Friday, October 3, 2014

Oso/Hazel Follow up by KUOW and Dan Miller Visits my Old Field Area

KUOW has been doing a series of stories on the Oso slide. One with a bit by Dan Miller is HERE. And the video associated with it:

Miller wrote and published reports as well as a paper on the Hazel (later Oso) landslide. The work was important in that he and his coauthors developed an approach to assessing ground water recharge to deep-seated glacial related landslides. That work as well as the fact the slide blocked the Stillaguamish River in 2006, was why many geologists were well aware of the potential risk of the Hazel landslide. I assessed groundwater recharge to landslide areas on other projects and have generally followed the policy struggles on how to deal with ground water recharge to deep-seated landslide in terms of forestry, and hence, am familiar with Miller's work.

An interesting bit about the video is that it is it was filmed in my graduate research area. I was not paying much attention to slope issues and debris flows as Miller is doing - my work was on the granite rock he is filmed walking around on. The area is below a glacial area and the glaciers have retreated exposing bare rock and leaving behind piles of glacial moraine material. The area in the video is also subject to avalanche - the knocked down trees of various ages shown in the clip. Between my first and second field seasons a particularly large avalanche tore down the slope splintering old growth cedar forest.

Avalanche deposit at Cascade River Road

 The road to the Cascade Pass trail head below this area has been a challenge to keep open.


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