Review of the best according to the editorial board. On the selection criteria. This material is subjective, does not constitute advertising and does not serve as a purchase guide. Before buying, you need to consult with a specialist.
There is something amazing about geysers – high-power springs of water that gush out of the ground like natural fountains. These objects attract attention and show how little we know about our planet. The surface of the Earth seems to be unshakable, rigid, but deep under it natural forces are raging – and manifest, throwing streams of water to great heights.
The 'mechanism of operation' of geysers is no less amazing than the emissions themselves. Huge masses of water fill the underground wastelands, they are heated by the heat from magma, boil – and are thrown out like streams of steam from a kettle forgotten on the stove. And then the liquid flows back into the caves. And heats up again …
Therefore, many geysers erupt at surprisingly accurate intervals. Others, on the contrary, at the most unexpected moment. And it is impossible to predict when the next eruption of such objects will occur.
For those who want to be amazed by the incredible forces of nature, we have collected the 10 largest geysers on the planet.
- Rating of the largest geysers on the planet
- 10th place: Strokkur, Iceland – up to 40 meters
- 9th place: Giant, Russia – up to 40 meters
- 8th place: Old Faithful, USA – up to 56 meters
- 7th place: Malachite grotto, Russia – up to 60 meters
- 6th place: Giantess, USA – up to 60 meters
- 5th place: Great Geyser, USA – up to 61 meters
- 4th place: Beehive, USA – up to 61 meters
- 3rd place: Geysir, Iceland – up to 70 meters
- 2nd place: Giant, USA – up to 76 meters
- 1st place: Steamer, USA – up to 90 meters
- Bonus: Waimangu, New Zealand – up to 460 meters
Rating of the largest geysers on the planet
|Nomination||a place||name||Discharge height|
|10 largest geysers on the planet||10||Strokkur, Iceland||UP TO 40 METERS|
|9||Giant, Russia||UP TO 40 METERS|
|8||Old Faithful, USA||UP TO 56 METERS|
|7||Malachite grotto, Russia||UP TO 60 METERS|
|6||Giantess, USA||UP TO 60 METERS|
|5||Great Geyser, USA||UP TO 61 METERS|
|4||Beehive, USA||UP TO 61 METERS|
|3||Geysir, Iceland||UP TO 70 METERS|
|2||Giant, USA||UP TO 76 METERS|
|1||Steamer, USA||UP TO 90 METERS|
|Bonus||Waimangu, New Zealand||UP TO 460 METERS|
10th place: Strokkur, Iceland – up to 40 meters
Strokkur is one of the most active geysers in Iceland. It erupts literally every few minutes, pushing streams of hot water up to 40 meters high. This increased activity is due to the location of the source.
Strokkur is located in the geothermal region in the southwest of Iceland, near the Hvitau River. Here the soil temperature is, in principle, very high. Therefore, rainwater, penetrating into the ground, heats up by 1 degree every 20 meters. It is worth noting that due to the increase in pressure, the boiling point does not occur at the usual level of 100 °, but at a slightly higher one. Because of this, the water, as it rises, continues to turn into steam.
There are several other high-power sources near Strokkur, including the most famous in Iceland – Geysir. But it is this very object that erupts quite often so that tourists in any case can enjoy the power and beauty of nature. And Geysir 'works' extremely rarely. By the way, a separate place in our rating is dedicated to him.
9th place: Giant, Russia – up to 40 meters
In Kamchatka, in the Kronotsky Biosphere Reserve, there is a field called the Valley of Geysers. This is the only geological formation of this type and at the same time one of the largest in the world. In terms of size and scale, it can only compete with Yellowstone Park in the United States.
And in this reserve there are two geysers, which are included in the rating of the largest on the planet. One of them is called the Giant. Its height during the eruption can reach 40 meters!
It erupts, however, not periodically. Between emissions can take from several hours to a day. But at the same time, up to 30 tons of water rises into the air. However, even if you can't wait for the eruption of the Giant, the Valley of Geysers will still be able to please the curious visitor. After all, there are more than a dozen large springs and an innumerable number of small ones.
Due to the fact that the shape and topology of the Valley is constantly changing, it is extremely dangerous to be here. At any moment, a stream of boiling water can fly out of the ground. And to understand where the next geyser will come from is very difficult – only the largest springs have their own names and marks on the map, but small ones appear and disappear. This is one of the reasons the passage to the Valley is limited. The second is the extreme fragility of the biosphere of the reserve, and contact with humans can significantly damage the ecosystem.
