Timelapse of Chile’s Calbuco volcano

Southern Chile’s Calbuco volcano, near the cities of Puerto Varas and Puerto Montt, erupted on 22 April for the first time in 40 years. Production company Timestorm Films was there to catch the action in a series of timelapses.

Calbuco is stratovolcano, also known as a composite volcano – a conical volcano built up over the years by many strata of lava, pumice, and volcanic ash. Unlike shield volcanoes (built almost entirely from lava flows as with Mauna Kea in Hawaiʻi), stratovolcanoes are characterised by a steep profile and periodic explosive eruptions.

Martin Heck from Timestorm explains how he caught the eruption on timelapse.

“We spent the prior couple of days on the neighboring volcano Osorno (~20km linear distance) shooting timelapses. After an amazing night under the nightsky we took the cable car downwards after a delay caused by repairs. Already late we headed south to catch the ferry on Routa 7 down to Patagonia.”

“After 10min on the ferry we noticed a massive, almost nuclear looking cloud boiling upwards just were we left a few hours ago. Frenetically looking for a good outlook we then rushed to the only non-forested place to get a decent view of the show. We quickly put every bit of camera-equipment we could find on the constantly growing mushroom-cloud.
We shot timelapses in 8K and 4K with a Pentax 645Z and Canon 6D. On the A7s we shot 4K video to the Shogun. We filled almost all of our memory cards in the prior night so I had to do backups while shooting all this stuff.”

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