Nevado del Huila

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Nevado del Huila
Volcan Huila 9-12-2008 (1).jpg
Nevado del Huila in December 2008
Highest point
Elevation 5,364 m (17,598 ft)
Prominence 2,650 m (8,690 ft)
Listing Ultra
Coordinates 02°55′48″N76°01′48″W / 2.93000°N 76.03000°W / 2.93000; -76.03000 Coordinates: 02°55′48″N76°01′48″W / 2.93000°N 76.03000°W / 2.93000; -76.03000
Colombia relief location map.jpg
Red triangle with thick white border.svg
Nevado del Huila
Location of Nevado del Huila in Colombia
Location Cauca, Huila & Tolima
Flag of Colombia.svg  Colombia
Parent range Central Ranges
Mountain type Andesitic stratovolcano
Volcanic arc/belt North Volcanic Zone
  Andean Volcanic Belt
Last eruption 2008 to 2012

Nevado del Huila ( /nɛˈvɑːddɛlˈwlə/ , Spanish pronunciation:  [neˈβaðo ðel ˈwila] ) at 5,364 metres (17,598 ft), [1] is the highest volcano in Colombia, located at the tripoint of the departments of Huila, Tolima and Cauca. It is visible from the city of Cali. [2] The andesitic volcano is located on top of the Ibagué Batholith. [3]


After being dormant for more than 500 years, the volcano showed heavy signs of activity in 2007 and 2008. As of February 20, 2007, there were more than 7000 "minor" seismic events, and a high state of alert was in place for the departments of Cauca, Huila, Caldas and Valle del Cauca. [4] The volcano erupted twice in April 2007, once in April 2008 and again in November 2008. Any eruption would affect the small villages around the volcano, mostly Páez, where their inhabitants still have in memory the eruption of the Nevado del Ruiz volcano and the destruction of Armero.


2007 eruption

On April 18, 2007, the volcano erupted twice causing avalanches into the Paez River; this event caused water levels to rise along the Magdalena River. More than 4,000 people were evacuated with no casualties reported. [5] [6]

2008 activity and eruption

Nevado del Huila became active again in March 2008. After a multitude of earthquakes inside the volcano, Colombian authorities declared a state of yellow alert on March 18. [7] The state of alert was increased to orange on March 29, meaning an eruption could be expected within two weeks. Hundreds of people were evacuated. [8] On April 14, 2008 at 11:08 pm, an ash eruption took place, prompting the government to issue a red alert and evacuate 13,000 to 15,000 people from around the mountain. [9] The state of red alert was again lowered to orange on April 16, following diminished activity. [10]

November 2008 eruption

On November 20, 2008, the volcano erupted at 02:45 GMT (at 21:45 on November 20 local time) according to Colombian Institute of Geology and Mining. [11] An immediate mass-scale evacuation was put in motion by the Colombian authorities, which the inhabitants of some towns reportedly refused. There were no injured reported at the time. [12] On November 23, 2008, BBC News , citing Colombian authorities, announced that the eruption had claimed ten lives, with 12,000 nearby residents being evacuated and emergency services unable to reach many of the more remote affected locations. [13] The eruption had triggered an avalanche of earth and debris that damaged houses, bridges and crops on plantations. [14] The three small towns of Paicol, La Plata and Belalcázar along the Páez River were affected by this eruption. [15]

Extensive instrumentation of the volcano, put in place by the existing national system for prevention and care of disasters, [16] which includes training of local inhabitants in high-risk regions and deployment of alarms in nearby towns, reportedly prevented large-scale deaths. [11] President Álvaro Uribe ordered the Air Force of Colombia to create an "air bridge" to provide supplies for cut off towns along the Páez River. [17]

See also

Related Research Articles

Nevado del Ruiz Volcanic mountain in Colombia

The Nevado del Ruiz, also known as La Mesa de Herveo is a volcano located on the border of the departments of Caldas and Tolima in Colombia, about 129 kilometers (80 mi) west of the capital city Bogotá. It is a stratovolcano composed of many layers of lava alternating with hardened volcanic ash and other pyroclastic rocks. Volcanic activity at Nevado del Ruiz began about two million years ago, since the Early Pleistocene or Late Pliocene, with three major eruptive periods. The current volcanic cone formed during the present eruptive period, which began 150 thousand years ago.

