Landslide Partially Blocking Eel River

Across the river from Renner Station between Garberville and Redway, there has been a landslide into the South Fork of the Eel River.  Mud, trees and debris about 120 feet wide and 500-600 feet long have spilled out of the west side of the river and is at least halfway across, according to Diana Totten, a local who has worked in construction, firefighting and volunteered with rescue crews.  No homes are threatened and the river is still moving and seems likely to continue running freely.  However, there are quite a few redwood trees sticking out of the river. Don Puzin, who works nearby at the Caltrans’ office said, “I heard what sounded like a tree falling.  I heard a crash…It sounded big. It roared. and went and looked around but I didn’t see anything.  I wondered what it was….It was between 1 and 2 P.M.”

Diana Totten is curious. “It is a drought year and we are having these large slides.”  She wondered, “What the hell happens to our land that it would blow out on a day that drizzles?… [The slide] has old growth redwoods and massive firs…I went to the top…  There is no water diversions.  No roads.  It is a big plateau.  There is quite a bit of water running out to it….It left a gaping hole.”

Totten isn’t very worried about this slide getting larger. “The mountain doesn’t go very high there.  I don’t think there is a whole lot potential for more slides.”  But she adds, “If we get a high water, which there is a storm coming tomorrow, it can possibly wash the trees into bridges and water systems…Redway water is downstream.”

Kim Sallaway who took the photos in this post later in the day says the river is already running clear there doesn’t expect there to be any problems resulting from the slide.




See more amazing photos by Kim Sallaway here.



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