Rincon Mountain megaslide: La Conchita, Ventura County, California

Larry D. Gurrola, Duane E. DeVecchio, Edward A. Keller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


The 1995 and 2005 landslides in the 200-m high sea cliff above the community of La Conchita, California, are known to be part of a reactivated Holocene prehistoric landslide. We propose that the prehistoric Holocene slide is part of a much larger, several hundred million cubic meter late Pleistocene slide complex composed of upper slumps and lower flows, informally termed as the Rincon Mountain megaslide. An approximate age of 30 ka for the Rincon Mountain landslide is derived based on a 25-m high fault scarp produced in earthflow deposits that overlie the megaslide deposits and a known rate of faulting (~ 0.8 m/ky). Geomorphic evidence for the megaslide includes a prominent 100-m high amphitheater-shaped head scarp, back-tilted landslide benches, hummocky topography, and numerous smaller landslides and earthflow deposits. Geologic evidence includes deposits composed of slide breccia with fragments of the late Pleistocene (45 ka) emergent marine platform and terrace deposits displaced several tens of meters. Isolated parts of the Rincon Mountain landslide are active in the La Conchita area, but no evidence exists that the entire slide mass is moving as a unit. Landslides from the 200-m high slope behind La Conchita will reoccur and future development on the proposed Rincon Mountain slide should be very carefully evaluated to avoid reducing slope stability and reactivation of the megaslide.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)311-318
Number of pages8
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 15 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • La Conchita
  • Landslide hazard
  • Megaslide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth-Surface Processes


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