Mystery: Huge Earth Mound Blocks a Russian River

The cause of meteorite and UFO reports about a month ago that moved a massive amount of rock to block a remote river in Russia remains a mystery. Here’s some video of the blockage, which admittedly doesn’t look like much because there is no “before” image to compare.

Some say it was a simple landslide. If so, reports of a blast wave, hot rocks, a hydrogen sulfide smell and a statement that an object entered at an angle and pulled down rocks could just be … bored Russians having fun with reporters?

Hunters Anton Ivanov and Alexander Makan found the dramatically changed landscape on 14 December. 

‘You don’t come across this every day,’ said Ivanov.

‘Such scale, such force.

‘There is lots of earth, thousands of tons. 

‘It can be seen that something flew here, touched the top of the hill and landed in the water.…

Via ST

Bureya River: a landslide but not a meteorite impact in Russia

There are reports in various media outlets today about a large landslide on the Bureya River in the remote Khabarovsk region of Russia, which reportedly was triggered by a meteorite impact.  The Siberian Times for example has the following report:-

Experts are at odds over the cause of an extraordinary landfall amid reports of hot rocks and extraterrestrial meteorite fragments on a 160 metre-high hill partially now damming the Bureya, a tributary of the Amur River.  Some experts believe the phenomenon maybe a landslide but this is disputed especially by those who have visited the remote site, some 1,300 km by road from regional capital Khabarovsk.

Alexey Maslov, the head of Verkhnebureinsky district, said after witnessing the newly formed hill: ‘The riverbed is blocked by a bulk, about 600-to-800 metres wide.

‘The height is from 80 to 160 metres above the ice level.  There is no radiation. An object entered at a sharp angle, pulled down a mound and spread it along the river bed. It is not clear what it is: maybe an explosion, a bomb, or a falling airliner.’

This is picked up by for example the Daily Mail:

“A massive landfall in eastern Russia was caused by a meteorite, a falling UFO or a massive bomb, it was claimed today.  First pictures from a remote location in Khabarovsk region show how the 390 mile long Bureya River was partially dammed by a monumental rock fall.  The top was severed from a large hill with rocks crashing down and forming a new 525 ft-high mound in the river bed.”

The location of the landslide is at: 50.559, 131.472.  Satellite imagery suggests that it occurred between 04:49 UT on 11th December and 00:52 UT on 12th December 2018.  This is a Planet Labs image of the failed slope and debris pile:-

Bureya River

Planet Labs image of the landslide on the Bureya River. PlanetScope Ortho image collected 13th December 2018 …

The landslide appears to be about 500 metres wide and up to about 1.5 km long.  It does appear to have blocked the Bureya River, although the debris pile does not appear to be excessively high close to the toe of the failed slope. …

Reader comment:

… many outlets reported that Russian president ordered the military to be ready to blast the new dam that blocks 28% of reservoir volume.

“Following instructions from Russian President Vladimir Putin, the Ministry of Defense joined forces to clean up the bed of the Bureya River, which was blocked by a collapsed hill.

Local scientists already expressed a concern that blasting the dam may trigger another landslide.

Read more

… Local hunter Anton Ivanov who found the landscape on December 14, recalls seeing “thousands of tons of earth”.

He said: “It smelled like hydrogen sulphide and vapour comes out in some places. We even found a spot on the very top where there are warm stones, we used them to keep our hands warm.”

Another eyewitness insists it “cannot be man-made”. They added: “Either some building works started or a UFO collapsed here.”

Alexey Maslov, the head of Verkhnebureinsky district, believes the “object entered at a sharp angle, pulled down the mound  – and spread it along the river bed”. …

And fellow expert Dr Evgeny Zubko, from the School of Natural Sciences at the Far Eastern Federal University, said local residents had noted “a blast wave”.

He added: “Whether it will be possible to find the fragments of a meteorite depends on the parameters of the fall – and good luck.”

Via Sun

“It smells like hydrogen sulphide and vapour comes out in some places. We even found a spot on the very top where there are warm stones, we used them to keep our hands warm. It looks like it was very hot there. The ice edges are slim as if they were in boiling water.”

Via MysterUniv

… there have been no reports of rocket tests that went astray here, let alone plane crashes. 

Those who have seen the carnage insisted ‘it cannot be man-made’, he said.

His view is that this was a meteorite strike from a’huge’ lump of space rock block 40 metres of the river channel. 

‘We are trying to find the explanation for this incident. I insist that it was a meteorite,’ he said.

Evgeny Zubko, a cosmic dust expert from the School of natural Sciences at the Far Eastern Federal University, said an unnoticed  meteorite is a possible cause.

The mysterious river-blocking mound of dirt is keeping water from this power plant

As of right now, there’s no crater and no debris –just an 800-ton mountain of dirt that wasn’t there a few weeks ago and is now blocking a river that drives the downstream Bureyskaya hydro power station. That means it’s costing someone money

Via MysterUniv

If there was a human tool to move that much rock at once without radiation it would be a notable technological development.

Could a meteor cause the sulfur smell? I think so. This is from one study of multiple meteorites:

Troilite is the chief sulfur component of iron meteorites ... Stony meteorites contain a wide variety of sulfur compounds including water and acid soluble sulfides, elemental sulfur, water and acid soluble sulfates and unidentified components soluble only in aqua regia. 

Via SciDirect

What really happened to block the Bureya River? I’ll update this post if an answer surfaces.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s