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Giant Manitoba Sinkhole 2012 Update

Reid Dickie

It was almost exactly a year ago that several acres of a timothy field turned into a huge sinkhole on the north boundary of Riding Mountain National Park as you can see in the picture. My reports and video footage of it remain some of the most-frequented posts on this blog and my YouTube channel. I returned to the site this week and shot a short video update about the sinkhole.

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Dauphin Sinkhole/Landslide – Late Fall Pictures

Reid Dickie

I ventured up to Dauphin in late October and took a few shots of the Dauphin sinkhole which I first reported on back in mid-June. Today the earth has settled even more, the timothy field above it has been cut and baled while the grass in the hole has ripened to a golden colour. The site has been well trodden by the curious for the past four months and trails have developed through and around it. The Vermillion River, once raging and mean, creating landslides along its bank, is now a mere trickle.

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Dauphin Sinkhole August Update

Reid Dickie

It was the middle of June 2011 when three acres of a timothy field on the edge of the Vermillion River north of Riding Mountain National Park slid a hundred feet down creating a huge gap in the earth. Today the timothy field has been cut and baled and the grass at the bottom of the sinkhole is ripe and golden. Curious onlookers have created several paths around the site which seems to have stabilized for now. Watch my short video update of the sinkhole.

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Giant Manitoba Sinkhole Is Getting Deeper! Update June 16

Reid Dickie

Compared to my visit to the sinkhole south of Dauphin a week ago, it is much deeper today. The hole covers at least three acres, the size of two Canadian football fields, and in some spots is now a hundred feet deep with more of the timothy field fallen into the pit. A large section of the field around the centre rim has already shifted down about a foot. It will end up in the chasm soon, too.

It’s difficult to indicate the scale of the hole but the open area you see in the pictures of the sunken field is a small part of the earth that shifted. In the bush around the field and at either end there is much physical turmoil suggesting the sinkhole extends as far as a quarter-mile along the Vermillion River. Along this portion, the river forms the boundary of Riding Mountain National Park. The river, swollen with Riding Mountain rainwater, has caused considerable erosion and property loss along its banks. Though the bottom of the sinkhole is dry with no evidence of river water, there could be a strong link between the moving earth phenomenon and the roiling water. So far, nothing official from a geologist.

Today was muggy and hot with thunderstorms rolling across the prairie. Tomorrow promises to be the same. As you can see from the pictures, the land is lush and green from the rain this year and the timothy continues to flourish a hundred feet below where it germinated. The aura of the site is one of inevitable change, the ever-unfinished business of the earth creating and re-creating itself moment by moment, sinkhole by sinkhole. Earth energies have been loosed and they abound amid new chaos for elemental spirits. Fascinating place! Watch a short video of the site.

 

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Giant Manitoba Sinkhole Update – June 13

Reid Dickie

ReadReidRead is no longer the only place you can get fresh information about the 50-foot-deep sinkhole south of Dauphin. (Updating my opening statement on June 25/11, the only place to get pics and info is my blog and youtube channel. Still! No one has picked this up! Amazing. It gave me over 2600 hits last Sunday but interest is abating now. More info and video on this site soon.) I talked at length today with landowner Anthony Genik who says he’s done a couple of media interviews and there are frequent visitors to the site now. Anthony says the walls are caving in and sliding down a bit more. He thinks the pit is deeper now at the north end, “by a few feet,” which contradicts earlier reports of further drastic sinking. However, there are still pieces of the timothy field breaking away around the outer rim and tumbling into the hole. “It’s still settling, still moving,” explains Anthony. The bottom of the pit is bone dry, no sign of water seeping in from the side or below.

Anthony says the talk about a geologist coming to look at his land “is just gossip, so far.” Since he’s not sure what to call the pit in his field, Anthony is keen to talk with an expert and get some clarity about what happened. It could be a sinkhole, which is what I’ve been calling it, or it could be the result of rotational slump, a phenomenon that usually occurs on coastlines. Anthony said while the central portion fell straight down without much destruction, the northern end received violent shifting with great devastation in the forest.

Whatever we decide to call it, the excellent timothy crop continues to grow tall and green fifty feet below the rest of the field at the bottom of the chasm.

I will be making another firsthand report after a quick trip out to the sinkhole one day this week.

I thank Cheryl Haliski McKay for today’s pictures of the phenomenon. Watch my short video of the sinkhole.

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Giant Manitoba Sinkhole Update

Reid Dickie

I saw this giant sinkhole just outside Riding Mountain National Park south of Dauphin, MB firsthand on Thursday evening. Here is my initial post about it. Today I have some new information about the pit. Already fifty feet deep, the pit is getting deeper! One account thought it was now over 100 feet deep. Here is a picture I took of the sinkhole on Thursday and one of the ford of the Vermillion River which runs near the giant pit. Stay tuned for more on this. Watch my short video clip of the sinkhole.

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Giant Sinkhole in Manitoba

Reid Dickie

The Fisher boys thought they had a pretty good crop of timothy for hay coming along with the wet weather and all. One morning last week a large portion of the crop sank fifty feet straight down leaving a gaping maw in the field. The Vermillion River, swollen with Riding Mountain rains, runs nearby and may have contributed to the phenomenon.

My cousin Vonda who lives at the foot of the north side of Riding Mountain, and I went looking for the sinkhole using directions from the land’s renter. We found a fallow field and trudged across it for a quarter mile toward a crop thinking the sinkhole was nearby. It wasn’t. When we got back to the truck, the land owner had turned up on an ATV wondering who was walking his field. We said we were looking for the sinkhole. Anthony Genik said, “You guys aren’t very good trackers, are you?” We weren’t as we’d driven right past the field less than a quarter mile back. We introduced ourselves and Anthony directed us to the pit, giving us a guided tour.

The sinkhole is huge, its edge clearly defined. Anthony estimated the hole is more than fifty feet deep in some places, it covers about three acres (the size of two Canadian football fields, no end zones) and it appears to have dropped right down. The trees around the field sank as well, also straight down, none falling over. Anthony said a geologist is coming out to view the sinkhole and offer possible explanations for it. Whatever the scientists think, the sight of the sunken earth made me realize our insignificance and yet gave me a thrill to be present with it. Watch my short video clip of the site.

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