 400 x 200 m, being 50 m deep.

view into the 1976 crater
Photo: U.Knittel
View into the 1976 crater, which exposes the lava plug formed in 1968 or 1969, when the lava flow was extruded.


On October 3rd, 1977, a mild phreatic eruption took place inside the 1976 crater. The eruption was characterized by ejection of brownish t grayish ask laden clouds reaching altitudes of up to 500 m. On October 4th, a n ash cone had formed measuring 5 m from its base and about 10 m in outer diameter.
small explosion crater of 19977 as seen in 1978
Photo: M.Simon
The small explosion crater of 1977, as seen in 1978.
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Project leader & scientific contents: Ulrich Knittel
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