– Mount Baker, in Washington State, is Part of Volcano Awareness Month: Glacier-covered Mount Baker (10,770 feet – 3,285 meters), the centerpiece of the Mount Baker Wilderness Area, is seen below from Twin Lakes on the north. Sherman Crater, the source of historical eruptions from Mount Baker, appears from this perspective on the left side between the summit and the small sharp-topped Sherman Peak. The older dissectedBlack Buttes volcano forms the two sharp peaks below and to the right of the summit. Mount Baker is the northernmost of Washington’s volcanoes.
As the summer months approach, state officials want to remind those who go out to Mt. Baker that they are skiing, snowboarding and camping on an active volcano. May is volcano awareness month, and Carolyn Driedger with the U.S. Geological Survey says the biggest threat from a Baker eruption would be volcanic mud flows. She says those who live in volcano hazard zones around Mt. Baker need to have a plan to get to higher ground. Driedger says officials are confident they will see some warning signs before an eruption on Mt. Baker. West of Baker, the towns of Glacier, Maple Falls, Deming, Everson andSumas all lie in the pathway for eruption-related mud flows.
Washington State is dotted with potentially explosive volcanoes. The May 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens is a recent example. With 6.7 million people residing in the state, the result of a major eruption would be catastrophic. (Credits: Photo – Lee Siebert, 1971 for the Smithsonian Institution; Narrative – The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, RSOE EDIS and W. G. Foster; Washington State Volcanoes – NationalAtlas.com).