In the Shadow of a Volcano

Mount Shasta CA

Northern California’s Mount Shasta is in the top five US volcanoes classified as having “very high threat” by the U.S. Geological Survey. The danger list is topped by Hawaii’s Kilauea, which has been erupting this year. The others in the top five are Mount St. Helens and Mount Rainier in Washington, and Alaska’s Redoubt Volcano. The threat rankings aren’t about what will blow next, but “the potential severity” of the damage. Scientists say Shasta has erupted an average of every 600 years. The last significant eruption may have occurred about two centuries ago.

The lore of some of the Klamath Tribes in the area held that Mount Shasta is inhabited by the Spirit of the Above-World, Skell, who descended from heaven to the mountain’s summit at the request of a Klamath chief. Skell fought with Spirit of the Below-World, Llao, who resided at Mount Mazama by throwing hot rocks and lava, probably representing the volcanic eruptions at both mountains.

Me, I am going to rest and relax under the volcanos shadow. Take time to reflect and slow down, and refrain from doing or seeing everything in the area. I will try NOT to think of the 1997 movie Dante’s Peak. Although I don’t mind thinking about Pierce Brosnan.

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