Azufral in 1989
|Elevation||4,070 m (13,350 ft)|
|Listing||Volcanoes of Colombia|
|Location|| Nariño |
|Parent range|| Western Ranges |
|Age of rock||Holocene|
|Volcanic arc/belt||Northern Volcanic Zone, Andean Volcanic Belt|
|Last eruption||930 BC(?)|
Azufral is a stratovolcano located in the department of Nariño in southern Colombia, 12 km (7 mi) west of the town of Túquerres. It is the only volcano of the Western Ranges of the Colombian Andes. Its name derives from the Spanish word for sulfur, azufre. The volcano is considered semi-dormant but there are numerous fumaroles in the summit crater. The summit of the volcano has an altitude of 4,070 metres (13,350 ft), and the north-western side of the crater contains a crescent-shaped lake named Laguna Verde (English: Green Lake) at 3,970 m (13,025 ft). The lake is 1,100 m (0.68 mi) long and 600 metres (2,000 ft) wide. and its bright green color is a result of the sulfur and iron-based deposits in the crater. There are also two other much smaller lakes in the crater, Laguna Negra (English: Black Lake) and Laguna Cristal (English: Crystal Lake).
A stratovolcano, also known as a composite volcano, is a conical volcano built up by many layers (strata) of hardened lava, tephra, pumice and ash. Unlike shield volcanoes, stratovolcanoes are characterized by a steep profile with a summit crater and periodic intervals of explosive eruptions and effusive eruptions, although some have collapsed summit craters called calderas. The lava flowing from stratovolcanoes typically cools and hardens before spreading far, due to high viscosity. The magma forming this lava is often felsic, having high-to-intermediate levels of silica, with lesser amounts of less-viscous mafic magma. Extensive felsic lava flows are uncommon, but have travelled as far as 15 km (9.3 mi).
Colombia is a unitary republic made up of thirty-two departments and a Capital District. Each department has a Governor (gobernador) and a Department Assembly, elected by popular vote for a four-year period. The governor cannot be re-elected in consecutive periods. Departments are country subdivisions and are granted a certain degree of autonomy.
Nariño is a department of Colombia named after independence leader Antonio Nariño. Its capital is Pasto. It is in the west of the country, bordering Ecuador and the Pacific Ocean.
The volcano lies within a nature reserve, the Reserva Natural del Azufral, created in 1990. 5,800 hectares (58 km2) and is free of charge to enter. As Azufral is semi-dormant, there are no restrictions on ascending the volcano and visiting Laguna Verde: there is a road that climbs to within 1.5 kilometers (1 mi) from the summit, and the remaining distance can be covered on foot via a trail.The reserve covers an area of
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