Yellowstone sees strongest quake in 34 years.

Early morning earthquake was in area NNE of Norris Geyser Basin-

The big news on the web yesterday was about the moderate tremblor at Los Angeles. However, a quake about a third as strong happened inside Yellowstone National Park 4 miles north by northeast of Norris. This doesn’t mean there is about to be an eruption at Yellowstone or anything like that. The Yellowstone area has many quakes, but they rarely reach this low moderate strength, mag. 4.8 on the Richter scale.

In quake news, there is also an ongoing quake swarm in Oklahoma, probably due to hydraulic fracking fluids.

All three stories are worthy news even though no one died.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey:

Today’s event is the largest earthquake at Yellowstone since February 22, 1980, and occurred near the center of a region of recent ground uplift described in a YVO Information Statement on February 18, 2014. The Yellowstone Volcano Observatory has been tracking this uplift episode for about 7 months.

As discussed in the March 3, 2014 YVO Monthly Update, seismicity in the general region of the uplift has been elevated for several months. A previous period of uplift in this area occurred between 1996 and 2003, and it was also accompanied by elevated seismicity.

A USGS field team is in Yellowstone and will visit the area near the earthquake’s epicenter today. The team will look for any surface changes that the earthquake may have caused, and for possible effects to the hydrothermal system at Norris Geyser Basin.

Based on the style and location of today’s earthquake, at this time YVO sees no indication of additional geologic activity other than continuing seismicity.

The Yellowstone Volcano Observatory (YVO) provides long-term monitoring of volcanic and earthquake activity in the Yellowstone National Park region. Yellowstone is the site of the largest and most diverse collection of natural thermal features in the world and the first National Park. YVO is one of the five USGS Volcano Observatories that monitor volcanoes within the United States for science and public safety.

YVO Member agencies: USGS, Yellowstone National Park, University of Utah, University of Wyoming, UNAVCO, Inc., Wyoming State Geological Survey, Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology, Idaho Geological Survey







  1. Barb Rupers Avatar
    Barb Rupers

    My cousin was working near West Yellowstone when a 7.5 earthquake occurred in 1959; my mother and father in-law had planned on staying in the Rock Creek Campground in Madison Canyon but decided to head on north to our place near Whitefish, Montana. It was buried under the slide that formed Quake Lake. We felt the earthquake about 400 miles away. Most of the casualties were caused by the slide.

  2. Immer Treue Avatar
    Immer Treue

    Damn Canadian wolves!

  3. Ida Lupine Avatar
    Ida Lupine

    Ha, I’d say damn wolf haters/hunters. Maybe Mother Nature isn’t so happy. 🙂

  4. alf Avatar

    It’s gotta be Obama’s fault !

  5. Jon Way Avatar

    I was actually driving into the park at the time of the quake and was probably rounding Mammoth High Bridge area at that time heading east and never knew a thing until someone on the east coast texted me about it. Granted there was a lot of falling snow so the car was already a little shaky on the ice…

  6. Nancy Avatar

    “Commentary with one of the clips by a self-described survivalist wearing camouflage, dark sunglasses and a black watch cap suggests the wildlife exodus may be tied to “an imminent eruption here at Yellowstone.”



Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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Ralph Maughan