Post-wildfire geologic hazards

The year 2020 has won the award for worst fire season of the decade, and it isn’t over. But even as the fires cease and the final embers crumble, there may be another natural disaster on the horizon: wildfire-associated landslides. Washingtonians who live on or below hillsides—especially in areas impacted by recent wildfires—should be aware […]

New Tsunami Simulation Videos for Grays Harbor and Willapa Bay

To help residents of Washington’s coastline prepare for the next tsunami, we have released a series of new simulation videos. These simulations show tsunami inundation (extent and depth of on-land flooding) and velocity (wave speed) in Grays Harbor and Willapa Bay following a modeled Cascadia M9.0 earthquake and resultant tsunami. The videos provide an estimate […]

Preserving notes of geologists past

Since the beginning of civilization, geologists have stared at rock outcrops, analyzing and examining them and then scribbling their observations in little notebooks. From Aristotle, the Greek philosopher who was the first to speculate on record about the slowness of geologic processes, to Pliny the Younger, who wrote extensive letters regarding the eruption of Mount […]

New Landslide Inventory of Western Whatcom County Published

We are pleased to announce the publication of our Landslide Inventory of Western Whatcom County. Landslide Inventory of Western Whatcom County, Washington Abstract An updated inventory of landslides was produced by interpreting 1,398 mi2 of lidar data in western Whatcom County. Following published protocols, mapping yielded 1,911 landslides and 2,470 fans. High landslide density was […]

Older and Wiser After 130 Years

The Washington Geological Survey begins The State-mandated pursuit to understand geology and mineral resources in Washington began on February 25, 1890. The first such entity was called the Washington Mining Bureau, tasked with pursuing mining and mineral resources across the state. George Bethune, a Canadian-born chemist and mineral assayer was hired as the first State […]