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Processes of exfoliation-induced rock falls: Recent studies from California’s Sierra Nevada

October 26, 2017 @ 7:00 pm

- $1 - $5

Granitic rocks in the Sierra Nevada are known for their dramatic displays of exfoliation – the “peeling off” of the outer layer of rock that often manifests itself in massive arches and domes such as found in Yosemite and Kings Canyon National Parks among many other high and low peaks in the Sierra Nevada mountains. When exposed in vertical exposures these exfoliation “sheets” (as they are often called) can fracture and break off causing potentially hazardous rock falls. But what causes fracture and over what time scales might exfoliation-related fracture occur? This presentation will share recent research on the process of exfoliation and specifically on what types of triggering mechanisms might be responsible for rock falls that occur on hot sunny days when other more typical triggers such as precipitation and freeze/thaw action are absent. In this context an explanation for recent exfoliation events occurring in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California will be described.Speaker: Brian Collins USGS


October 26, 2017
7:00 pm
$1 - $5