Cauca Department Department of Colombia

Cauca Department is a Department of Colombia. Located in the southwestern part of the country, facing the Pacific Ocean to the west, the Valle del Cauca Department to the north, Tolima Department to the northeast, Huila Department to the east, and Nariño Department to the south. Putumayo and Caqueta Departments border the southeast portion of Cauca Department as well. It covers a total area of 29,308 km2 (11,316 sq mi), the 13th largest in Colombia. Its capital is the city of Popayán. The offshore island of Malpelo belongs to the department. It is located in the southwest of the country on the Andean and Pacific regions. The area includes 2.56% of the country.

Galeras Volcanic mountain in Colombia

Galeras is an Andean stratovolcano in the Colombian department of Nariño, near the departmental capital Pasto. Its summit rises 4,276 metres (14,029 ft) above sea level. It has erupted frequently since the Spanish conquest, with its first historical eruption being recorded on December 7, 1580. A 1993 eruption killed nine people, including six scientists who had descended into the volcano's crater to sample gases and take gravity measurements in an attempt to be able to predict future eruptions. It is currently the most active volcano in Colombia.

Ibagué Municipio in Andean Region, Colombia

Ibagué is the capital of Tolima and also part of The Colombian coffee Region, one of the 32 departments that make up the Republic of Colombia. The city is located in the center of the country, on the central mountain range of the Colombian Andes, near Nevado del Tolima. It is one of the most populous cities in the country, with about 529,635 inhabitants, making it the seventh (7th) most populous in Colombia. It was founded on October 14, 1550, by the Spanish captain Andrés López de Galarza. The city of Ibagué is divided into 13 communes and the rural area has 17 corregimientos. As the capital of the department of Tolima the city hosts the Government of Tolima, the Departmental Assembly, and the Attorney General's Office. It is the main epicenter of political, economic, administrative, business, art, culture, and tourism activities in the area.

Armero tragedy November 1985 volcanic eruption in Colombia

The Armero tragedy was one of the major consequences of the eruption of the Nevado del Ruiz stratovolcano in Tolima, Colombia, on November 13, 1985. After 69 years of dormancy, the volcano's eruption caught nearby towns unaware, even though the government had received warnings from multiple volcanological organizations to evacuate the area after the detection of volcanic activity two months earlier.

Omayra Sánchez volcano victim from Colombia

Omayra Sánchez Garzón was a 13-year-old Colombian girl killed in Armero, Tolima, by the 1985 eruption of the Nevado del Ruiz volcano. Volcanic debris mixed with ice to form massive lahars, which rushed into the river valleys below the mountain, killing nearly 23,000 people and destroying Armero and 13 other villages.

1994 Páez River earthquake

The 1994 Páez River earthquake occurred on June 6 with a moment magnitude of 6.8 at a depth of 12 km (7.5 mi). The event, which is also known as the Páez River disaster, included subsequent landslides and mudslides that destroyed the small town of Páez, located on the foothills of the Central Ranges of the Andes in Cauca in south-western Colombia. It was estimated that 1,100 people, mostly from the Páez, were killed in some 15 settlements on the Páez River basin, Cauca and Huila departments of which the eponymous town of Páez suffered 50% of the death toll. In response to the disaster, the government created the Nasa Kiwe Corporation to bring relief to the area, and begin the reconstruction of the affected areas.

Cordillera Central (Colombia) mountain range in the Colombian Andes

The Cordillera Central is the highest of the three branches of the Colombian Andes. The range extends from south to north dividing from the Colombian Massif in Cauca Department to the Serranía de San Lucas in Bolivar Departments. The highest peak is Nevado del Huila at 5,364 m (17,598 ft).

Tolima Department Department of Colombia

Tolima is one of the 32 departments of Colombia, located in the Andean region, in the center-west of the country. It is bordered on the north and the west by the department of Caldas; on the east by the department of Cundinamarca; on the south by the department of Huila, and on the west by the departments of Cauca, Valle del Cauca, Quindío and Risaralda. Tolima has a surface area of 23,562 km², and its capital is Ibagué. The department of Tolima was created in 1861 from a part of what was previously Cundinamarca.

Nevado del Quindío mountain in Colombia

The Nevado del Quindío is an inactive volcano located in the Central Cordillera of the Andes in central Colombia. The summit marks the tripoint of the departments of Risaralda, Quindío and Tolima, and is also the highest point of the departments of Risaralda and Quindío. The mountain is one of the highest peaks in the Los Nevados National Natural Park, which is a wildlife sanctuary. There are no historical records of any eruption. The andesitic volcano is located on top of the Palestina Fault.

