The Toba Super-Eruption: A Global Catastrophe that Young-Earth Creationists

How does Toba fit into Yec?

@r_speir, @stcordova, @J.E.S


AIG has this lengthy discussion of a bunch of issues, including Toba and other very large eruptions, in this paper from 1996. Who knows what the current YEC line is.

The author never satisfactorily answers the problems about a proposed period of eruptions, post or pre flood, and seems to reluctantly settle on during the flood (all of the eruptions!)

It is not clear how one could place the Flood/post-Flood boundary earlier than the mid-Pleistocene; to do so would compress tremendous amounts of volcanism into only 700 years after the Flood. This would cause mass mortality when animals and man are to be scattered and filling the Earth (Genesis 8:15–17; 9:1). It is also not apparent how an environment could be constructed to cope with tremendous post-Flood volcanism without re-opening the windows of heaven to continually purge the atmosphere of volcanic dust and aerosols. Proposing significant volcanism in the post- Flood world would seem to make post-Flood survival as miraculous as the survival of Noah and the animals on the Ark.
Obviously something cleaned the Earth’s atmosphere of volcanic particles and aerosols generated during the tremendous volcanic events of the Flood. Perhaps one of the purposes for the waters from the ‘windows of heaven’ (Genesis 7:11–12) was to clean the atmosphere in preparation for post-Flood life.
If the terrestrial volcanics have been accurately identified, major terrestrial eruptions would have to have been completed prior to stopping the windows of heaven on the 150th day of the Flood (Genesis 7:24; 8:1–4). If this interpretation is correct, the 150th day of the Flood would be late during, or after, the mid-Pliocene; the Flood/post- Flood boundary could be no earlier.179 This also implies that the receding of Flood waters after the 150th day would have eroded much of the late Cainozoic strata, and exposed earlier deposited strata.


This was back in 1996. more than 20 years later there is no more clarity. AiG (read that as Dr. Snelling) has settled on the Flood boundary being at the K/Pg boundary rather than very late Cenozoic.
What I didn’t say in my article but will explore a bit more is that volcanic eruptions can be identified quite well in ice cores. If that is the case then what a YEC might say without any other data is that a supervolcano could be assigned to the Flood year but if its ash is found in a discrete position in an ice core that requires it be post-flood. What is really neat about the Toba eruption is that its signature is found 2500 meters in depth in a Greenland ice core whereas historical eruptions from the past 3000 years are found in the top 100 meters and yet Toba must be a post-flood eruptive event in the YEC timeline and I think a post IceAge event. Well then, how did 2000 meters of ice get deposited post-ice age and in only a few hundreds years?


Antarctica is not something YECs seem to want to explain, either.


There is no problems to volcanic explosions. in fact they make excellent evidence for a YEC position.Even if YEC thinkers don’t yet get it.
its a longer story but YEC must explain the rise of the sea level after the flood, centuries later, to stop further flora/fauna migration. likewise people migration to fulfill the prohecy that hJaphet would be enlarged, Imndo eiropean, at the lose of ham and i guess Shem.
So the evidence all shows massive volcanic action that included fossilization biology.
so the conclusion should be that massive volcanic action , up and down, the spine of the americas and in Northern asia probably, and other places occurred suddenly. this lowered/lifted the continents and displaced the water level enough to stop movement.
Its welcome to force yEC to explain timelines and proven geological events. They need to figure out better and they can do it better.

Don’t be so sure that under YEC an ice-core ash layer has to be post-flood. I’ve seen a YEC argue that the ‘Greenland’ ice-cap was lifted up by the flood from the pre-flood landscape, then deposited again (with the base partially melted through contact with floodwater) back on the post-flood landscape. I’ve seen a different YEC argue that at the poles, the rain that produced the flood fell as snow and was compacted into ice, and that ash layers could result from eruptions during the flood.


I don’t know. Sorry.


Good to hear from you @stcordova.

I can do one better than that >> I don’t care. Sorry!

@stcordova I appreciate the honestly. We all face question we can’t answer. I certainly do too.


Ok, I will be nice just for a moment :slight_smile: but only because @swamidass is talking. Yes, there is a perfectly valid YEC rebuttal to @Joel_Duff 's article, but right now I am not in the mood to give it, nor are your regulars here in the mood to hear it.


Mark Twain: What gets us into trouble is not what we don’t know. It’s what we know for sure that just ain’t so.


I will listen, but a “logical” explanation has to rely on more than just a literal biblical interpretation.

The flood, catastrophic Continental sprint, and total volcanic output (in 150 days!) would take an extraordinary amount and of evidence and a complete suspension of physics.

Honesty, I don’t know why YECs simply claim the entire event was miraculous and can not be explained by science.

“Mind” explains it.


Remember the “stalactite length is evidence for a young earth” thread? Here is a paper linking the Toba eruption to the Greenland and Antarctica ice-cores, along with evidence from European stalagmites.

Direct linking of Greenland and Antarctic ice cores at the Toba eruption (74 ka BP)

Speaking of ice-cores, this ASA paper details many of the problems presented by the ice-cores to the flood model. It is thorough but a bit dated, the progress since has only served to make the flood scenario less tenable.

The GISP2 Ice Core: Ultimate Proof that Noah’s Flood Was Not Global

Ice core evidence is correlated between Greenland and Antarctica with deep sea sediment studies, tree rings, and stalactites. Inclusions studied include volcanic dust, Radiometric B-10 and C-14, stable isotopes of oxygen and hydrogen, methane and CO2 levels. These entrainments reveal earth history involving climatic temperature, volcanic eruptions, solar activity, and magnetic field strength. The many independent but interconnected lines of evidence are a prime example of consilience in science.


All of your “consilience in science” may turn out to be only silly science, and skeptics of a worldwide flood should force themselves to sit quietly and view this piece and give careful thought to the idea that they may have it all wrong and ponder what they are going to answer on the great day when they have to stand before God and give account. If Noah’s ark has been found on Ararat at ~14,000 feet, it is only a matter of time before it is substantiated, and you need to start rehearsing your response if that day should come in your lifetime.

[Just a note to say I am not back on the forum to debate.]

So someone found the remains of an old wooden shed on Ararat. That confirms a literal Noah’s Ark and literal global Noah’s Flood exactly…how? Also why didn’t anyone C14 date the wood? Or determine it it was “gopherwood”?

Where are the research results published?

Let us know when this has been substantiated by evidence. Until then . . .


Will Noah’s Ark Ever Be Found?

Based on the fact that Mount Ararat rests upon volcanic strata on top of sediments laid down by the Flood, we can be rather confident that the Ark will never be found on this mountain. But should we expect to find Noah’s vessel elsewhere? As amazing as it would be to find the famous Ark, the following details make such a scenario highly unlikely.

Repurposed Lumber

The Ark may have been repurposed after the Flood. Immediately following the Flood, wood for construction and fires might not have been readily available for several years. Noah’s family may have torn down much of the structure for these purposes.

Decay Over Time

Wooden structures do not generally last for centuries even if treated with pitch. Consider the condition of barns built 100–200 years ago. Without regular upkeep, they eventually collapse and then disappear because of decay and harsh conditions.

Glacial Movement

Freezing has its share of problems. Some have proposed that the Ark is trapped in a glacier, thus preserving the wood from decay. However, glaciers advance and recede. Such movement would tear the Ark to shreds.


Just picking out that bit.

Noah’s ark has been found many times (a different ark each time). It will continue to be found, as long as there are gullible people who fall for it.


But THIS time, it is obviously the real one.