Hekla (Icelandic pronunciation: [ˈhɛhkla] (listen)), or Hecla,[2][3] is a stratovolcano in the south of Iceland with a height of 1,491 m (4,892 ft). Hekla is one of Iceland's most active volcanoes; over 20 eruptions have occurred in and around the volcano since 874. During the Middle Ages, Europeans called the volcano the "Gateway to Hell".

Hekla and Þjórsá
Highest point
Elevation1,488 m (4,882 ft)
Prominence755 m (2,477 ft) 
Coordinates63°59′32″N 19°39′57″W
English translationHooded
Language of nameIcelandic
Mountain typeActive fissure stratovolcano
Last eruptionFebruary to March 2000
First ascentEggert Ólafsson, Bjarni Pálsson, 20 June 1750[1]

Hekla is part of a volcanic ridge, 40 km (25 mi) long. The most active part of this ridge, a fissure about 5.5 km (3.4 mi) long named Heklugjá [ˈhɛhklʏˌcauː], is considered to be within Hekla proper. Hekla looks rather like an overturned boat, with its keel being a series of craters, two of which are generally the most active.[4][5]

The volcano's frequent large eruptions have covered much of Iceland with tephra, and these layers can be used to date eruptions of Iceland's other volcanoes. Approximately 10% of the tephra created in Iceland in the last thousand years has come from Hekla, amounting to 5 km3. Cumulatively, the volcano has produced one of the largest volumes of lava of any in the world in the last millennium, around 8 km3.

Share this article:

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Hekla, and is written by contributors. Text is available under a CC BY-SA 4.0 International License; additional terms may apply. Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.