California

California is now 13 acres bigger

This May 22 aerial photo provided by John Madonna shows a massive landslide along California's coastal Highway 1 near Big Sur, Calif.

This May 22 aerial photo provided by John Madonna shows a massive landslide along California's coastal Highway 1 near Big Sur, Calif.  (John Madonna via AP, File)

A recent landslide is the largest a California Department of Transportation representative is aware of, and the U.S. Geological Survey explains just how big it was.

The May 20 slide in Big Sur involved more than a million tons of rock and dirt, and by analyzing before-and-after photos, the USGS has determined that roughly 13 acres of "new California land" were created, per a Thursday tweet.

In a Facebook post, it provides some other ways of looking at the slide, writing that it was big enough to have "filled 800 Olympic-sized swimming pools [and] buried Highway 1 more than 65 feet deep."

The Mercury News provides a visual of its own, saying the new bit of California is as big as 10 football fields—"an exhilarating event for a state used to watching its edges erode." Kevin Schmidt with the USGS agrees, telling the paper, "It has been a number of decades since something this large increased our land mass."

The falling rock covered a quarter-mile stretch of Highway 1, and the state's transportation department believes it'll take more than a year to get it clear for passage again.

Click to read the full story.

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