Scary rock slides crashed into Curry Village in Yosemite Valley yesterday and the day before. Rick of Hike Half Dome sent me a link yesterday after I went to work so I’m playing catch-up this morning. The latest from the Associated Press:
Chunks of granite crashed to the Yosemite Valley floor in a cloud of dust Wednesday, injuring at least three people, destroying several cabins and knocking down trees, officials said.
The rock slide was the second in two days in that area of the famed park defined by dramatic sheer cliffs.
“We were awakened at 7 to what sounded like thunder and what felt like the earth crumbling apart,” said Deanne Maschmeyer, 41, of Monterey, who was staying in a nearby cabin with her two children. “People were stampeding everywhere and running, running like crazy. I felt like I was running ahead of a tsunami.”
The slide in a lodging and retail area called Curry Village destroyed five cabins and partially damaged at least three others, according to a park statement. The accident left three visitors with minor injuries including scrapes. They were treated and released.
The volume of rocks cascading from the granite face was estimated at about 1,800 cubic yards, or about 180 truck loads, said Vickie Mates, a park spokeswoman.
There was another, smaller rock slide in the same area Tuesday afternoon. No one was injured.
Lots of damage to tents–heard a story of some restoration contract workers being moved from their tents last night; They refused because they didn’t feel safe. The tents they’d been assigned to were completely destroyed this morning. They had been re-reassigned to tents further away.
Pictures of the scenes at the Little Red Tent blog.
KCRA TV also has some nice shots at this photo gallery.
Fresno Bee has Google maps showing where the slide occurred.
The first comment after the S.F. Chron’s story is choice:
Falling rocks in Yosemite? First thing, everybody must wear hardhats from now on. Second, we need to form a committee to explore the options for anti-rock falling barricades to be constructed throughout the park. Finally, we shouldn’t rule out the possibility that this was a terrorist attack and we need to be afraid, very very afraid. In fact, it might have been the work of one of Obama’s pals. I think he visited the park once when he was eight and may have laid the groundwork for this reprehensible act.
Yosemite’s “Daily Report” is two days out of date at the moment but it may have Curry Village status available at some point. This L.A. Times story says the area of Camp Curry near the slide was closed but the rest has been reopened.