Science: Restless Mountain

When citizens of Bellingham, Wash., first saw great clouds of smoke rising at least two miles above Mount Baker, 30 miles east of the city, some thought that there must be a forest fire. But that was in March, and the smoking has not stopped since. One of a dozen major volcanoes in the western U.S., the 10,778-ft. Mount Baker is now venting several thousand pounds of sulfurous gases and debris every hour. Right below the mountain's summit, the 1,600-ft.-wide crater is so thick with fumes that geologists can enter only with gas masks. Does this spectacular activity foreshadow the first...

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