The Pacific Northwest is a volcanological wonderland.
This animation attempts to explain its volcanic evolution over 55 million years.
The Pacific Northwest consists of:
- An active volcanic arc (Cascades Range)
- A nearby ocean ridge (Pacific Plate-Juan de Fuca Plate spreading ridge)
- The world’s youngest flood basalt province (Columbia River Basalt)
- A hot-spot chain of eastward-younging volcanoes (Yellowstone Trend)
- Volcanism related to continental extension
- And more…
The western margin of North America has long been dominated by subduction and dextral transtension.
Tectonics of the Pacific Northest yield a varied volcanic history. Thus, the Pacific Northwest is a volcanological wonderland.