Earthquake monitoring at Newberry volcano
Newberry Volcano is one of the most seismically quiet of the monitored volcanoes in Washington and Oregon. The first seismic station was installed near Newberry in 1987, and up until 2011, with only a single station operating at Newberry, there were only 7 earthquakes located by the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network within 20 km (12 mi) of the caldera; none were located inside. In 2011 the Cascades Volcano Observatory installed 8 real-time seismic and deformation (GPS) stations around Newberry, significantly bolstering monitoring capabilities. In the first six months of operation, the network recorded only one earthquake within the caldera and no abnormal deformation, confirming the volcano is relatively quiet.
The Newberry seismic network is far from quiet, however; it routinely picks up signals from multiple non–volcanic sources, including rumbles from nearby thunderstorms (also electrical spikes if lightning is close by), “pops” from the fracturing of lake ice when Paulina and East Lakes begin to freeze in the late fall and early winter, and sonic booms from passing jets.