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Mar 7 / Dave Schumaker

Hikers discover large landslide

Hikers in Washington state last week came across the remnants of a recent, large landslide that was up to 30 acres in size. Scientists at the USGS aren’t sure when it happened, but the hypothesis is that it occurred within the past few months during heavy rains.

The landslide is 750 feet wide and about half a mile long.

Landslide near Table Mountain in Washington

Image Credit: jaimito on portlandhikers.org

Nelsen told The Associated Press on Friday that it appeared that three to five acres of a rock cliff with timber on it slid, mowing down approximately 30 acres of old growth trees. He estimated the slide was about 750 feet wide and about a half mile in length.

Scientists familiar with the area said the rock slide appears to be old lava atop an underlying formation of sedimentary rock that naturally dips toward the south.

A seismologist with the USGS said that it might be possible to try and determine when the landslide happened by looking at data from seismometers in the region. If the movement was large enough, it might have left a mark in some of the seismograms.

Portlandhikers.org has more information and discussion, as well as some absolutely incredible pictures.

Money quote from the linked article: “It does provide a scientific opportunity, absolutely,” Evarts said. “Geologists tend to get excited about disasters because we learn so much from them.”

Lastly, check out this amazing video of a landslide in Japan a number of year ago. Skip to about 25 seconds in and prepare to be amazed. Absolutely insane.

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