Yellowstone Hot Spring Goes Dormant

in Yellowstone/News

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

One of Yellowstone National Park’s hot springs has gone dormant, with no real indication of when it will become active again.

According to a Facebook post from Yellowstone National Park, Canary Spring (part of Mammoth Hot Springs) went dormant earlier this week.

While this is a “dramatic” change, this isn’t the first time the spring has gone dormant. According to the post, Canary Spring is known for erratic activity.

The park’s records show the spring going dormant in October 1884, but active again sometime in 1885. It was also inactive from 1914 to 1924.

Between 1925 and 1932, the spring went through many periods of activity and dormancy. There was also a period of great terrace formation right before this, with Canary and Butterfly terraces forming around the spring in 1924.

Records also show the spring was inactive from 1939 to 1948, but active again between 1954 and 1984. In 1991, a 6-inch “spouter” was observed at the very top of the spring.

In the fall of 1993, a travertine formation grew, shifting the water flow toward a wooden observation platform. Between 1995 and 1997, there was increased runoff toward the Mammoth Corrals.

On Sept. 26, 1998, Canary Spring went dormant and the next day, no water was visible. The last time that happened was in 1970.

On Oct. 3, 1998, the main vent began flowing again. In 2006, the spring went dormant for about 24 hours and then over a four-day period, slowly regained activity.

“Will Canary Spring awaken from this dormancy, and if so, when?” the post ended.

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