Landslide Talk

Soil and ash exposed and subsequently eroded at the Starrigavan landslide. Notice the part with more coarse rock that has some roots coming out in the center of the photo. It’s likely this is a soil pipe (see below).

This evening I attended a talk by Dennis Landwehr, a soils scientist with the forest service who has studied landslides in Southeast Alaska for many years. It was an interesting talk with a lot of information, and I learned some things I hadn’t known about before. One thing I thought was interesting (that I also happen to have a picture showing) is a soil pipe. These are places where water moves through the soil more easily, but if/when they collapse/break, the subsequent slowdown of water transport can lead to over-saturated soils and subsequent landslides.

I spent some time sitting today. No hummingbird visit while I was out (though I did see the female visit the upstairs feeder several times). The juncos were quite active, and I did noticed at least a couple of chickadees. I listened for areas of activity and quiet, but the layout of the area where I sit (house at my back) and the significant traffic noise made it a challenge. It did seem like the birds were quiet in my zone as I first settled in (not surprising), but became more active after a while. I could hear activity on the east side of the house throughout my sit, and it seemed like there was activity in the bushes along the fence for most of the time. Unlike some other days, I didn’t hear much in the mid-distance.

Connor spotted a Sharp-shinned Hawk that flew over the house this afternoon.

Temperatures were noticeably cooler today. Still well above freezing at sea level, but there was a chill in the air that had been absent recently. Snow level (based on where trees were noticeably covered) had dropped to about 2500 feet, or maybe a bit lower. Many of the peaks remained shrouded in clouds, so it was hard to tell just where the snow got down to. There were some pretty heavy showers during the day at times, though the clouds started breaking up later this afternoon. By late this evening it was mostly clear.

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