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Yellowstone National Park in Park County, Wyoming — The American West (Mountains)
 

Steamboat Geyser

Learning to Love the Unpredictable

 
 
Steamboat Geyser Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 29, 2015
1. Steamboat Geyser Marker
Inscription.
When Steamboat Geyser erupts, it can rocket a column of scalding water 90-120 meters into the air – two to three times the average height of Old Faithful. Steam roars for twenty-four hours after. Odds are against your witnessing this drama, however, since Steamboat’s major eruptions occur 4 days to 50 years apart.

In Yellowstone’s geyser basins, unpredictability is the pattern. Old Faithful’s relatively predictable intervals are the exception. An earthquake could disrupt Old Faithful’s timetable, or a shift in subterranean plumbing could allow Steamboat more frequent eruptions.

Eruption Indicators
Though order and symmetry in nature can be reassuring, true geyser gazers appreciate surprise and suspense. Watch the larger, upslope vent for massive, frequent bursts to heights of at least 5-10 meters, accompanied by heavy runoff – Steamboat’s only known eruption indicators.

When Steamboat Geyser has a major eruption, the deep pool of nearby Cistern Spring drains almost completely. Gradually, within a day or two after Steamboat’s eruption, Cistern begin to refill.
 
Erected by National Park Service.
 
Location. 44° 43.406′ N, 110° 42.205′ W. Marker is in Yellowstone National
Steamboat Geyser Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 29, 2015
2. Steamboat Geyser Marker
Park, Wyoming, in Park County. Marker is on Grand Loop Road, on the left when traveling north. Click for map. Marker is located in the Back Basin section of Norris Geyser Basin. Marker is in this post office area: Yellowstone National Park WY 82190, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Cistern Spring (within shouting distance of this marker); Echinus (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Echinus (about 700 feet away); Minute Geyser (approx. 0.2 miles away); Emerald Spring (approx. 0.2 miles away); Norris Geyser Basin (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Norris Area (approx. 0.2 miles away); Yellowstone National Park (approx. 0.2 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Yellowstone National Park.
 
More about this marker. Photographs of an erupting Steamboat Geyser and a drained Cistern Spring appear on the marker.
 
Categories. Natural Features
 
Steamboat Geyser Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 29, 2015
3. Steamboat Geyser Marker
Marker at the Norris Geyser Basin image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 29, 2015
4. Marker at the Norris Geyser Basin
Second Steamboat Geyser Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 29, 2015
5. Second Steamboat Geyser Marker
Steamboat Geyser
World’s Tallest Active Geyser
Unpredictable, Infrequent Major
Eruptions of More Than 300 Feet (91m)
Last Major Eruption: September 3, 2014
Frequent Minor Eruptions
10-40 Feet (3 -12 m)
Steamboat Geyser image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 29, 2015
6. Steamboat Geyser
Cistern Spring image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 29, 2015
7. Cistern Spring
This spring drains after a major eruption of Steamboat Geyser.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 138 times since then and 12 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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