Nevado del Tolima volcano located in the Central Andes of Colombia

The Nevado del Tolima is a Late Pleistocene to recently active andesitic stratovolcano located in the Tolima department, Colombia. The volcano lies south of Nevado del Ruiz volcano and is situated within the Los Nevados National Natural Park. The volcano, whose most recent activity dates to 1943 and last major eruption around 3600 years ago, overlies the Eocene El Bosque Batholith, dated at 49.1 ± 1.7 Ma.

Santa Isabel (volcano) volcano master

Santa Isabel is a shield volcano located in Tolima, Colombia, southwest of Nevado del Ruiz volcano. The volcano is located over the Palestina Fault, that crosscuts the underlying El Bosque Batholith of Eocene age, dated at 49.1 ± 1.7 Ma.

Cerro Bravo volcano in Tolima Department, Colombia

Cerro Bravo is a stratovolcano located in Tolima, Colombia, north of the Nevado del Ruiz volcano. The rock type of the volcano is andesite.

Puracé mountain in Colombia

Puracé is an andesitic stratovolcano located in the Puracé National Natural Park in the Cauca Department, Colombia. It is part of the North Volcanic Zone of the Andean Volcanic Belt. The volcano is located at the intersection of the Coconucos and Morras Faults.

Doña Juana stratovolcano located within the Doña Juana-Cascabel Volcanic Complex National Natural Park

Doña Juana is a stratovolcano, located within the Doña Juana-Cascabel Volcanic Complex National Natural Park in Nariño, Colombia.

Páez, Cauca Municipality and town in Cauca Department, Colombia

Paéz is a municipality in the Cauca Department, Colombia. The town of Belalcazar, is the main urban center of the Municipality. It was founded in 1905 by Valencia, Mosquera and Lemus. The town is located by the steps of the Nevado del Huila Volcano, the municipality borders to the northeast with the Tolima Department, to the west with the Huila Department, southwest with the municipality of Inza, to the west with the municipalities of Silvia and Jambalo and to the north with the municipality of Toribio covering a total area of 1,258 km2 (486 sq mi).

Nevado El Cisne mountain in Colombia

The Nevado El Cisne is a volcano in the Central Ranges of the Andes in Colombia. Its summit is at an altitude of 4,636 metres (15,210 ft). The mountain is one of the five lava domes of the Nevado del Ruiz volcano complex. Despite the nevado part of the name, indicating a permanently snow-capped mountain, the summit of El Cisne is now below the permanent snow line as a result of global warming, and it is no longer considered a true nevado. The volcano is located over the Palestina Fault, that crosscuts the underlying El Bosque Batholith of Eocene age, dated at 49.1 ± 1.7 Ma.

The following lists events that happened during 2008 in Colombia.


  1. "Global Volcanism Program | Nevado del Huila". Retrieved 2018-07-20.
  2. Paz, Manuel María. "View of Cali and of the Snow-Capped Mount Huila, Province of Buenaventura". World Digital Library. Retrieved 2014-05-22.
  3. Plancha 322, 1999
  4. (in Spanish) Reducción de actividad sísmica de Nevado del Huila aligera estado de emergencia en zonas cercanas, El Tiempo, February 20, 2007. Accessed February 20, 2007.
  5. (in Spanish) Mudslides occurred, but like in many eruptions, lava was not present.Destrucción de cuatro puentes y numerosos cultivos deja a su paso avalancha en el Cauca, El Tiempo
  6. "Thousands flee from Colombia volcano". CNN. Archived from the original on April 29, 2007. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
  7. Yellow alert for Colombian volcano Nevado del Huila
  8. State of alert volcano Nevado del Huila raised to orange
  9. Colombian volcano erupts in shower of hot ash; authorities declare alert, International Herald Tribune, April 15, 2008.
  10. Reduced activity Nevada de Huila volcano, Colombia Reports, April 16, 2008.
  11. 1 2 "Nevado del Huila Volcano Erupts in Colombia". Latin America Herald Tribune. November 23, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
  12. "Nevado del Huila volcano erupts; thousands evacuated". Colombia Reports. November 23, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
  13. "Colombia volcano claims 10 lives". BBC News. November 23, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
  14. "Crops damaged by Colombian volcano eruption". Fairfax New Zealand. November 22, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
  15. "Volcano erupts in southern Colombia". Miami Herald. November 21, 2008. Archived from the original on October 7, 2009. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
  16. Dirección Nacional para la Prevención y Atención de Desastres
  17. "Colombian volcano sets off landslides". Associated Press. November 22, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-23.