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Mount Shasta

Mount Shasta - Feb, 2003 (enlarge)
another Mount Shasta photo credits

Mount Shasta is the second highest peak in the Cascade Mountains and the second highest point in California (after Mount Whitney.) Several religious cults claim that descendants of Atlantis or extraterrestrials live in the mountain, oblivious to the fact of the population explosion apparently taking place inside it.

There are six tiny glaciers on the mountain, which is snow-covered all year round. It is the largest single concentration of ice in California.

The mountain consists of four separate cones buried atop one another. Shastina is the current cone and is a lesser summit. It has a fully intact summit crater which shows that Shastina postdates the last Ice Age. It can release volcanic ash, pyrocastic flows[?] or dacite[?] and andesite[?] lava. Its deposits can be detected under two small towns totalling 20 000 in population. Shasta has an explosive, eruptive history. There are fumaroles[?] on the mountain, which shows that Shasta is still alive.

The worst case scenario for an eruption is a large pyroclastic flow obliterating the two towns. Since there is ice, lahars[?] would also result. Ash would probably blow inland, perhaps as far as eastern Nevada. There is a small chance that an eruption could also be bigger resulting in a collapse of the mountain, as happened at Crater Lake in Oregon, but this is of much lower probability.

The US Geologic Survey[?] considers Shasta a volcano with a high probability of erupting again.

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