A mysterious incident, believed to be meteorological in nature, knocked down over 100 trees in a Washington state national park and has left weather experts baffled.
Putting a unique twist on the old adage of a tree falling in the forest, the head-scratching event occurred in the early morning hours of January 27th at the Olympic National Park.
Whatever the force was, it wound up knocking down dozens of fairly large trees in the forest which spawned a rumbling sound that drew concerned from people living nearby.
Although initially presumed to have been a microburst based on the appearance of the downed trees, a local weather watcher named Cliff Mass dug deeper into the story and realized that it was really more of a riddle than that.
It would appear that the force needed to knock down these trees would have to have been considerable and a radar look at the region during that time indicates no such circumstances which could have conjured the mighty wind.
A look at other weather measurements also failed to yield any significant clues, although,intriguingly, a seismic recorder in the area did pick up some rumblings which are thought to have been created by all of the trees hitting the ground.
According to Mass the only weather event which may even be remotely related to the weird tree fall could be a frontal zone due to have hit the area later in the evening and even he is weary of that explanation.
The case has proven to be so perplexing that the fastidious researcher even joked that "perhaps the Sasquatch or alien visitation explanations should be taken seriously!"
With that in mind, it's probably only a matter of time before someone puts forward a meteor-related theory for the mini-Tunguska event.
Source: Seattle Post-Intelligencer / Cliff Mass Weather & Climate Blog