National Geographic : 1966 Jul
Moonscape on earth: Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes in Katmai National Monument-largest of all Park Service preserves-offers the eerie spec tacle of fire wed to ice. In 1912 the floor of this Alaskan valley erupted. The new volcano-Nova rupta-spewed up tons of incandescent pumice, opened countless steaming fissures, and thrust up a huge lava plug. Between 1912 and 1930, seven Society-sponsored expeditions discovered, named, and photographed the inferno (below). Park Service Board members, landing by U. S. Air Force helicopters, explore the plug in Nova rupta's crater. They find smoke holes dormant but not dead. Touch a match to a fumarole, and gases trapped underground ignite; nearby vents puff up as if in sympathy, intriguing Frank Melvin (left) of the Park Service, GEOGRAPHIC writer N. T. Kenney, and Mrs. Melville Bell Grosvenor.