A fascinating “Nick on the Rocks” video about Dry Falls in Washington state.
Nick describes it as “An ice-age flood, with water rocks, mud and icebergs 3½ miles wide on a thundering journey to the Pacific Ocean.”
The flood raced down the Columbia River with 10 times the power of all the world’s rivers combined.
I discuss this flood in detail in “Not by Fire but by Ice,” (Chapter 15, “Noah’s Deluge”).
I’ve made it a point to visit many of the viewing locations including Dry Falls, the Wallula Gap, and the Clark Fork River. That’s where a tongue of ice, the Purcell Lobe, moved south from Canada and dammed up the river to create Glacial Lake Missoula.
Glacial Lake Missoula was bigger than all five Great Lakes put together. When the ice dam broke, the ensuing flood, also known as the great scablands flood, created Dry Falls.
When you view the video, even when you visit the area in person, it is almost impossible to understand the vast scale of what you’re seeing. This photo showing the visitor center in relation to the size of the falls helps a little.
Nick Zentner is the science outreach and education coordinator for the Department of Geological Sciences at Central Washington University. He has produced more than 40 short videos about Central Washington geology.
I’ll be posting more fascinating episodes of “Nick on the Rocks” in the days to come.