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Greatest-ever debris flow video

It starts slowly, but then … whoa!

Dave Petley at the blog of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) nominates this landslide footage as the greatest-ever debris flow video. He wrote:

It starts slowly, but hang in there!

Julian Insarralde in Argentina posted the video to YouTube on January 21, 2016. The flow is located on the flanks Aconcagua, also in Argentina, the highest mountain outside of Asia at 22,838 feet (6,961 meters). Insarralde commented that the flow happened during a three-day trek run by a company called InOut Adventures. He said the sound was “like an airplane” and enabled the team leaders to warn the other hikers. Speaking of the debris flow, Insarralde wrote:

They are things that can happen when we work in real natural environments.

Pelted wrote in his post at agu.org:

This is a classic debris flow – the front end is almost entirely dry (note the dust in the image above) and mostly large boulders. The tail of the debris flow has more water and finer material. Note that the debris flow goes through a series of surges.

Bottom line: Greatest-ever debris flow video? Maybe so! It took place in Argentina and was posted to YouTube on January 21, 2016.

Deborah Byrd