8th place: Old Faithful, USA – up to 56 meters
The Old Faithful is one of the most famous geysers on the planet. It is located in the American National Park Yellowstone and was opened back in 1870. The source is interesting both for the duration and the frequency of the eruptions.
Hot water discharge takes 1.5 to 5 minutes. During this time, up to 32 thousand liters of liquid rise to a height of 56 meters! The frequency of eruptions is bimodal and can be either 65 minutes or 91 minutes. On average, of course. Maximum two hours.
The old campaigner is also interesting by the fact that scientists have examined his throat. As it turned out, it has an oval, 'flattened' cross-section, and the width varies from 2 to 10 meters. At the bottom of the geyser, water is heated to a temperature of 129 degrees, and then thrown out as a mixture of boiling water and steam.
The old campaigner works a little differently from other geysers. It does not accumulate hot water – it comes from low depths. And at the 'bottom' there is an explosive boiling, almost instantaneous vapor formation, and this sharply pushes the liquid volumes upwards. It is clear that it is better to observe such a source from a distance. Indeed, even on the surface, the water remains hot, and its streams may well burn an unlucky tourist.
7th place: Malachite grotto, Russia – up to 60 meters
The Malachite Grotto is another geyser located in the biosphere reserve in Kamchatka. Highest from local sources! True, now its 'rhythm' is difficult to catch, so it will not work to predict whether it will be possible to admire it or not.
The fact is that in 2007 a mudflow occurred in the Valley of Geysers. This is a rather rare natural phenomenon for most of Russia. During the mudflow, water flows mixed with mud and stones descend from the mountain slopes. In fact, like an avalanche, only from the soil.
The 2007 mudflow changed the ecosystem of the Valley of Geysers. Many sources, including the Malachite Grotto, have been destroyed, damaged or altered. In 2013, another mudflow occurred. He restored a number of geysers (including the same Malachite Grotto) and opened many new ones.
It seemed that one could continue to admire these unusual natural objects. However, in 2014, there was a major landslide, after which only the largest of the geysers remained functional. The malachite grotto, which had not erupted too often before, then changed its shape again.
Such constant changes are due to the fact that this source is in the cave, and water is escaping from its entrance. Therefore, collapses and other events greatly change its geometry.
6th place: Giantess, USA – up to 60 meters
The Giantess is one of the most rarely erupting geysers in Yellowstone Biosphere Park. Emissions occur only a few times a year! The highest frequency is every two months. However, more often the eruption has to wait up to six months.
But the rarity of emissions is compensated by their duration. They can last up to two days! During this time, streams of hot, practically boiling water rise to a height of 60 meters.
In general, most of the largest geysers in the world (including the highest) are located just in the territory of Yellowstone. This is due to the unique features of the site. Under the national park is a volcanic caldera formed over 630 thousand years ago as a result of a huge, destructive eruption. And some scientists speculate that it could explode again – at any time. Even the day after tomorrow. The consequences of the eruption of the Yellowstone supervolcano will be catastrophic for all life on the planet, not only the United States will suffer, but the rest of the world.
Now in the territory of Yellowstone there are about 3 thousand geysers. This is approximately 2/3 of the total number of sources on the planet. And that is why it is so attractive to tourists. And here you can also admire unique geological formations like the Great Prismatic Spring with a bottom that shimmers with all the colors of the rainbow.
5th place: Great Geyser, USA – up to 61 meters
The Great Geyser, located in Yellowstone, is the largest source of all predictable eruptions. Hot water is discharged at intervals of 1-3 times a day, and is preceded by some natural phenomena such as a slight shaking of the ground nearby. A column of boiling water and steam rises to a height of 61 meters.
True, you can only admire the eruption from a considerable distance. And this is due not only to the danger of burns. The geyser itself is located in a swampy area, so it will not work to get closer to it without getting your feet wet to your ears.
However, in the territory of Yellowstone there is something to admire and besides this source. There are many interesting and unusual objects in this national park. For example, there is a forest of dead trees right next to the Great Geyser. Constant contact with salt water and high temperatures led to the fact that the pines growing nearby died, shed their needles, and their trunks were 'preserved' and now stand as pale white skeletons not far from the source.
4th place: Beehive, USA – up to 61 meters
This Yellowstone geyser got its name from the unusual mineral formation of the jagged shape from which it bursts out. More precisely, several thousand years ago, streams of boiling water rose directly from a crevice in the ground. However, with instant condensation, they left traces of minerals at the edges of the crack, which have now turned into a quite large bump.
