Jump to content

Rockfall Question

Recommended Posts

  • Replies 61
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

I would like to thank every one here for this discussion. Last night I was with a group of friends on Red Mountain the notorious choss pile above Commonwealth Basin. I had brought an old MSR helmet bought at a grage sale for a couple bucks. On the descent a member of our party kicked loose a cantalope sized rock. I headed for anoverhang when I heard the cry but unfortunatly the rock followed my dodge like one of the knives from House of Flying Daggers. It hit square on top of the helmet leaving ascratch but not much more. If it were not for this discussion I might not be here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have observed that the rock in dirty gullies, where a lot of rock is embedded in steep dirt, is much more prone to fall after a rain. The dirt sets up like mortar when dry, but turns back into squishy mud when wet. A lot of climbs in the cascades involve passage through these dirty gullies. Whole mountains in the Olympics seem to be made of rubble glued together with dirt. I think that there are plenty of places where rock fall is worse after rain. Melting snow can have exactly the same effect as rain.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, Nick, I've been thinking the same thing while reading through this thread. I generally try to avoid gullys as much as possible. Especially in the rain or during snow melt, as you say. Any place where terrain dumps its garbage is a good place not to spend a lot of time.


There was a large fresh cut for a road that I knew about that consisted of a dirt rock mix. I sat across from it in the rain a few times just to watch things come apart and crash down the slope. I can also imagine the same affect as a result of water percolating through one of those dirty gullys.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...