Small Quakes Shake Old Faithful Area

A series of small earthquakes shook the Old Faithful area but caused no damage.

The quakes occurred just before midnight Monday.

“It woke up a lot of people,” said Henry Heasler, Yellowstone’s lead geologist.

In all, seven earthquakes were recorded over a 10-minute period. The epicenter was southwest of Lone Star geyser, which is about four miles southeast of Old Faithful.

The first and largest quake measured at a magnitude of 2.8 and started at 11:52 p.m. A minute later, a magnitude 2.3 earthquake hit and, four minutes later, there was a magnitude 2.5 earthquake. Several other smaller ones also were recorded.

An interpretive ranger at Old Faithful heard the quakes and felt the shaking, Heasler said.

On Oct. 14, a swarm of more than 70 small earthquakes hit the Old Faithful area over several hours. The largest was a magnitude 2.4.

Heasler said earthquake swarms are not unusual for Yellowstone’s active geologic life.