Pele’s hair does not only occur in Hawaii. According to Duffield (1977), it can be found near other volcanoes around the world, for example in Nicaragua (Masaya), Italy (Etna) and Ethiopia (Erta’ Ale).
It can be found all over the places, but it is usually found in gaps in the ground, mostly near vents, skylights, ocean entry, or in corners where Pele’s hair can accumulate.
In Iceland, for example, it’s called “Nornahár,” or Witch’s Hair.
It is not recommended to touch Pele’s hair, because it is very brittle and very sharp, and small broken pieces can enter the skin. Gloves should be worn while examining it.
These little wads of hair are called “Nornahár” in Icelandic,
meaning Witch’s Hair. Photo/Þorvaldur Þórðarson, Jarðvísindastofnun Íslands
photo shows how much of Pele’s Hair can accumulate in a parking lot immediately downwind of Halemaʻumaʻu Crater on Hawaii Island.
The formation of Pele’s hair occurs when molten basaltic glass is blowing-out from lava (Duffield et al., 1977). The strands are created when molten lava is ejected into the air and form tiny droplets, which elongate perfectly straight, from a lava fountain. It usually forms in lava fountains, lava cascades, and vigorous lava flows.