El Misti

Photo of this volcano
Google Earth icon
Google Earth Placemark
  • Peru
  • Peru
  • Stratovolcano
  • 1985 CE
  • Country
  • Subregion Name
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 16.294°S
  • 71.409°W

  • 5822 m
    19096 ft

  • 354010
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

  • Volcano
    Number

15 January-21 January 2014

Instituto Geofísico del Perú (IGP) reported that seismicity at El Misti increased during January, and a seismic swarm consisting of 119 volcano-tectonic events was detected during 14-15 January. Despite the increase, activity remained at a low level.

Source: Instituto Geofísico del Perú (IGP)



 Available Weekly Reports


2014: January


15 January-21 January 2014

Instituto Geofísico del Perú (IGP) reported that seismicity at El Misti increased during January, and a seismic swarm consisting of 119 volcano-tectonic events was detected during 14-15 January. Despite the increase, activity remained at a low level.

Source: Instituto Geofísico del Perú (IGP)


Summary of eruption dates and Volcanic Explosivity Indices (VEI).

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
1985 Unknown Confirmed 1 Historical Observations
[ 1870 Mar ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain 1  
[ 1869 Sep ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain 1  
[ 1831 Aug ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain 1  
[ 1830 Aug ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain 1  
[ 1826 Aug ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain 1  
1787 Jul 28 1787 Oct 10 Confirmed 1 Historical Observations
1784 Jul 9 Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1677 May 2 Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
[ 1599 ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain 1  
[ 1542 ] [ Unknown ] Uncertain 1  
1454 ± 16 years Unknown Confirmed 2 Historical Observations
1350 ± 50 years Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (corrected)
0760 ± 100 years Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (corrected)
0090 ± 300 years Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (corrected)
0080 BCE ± 75 years Unknown Confirmed 4 Radiocarbon (corrected)
0310 BCE ± 100 years Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (corrected)
2230 BCE ± 200 years Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (corrected)
3510 BCE ± 150 years Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (corrected)
4020 BCE ± 200 years Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (corrected)
5390 BCE ± 75 years Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (corrected)
7190 BCE ± 150 years Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (corrected)

The following references are the sources used for data regarding this volcano. References are linked directly to our volcano data file. Discussion of another volcano or eruption (sometimes far from the one that is the subject of the manuscript) may produce a citation that is not at all apparent from the title. Additional discussion of data sources can be found under Volcano Data Criteria.

Bullard F M, 1962. Volcanoes of Southern Peru. Bull Volc, 24: 443-453.

de Silva S L, Francis P W, 1990. Potentially active volcanoes of Peru - observations using Landsat Thematic Mapper and Space Shuttle imagery. Bull Volc, 52: 286-301.

de Silva S L, Francis P W, 1991. Volcanoes of the Central Andes. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 216 p.

Finizola A, Lenat J-F, Macedo O, Ramos D, Thouret J-C, Sortino F, 2004. Fluid circulation and structural discontinuities inside Misti volcano (Peru) inferred from self-potential measurements. J Volc Geotherm Res, 135: 343-360.

Gonzalez-Ferran O, 1995. Volcanes de Chile. Santiago: Instituto Geografico Militar, 635 p.

Green J, Short N M, 1971. Volcanic Landforms and Surface Features: a Photographic Atlas and Glossary. New York: Springer-Verlag, 519 p.

Hantke G, Parodi I, 1966. Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. Catalog of Active Volcanoes of the World and Solfatara Fields, Rome: IAVCEI, 19: 1-73.

IAVCEI, 1973-80. Post-Miocene Volcanoes of the World. IAVCEI Data Sheets, Rome: Internatl Assoc Volc Chemistry Earth's Interior..

Legros F, 2001. Tephra stratigraphy of Misti volcano, Peru. J South Amer Earth Sci, 14: 15-29.

Parodi-I A, 1979. . (pers. comm.).

Ruprecht P, Worner G, 2007. Variable regimes in magma systems documented in plagioclast zoning patterns: El Misti stratovolcano and Andahua monogenetic cones. J Volc Geotherm Res, 165: 142-162.

Thouret J-C, Finizola A, Fornari M, Legeley-Padovani A, Suni J, Frechen M, 2001. Geology of El Misti volcano near the city of Arequipa, Peru. Geol Soc Amer Bull, 113: 1593-1610.

Tort A, Finizola A, 2005. The buried caldera of Misti volcano, Peru, revealed by combining a self-potential survey with elliptic Fourier function analysis of topography. J Volc Geotherm Res, 141: 283-297.

Wilson C J N, Houghton B F, Kamp P J J, McWilliams M O, 1995b. An exceptionally widespread ignimbrite with implications for pyroclastic flow emplacement. Nature, 378: 605-607.

El Misti, Peru's most well-known volcano, is a symmetrical andesitic stratovolcano with nested summit craters that towers above the city of Arequipa. The modern symmetrical cone, constructed within a small 1.5 x 2 km wide summit caldera that formed between about 13,700 and 11,300 years ago, caps older Pleistocene volcanoes that underwent caldera collapse about 50,000 years ago. A large scoria cone has grown with the 830-m-wide outer summit crater of El Misti. At least 20 tephra-fall deposits and numerous pyroclastic-flow deposits have been documented during the past 50,000 years, including a pyroclastic flow that traveled 12 km to the south about 2000 years ago. El Misti's most recent activity has been dominantly pyroclastic, and strong winds have formed a parabolic dune field of volcanic ash extending up to 20 km downwind. An eruption in the 15th century affected Inca inhabitants living near the volcano. Some reports of historical eruptions may represent increased fumarolic activity.