By Shannon Lane @shannonroselane
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Videographer / director: Paul Reichert
Producer: Shannon Lane, Ellie Winstanley
Editor: Ian Phillips, Marcus Cooper
This incredibly rare moment was a result of the tectonic plates in the area rifting apart - and was great timing for the Volcano Discovery tour group.
The tour group were led across the volcano by an experienced geologist in January 2017, and all wore gas masks and heat-resistant boots.
Despite the extra precautions, being so close to an active volcano is never going to be entirely safe and the group had to ensure there was always an available exit path.
Founder of Volcano Discovery, Dr. Tom Peiffer said: "Some videos were from only metres away, which was very hazardous as they had to move over fragile, thin-crusted, sharp-edged and still hot lava flows that had been erupted just days before.”
Erta Ale can be found in the Danakil Depression, atop three unstable tectonic plates, making it one of the hottest places on Earth.
Dr. Peiffer said: "The area is in a very hot place. The Danakil is the hottest inhabited area in the world, and even in winter on top of the volcano at 600m elevation, it's typically 35 degrees in daytime.”
Filming the event was a feat in itself, due to the heat radiation and unpredictability of the volcano.
Tom said: "The heat radiation both from the ground, the active lava flows and the lake are extremely intense. You have to protect all exposed skin and you can only be there short moments to snap pictures.
"Most videos are so close that it's impossible to put a tripod up and do more than 20-30 seconds at a time."
The intensity of the event caused the volcanic system to collapse a day after the tour group left.
The volcano enthusiast said: "The places shown in the videos no longer exist in this form and it might take years of decades to reform."