Fly Ranch in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert is no ordinary geyser. A faulty well drilled in the early 1900s caused geothermally heated water to burst through surface cracks. Repeated eruptions have left behind mineral deposits, forming a multicoloured mound.
Each time Fly Ranch Geyser erupts, it releases minerals that have dissolved in the scalding water. These minerals solidify when the water cools, creating an ever-growing mound surrounded by terraced rock pools. Vibrant red and green streaks over the mound are the result of thermophilic (heat-loving) algae thriving in the steamy surroundings.
Spouts in Space
Geysers are not only found on Earth. Saturn’s moon Enceladus hosts 101 geysers, while geysers of water vapour were seen spouting on Jupiter’s moon Europa in 2013.