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Lava Waterfall

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    Lava Waterfall


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For the first time in three years, lava from a volcano on Hawaii's Big Island has crept down miles of mountainside and is dripping into the Pacific Ocean—creating new land and a stunning show for visitors.

Thousands of people from around the world have swarmed Volcanoes National Park to view the 2,000-degree molten rock from Kilauea, one of the world's most active volcanoes. They're also hearing and smelling it.

Pablo Aguayo, of Santiago, Chile, took a sunrise boat tour of the flow earlier this month.

"It's pretty amazing," he says. "You start in the middle of the ocean in the darkness, and you end up in this beautiful lava falls."

Aguayo could feel the lava's heat, and it smelled "super funny."

The billowy, bright-orange lava crackles and hisses. It reeks of sulfur and scorched earth, as it oozes across the landscape and off seaside cliffs.

When hot rocks hit the water, they expel plumes of steam and gas—and sometimes explode.

Reaching the flow requires a boat, a helicopter, or strong legs. The hike to where the lava meets the sea is 10 miles round-trip on a gravel road surrounded by miles of treacherous rock.

It's hard to predict when the current flow will stop. It could slow down any day—or keep cascading into the sea for months. Only God the Creator knows!