Record numbers of visitors to Yellowstone National Park may have been a bit shaken today as a continuous swarm of earthquakes caused tremors through the park beginning a little before noon today, local time.
Nearly 150 quakes had been recorded as of 5pm on Friday with magnitudes reaching 3.2 and emanating from an area beneath Lake Yellowstone.
Geologists say that the days tremors were like quakes that took place in December 2020 and that most seismic activity in the Yellowstone area occur in swarms.
“Each Yellowstone earthquake swarm is unique, lasting minutes to weeks and including a few to thousands of earthquakes that might or might not move around over time,” the USGS says on their website.
Concerns that the Yellowstone is home to a super volcano that could explode and destroy a vast part of the region have persisted for many years, but seismologists seem unconcerned as the Yellowstone Volcano status is listed as normal.
In June of this year Yellowstone was affected by four quake swarms including a swarm of 153 earthquakes, about 11 miles northeast of West Yellowstone, MT, that began June 19. It includes the largest event of the month on June 28, as well as six earthquakes in the magnitude-2 range.
Another swarm of 153 earthquakes happened nearly 10 miles north-northeast of Old Faithful, beginning on June 9. The largest earthquake of that swarm, magnitude 2.5, occurred June 21. This swarm includes 12 earthquakes in the magnitude 2 range.
A swarm of 52 earthquakes, about 7 miles north-northeast of West Yellowstone, MT, began June 29, with the largest event, magnitude 1.6, occurring on June 29.
A small swarm of 18 earthquakes, around 7 miles north of West Yellowstone, MT, began June 22, with the largest earthquake, magnitude 1.4, occurring June 22.
Earthquake sequences like these are considered common and account for roughly 50% of the total seismic activity in the Yellowstone region.