Saturday, January 9, 2010

Biggest ocean wave recorded 1720 feet high

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 27 December, 2009 : - - The biggest wave on record occurred in Lituya Bay on the southern coast of Alaska in 1958. An earthquake measuring 8.3 on the Richter scale hit the area and shook loose an estimated 40 million cubic yards of dirt and glacier from a mountainside at the head of the bay. When the debris hit the water, a massive 1,720-foot wave was created and washed over the headland.

video of largest wave ever surfed with the surfer surviving:

This research started with with my junior high age daughter doing research for a paper. However, I could not at first believe that it was even possible to have a 1700 foot high wave in the ocean. It turns out I was wrong. I have heard of many 100 to 300 foot high waves in the ocean and 40 to 50 foot high waves are common near Antarctica and other places certain times of the year. But I was completely taken aback by even the possiblity of a 1720 foot wave in the ocean anywhere or any time.

Also, the 1964 Alaska quake I remember I was probably 16 at the time and read a true life account of a man in a fishing trawler who survived a several hundred foot wave with his 10 year old son on his fishing boat by going full power over the wave just before it crested. He said the worst part wasn't cresting the wave but dodging all the full grown pine and fir trees as they were ripped out by the tsunami caused wave by the roots and thrown out to sea.

This is the story of the earthquake as I couldn't find the 1964 reader's digest story:

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