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More recent paleomagnetic studies show the onset of the eruption occurred between AD 1040 and AD 1100 (Ort et al., 2002). (2008b) Mineralogy of Fumarole Deposits at Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument, Northern Arizona: Rocks and Minerals, 83 (6) p.534-544. The ~115 year duration has also been reevaluated because cinder cones typically erupt only once, and for much shorter durations. The San Francisco Volcanic Field lies on the southern margin of the Colorado Plateau near its boundary with the Basin and Range Province (Figure 1). This field, covering an area of ~5000 km2, extends eastward in an irregular belt from near Williams, Arizona, to the Little Colorado River just east of Flagstaff. Extensive field examinations reveal no weathering and/or erosion horizons within the layered blanket of fallout cinders suggesting that the pulses of activity all occurred within a short period of time. The lack of geochemical variation between the cinder eruptions and lava flows (Hanson et al, 2008), as well as the recent paleomagnetic and dendrochemical studies (Ort et al., 2002), are also consistent with a much shorter eruption duration. Two lava flows, the Kana’a and the Bonito flows, effused from the base of the cone. (2008a) Quaternary volcanism in the San Francisco Volcanic Field: Recent basaltic eruptions that profoundly impacted the northern Arizona landscape and disrupted the lives of nearby residents.
Archaeologists refer to these people as the Sinagua, which is a contraction of the Spanish words “sin” and “agua” meaning without water.
Five distinct fumarole incrustations are present near the central vent of the volcano.
These incrustations are composed predominantly of gypsum which is locally overgrown with opal or a thin coating of sulfur.
This fissure eruption ended shortly after it began as activity became focused on the northern end of the fissure.
Strombolian eruption built Sunset Crater Volcano and blanketed an area of at least 2000 km2 with cinders.