Volcanic Springs

Geysers, Hot Springs,
Mud Pots, and Fumaroles

Chocolate Pots

If you know where to go it's quite easy to reach the Chocolate Pots. They are located along Gibbon River next to a roadway turnout approximately 1.7 km (1 mile) north of the branch-off to the parking lot at Artists' Paintpots. Although some of the Chocolate Pots can be seen from the road, the best viewpoints are next to the river. Even if the river bank is steep and a little bit slippery, it's worth the effort to climb downslope. The RCN database lists 21 different features, but most of them are no more than small vents with hardly notable sinter mounds. Only a few springs show the name-giving, conical bulged sinter deposits in pronounced shape. These orange-brown mounds consist mainly of precipitated iron oxide, mixed with silica. Compared to more typical hot springs of Yellowstone the temperature of chocolate pot springs is only moderate, around 50 °C (130 °F) or less.

One of the most impressive features is Chocolate Pot GCPNN002 on the east bank. Strictly speaking GCPNN002 is the designation of the vent on top of the mound. Two satellite vents half way downslope to the right and to the left are listed as GCPNN001 and GCPNN003.

Chocolate Pot GCPNN002:

Chocolate Pot GCPNN002 Yellowstone

Chocolate Pots Yellowstone
Also on the east bank, but 20 m (65 feet) farther south, Chocolate Pot GCPNN011 can be found.

Chocolate Pot GCPNN011:

Chocolate Pots GCPNN011 and  GCPNN012 Yellowstone

At the base of GCPNN011, almost at water level, the small cone of GCPNN012 shows a river smoothened surface. Note the small spouter beyond GCPNN012 in the river. It is not listed in the RCN database.

Chocolate Pot GCPNN012:

Chocolate Pot GCPNN012 Yellowstone

The last one to be shown is also the most gorgeous one. Chocolate Pot GCPNN019 sits south of GCPNN011 on the west bank of the river. In this case the composition of different iron oxides (hematite, limonite) looks like a chocolate pot topped with custard sauce.

Chocolate Pot GCPNN019:

Chocolate Pot GCPNN019 Yellowstone

Chocolate Pots Yellowstone

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