Stalactites are formed in caves in about the same way. Only there mineral water drips to the ground in certain places, but here it breaks out from under the soil. Moreover, the height of its rise can be up to 61 meters! Eruptions occur infrequently, about 1-3 times a day, but are easily predictable.
The secret to predictability is that there is a twin geyser next to the Hive. Its height is slightly less, maximum 7.5 meters, but the frequency is very similar. Its eruptions occur 10-20 minutes before the eruptions from the Hive.
3rd place: Geysir, Iceland – up to 70 meters
Geysir is the largest and most famous geyser in Iceland. It is part of the so-called 'golden ring' – a tourist route through the territory of the country, which implies visits to the largest number of thermal springs. During the eruption of Geysir, streams of hot water rise to a height of 60 meters.
However, Geysir's eruptions are not periodic. They can occur every half hour or every few years. So the tourists who caught these emissions were quite lucky. And those who arrived at the wrong moment can only admire the warm lake with a diameter of 18 meters and a depth of 1.2 meters. The water in it is colored green due to the abundance of microscopic algae, which are extremely pleasant to the local temperature conditions. On the shore of this lake, a stone is installed, saying that this very Geysir is located here.
By the way, the Strokkur geyser, which is on the 10th place in our rating, is located in the immediate vicinity of Geysir, only it erupts much more often.
And if you want to see the Geysir eruption guaranteed, then you should come to him on June 17. On this date, Iceland's National Day is celebrated, and the country's government is allowing geologists to make a forced release. For this, soap is added to the source.
2nd place: Giant, USA – up to 76 meters
The giant is another Yellowstone geyser with non-periodic eruptions. In principle, it produces emissions quite rarely. For example, in 2013, it erupted 13 times – and this is the maximum in the entire history of observations. So, there were periods when he slept for 10-12 months.
But every eruption of the Giant is really impressive. When ejected, boiling water mixed with stones rises to a height of 76 meters!
The giant is easy to distinguish from other Yellowstone geysers. Around the nozzle is a mineral-soil deposit of a complex shape. It formed in the same way as the 'bump' near the Hive – water instantly condensed on the surface of the stone, leaving dissolved salts. Over the millennia, plaque has grown to an impressive size.
It is almost impossible to predict the frequency of the Giant's eruptions. However, this is typical of almost all the largest geysers on the planet. Including the leader of the rating.
1st place: Steamer, USA – up to 90 meters
The Steamer Geyser, located in Yellowstone National Park, is the largest on the planet. Erupting, it raises streams of hot water up to 90 meters! Due to this, the geyser can be seen from almost anywhere in Yellowstone during the release.
The thrown away water has a temperature of 70 degrees, so it can cause burns even for those who like hot showers. Therefore, during an eruption, it is better to move back to a safe distance. But to predict the time of the ejection is almost impossible – between the events can pass as 4 days and 50 years.
The geyser got its name from the presence of two additional nozzles. Of these, clouds of steam rise almost constantly, which are best seen in the cold season. Then they condense so high that they can be seen even behind the pine forest surrounding the exit point. And it seems that this is a very low cloud falling to the ground.
Bonus: Waimangu, New Zealand – up to 460 meters
The largest geyser that ever existed on the planet is New Zealand's Waimangu, located in the valley of the same name. When ejected, it raised hot water to a height of 460 meters! True, he was active for only 4 years – from 1900 to 1904.
This geyser was awakened by the eruption of the Tarawera volcano. It happened in 1886. After that, the released energy accumulated underground, and finally erupted in the form of a Waimangu geyser. Its emissions occurred every 5-30 hours, irregularly, and during the events up to 800 tons of hot water rose into the air.
This, of course, attracted tourists. Onlookers came from all over the world to watch the spectacular eruptions. And, unfortunately, this led to an accident. On August 31, 1903, four tourists came dangerously close to the mouth – and at that moment an eruption of mud masses occurred. No one survived.
The last eruption took place on November 1, 1904. Since then, Waimangu (by the way, this name is translated from the local language as 'black water') has been inactive. It is believed that the geyser was 'lulled' by a powerful landslide, due to which the water level in the nearby Lake Tarawera dropped by 11 meters.
Attention! This rating is subjective and does not constitute an advertisement and does not serve as a purchase guide. Before buying, you need to consult with a specialist.