Today I revisited the Salton Buttes Volcano, near the Salton Sea, in Imperial Country, CA. I got a lot of footage and stills of it today. I last visited it this volcano in Feb., and I feel that on this visit today, it was a bit more active. It was really tossing hot mud with frequency, and made various hissing sounds. One volcanic vent sounded as if it was breathing. It was awesome to hear. While we were there, I could smell the usual smells. that of hydrocarbons, but I could also smell what resembled the smell of matches. A kind of burning smell.
It was 110 degrees F there today, and it seemed a bit humid by the volcano, while it felt dry in other parts of the desert. One fellow on this trip wondered if we were seeing a plume as we approached the volcano, still a distance away. We concluded that it was more than likely an agricultural burn off. The volcano hasn't been known to steam off.
This trip was a combo of catching more footage for my documentary California Zipper, a documentary about the rifting zone in California - and taking an earthquake researcher to this site. The research is on the dramatically increase of earthquakes on the Ring of Fire, and increasing sink holes though out the world. This volcano sits by the San Andreas fault, and is a part of the Ring of Fire. Like I say all the time, it is a part of the Mid-Pacific Rift.
Here is an article from San Diego about the Salton Buttes Volcano, and it's potential for an eruption. This is a very good article that tells of how a large earthquake along the San Andreas fault could kick off an eruption. The next article is along the same lines, and tells more of the kind of damage that could be done.