Hurricanes Go Underground Too?

hurricane-matthew-10-8-2016You know you are a nerd when you have a seismometer site open on your computer all the time. On Saturday morning (10/8/2016) I discovered this while sipping coffee. Whaaaaat? (Click to enlarge.)

FYI: This is an image on a “normal day…”

normal-day-2016-10-12-at-6-40-04-amI sent the image to Jeff Fox at OhioSeis…Here is his very prompt reply…

“Microseisms from the hurricane [Matthew]. As we move into winter, you will see the background noise levels increase as north Atlantic storm waves batter the east coast. They are in a certain frequency band that is well known to seismologists. The ocean shore wave energy propagates across the entire N American continent. Pretty cool stuff.”

Cool stuff indeed, Jeff

Here is what LCHO picked up from Hurricane Matthew…

hurricane-matthew-lcho_hhz_oh_-2016101100 The “noise” at the top is night traffic and morning traffic is at the bottom. In the middle you clearly see the “microseism” waves created by the hurricane pounding the shores ~ 700 miles (0ver 1000km) away.

Just when I thought I had heard everything about the power of these storms….Go back to the “Normal Day”image , click to enlarge, and look close…See the tiny ripples?…The giant earth “bell” is still ringing today (10/12/2016) from the pounding……wow….

These waves are super small and we would not feel them. But I wonder about a horse….Any horse people notice odd behavior with their “gentle giants” on Saturday?



Finding Fossils

img_9427FIRST: I have no formal training in paleontology or geology…Feel free to send me comments and/or corrections.

SECOND: A Special thanks to…Lisa Nicely at The Crescent-News  for her article, “Can you dig it?” and LaFarge  for their contribution by providing access to fossils at their Fossil Garden site.

MY STORY: I have just returned from my first fossil hunt and there WILL be many more…

WHAT: A Fossil Garden? Yep, LaFarge Quarry has fenced off a section of land where they dump sedimentary rock for fossil hunters. It is later replaced with “fresh” rock for those that want to continue searching. It’s free! You simply search and take the fossils you find. They only want you to sign a waver to keep everything legal and naturally, you are expected to behave.

WHERE: The corner of County Road 180 and 87 about 7 miles northwest of Paulding, Ohio.

Sunrise at the Paulding County Community Fossil Garden



Not kidding, this was the FIRST rock I picked up and whacked with a hammer! Guess = Brachiopod = Lampshell (Looks like clam shells.)

img_9413LaFarge dumps the rock and pushes it out with a bulldozer. Each “path” looks like a road for a tank demonstration…(See my car way back there?)

You walk around over the rocks and keep your eyes open. Which is tricky! The rocks are VERY hard to walk over. I discovered it was easier to carefully watch my steps, stop, then look around. (This is NOT like hunting for arrow heads!)


See two things in this large rock?    Look close…
img_9422Another Brachiopod(Lampshell)

img_9425I first thought this was a “Geode” Um, no….It’s a recrystallized fossil…(I did some searching online)….

recrystallized-fossil The complex details are in the link. The short version is, the hollow body of the dead fills with minerals which then crystallize. So go back and look at mine. I see a brachiopod in cross section with crystals for guts.

img_9418Can’t be bones…wrong time period….”plant” maybe?

What time period? The Devonian ~ 400 Million years ago! (The Crescent-News)

Tools for your “walk” back in time….WAY BACK!

  1. GOOD hiking shoes.
  2. Hammer and eye protection.
  3. Knee pads(really wish that I remembered mine.)
  4. Bucket…pretty soon you will have an arm full of big rocks.
  5. Camera…some fossils are in huge rocks. I took pics and left them for others to see.
  6. GLOVES!!!! (Yes, I WAS wearing them…OUCH!)img_9428I have lots of samples and photos, but they all look the same after a while…

img_9426The “big” find for today…

A special thanks goes to the person who last used the porta potty…

Next to the seat, you left this….

img_9432I freaked out and laughed thinking this was reptile skin!

Up close….

img_9437WOW! RIGHT?


rhombopora-1Close up…


The Genus name of my “reptile skin” is Rhombopora in the Phylum Bryozoa….

“Bryozoans are some of the most abundant fossils in the world. They are also widespread today,…. Bryozoans are small animals (just large enough to be seen with the naked eye) that live exclusively in colonies. ”

In English….It’s “coral”!

Don’t care! It’s the best find and story of the day!





Salton Sea Shaker

California is all too familiar with earthquakes. But even they have noticed a recent change…

There has been a drastic increase of quakes in the Salton Sea…WHERE?screen-shot-2016-10-03-at-10-35-02-am

(Click to enlarge USGS Images)


These are small earthquakes in Southern California over the past week. “Normal” for them..

Look at the little lake, east of San Diego..


OH, MY…All in the past week.

There are LOTS of little faults in this area and some of them are slipping…

You know the big fault that runs diagonal in this image, the San Andreas…(Thin red line above dots.)

The sound bite the media is using is the, “domino effect”…

You can read more here…

Salton Sea Temblor Swarm Prompts State Advisory On Risk Of Major Quake

or here…

“The earth is always moving, while we can only ride along.”







Standing on the Wire…

In our last episode, Mike was hiking around Farnsworth Metropark and noticed this…


It took me a few minutes to figure out what was going on.




Yep, this is one of those Horizontal Directional Drills (HDD). Whaaaaaat?

I kept walking and taking pics…

Look close. I did not see it on the first pass. See the wire?

I turned around…


Where does that wire go?

Went back to the parking lot…


See them? Bet you don’t… I move in closer…


Two cement bricks, painted orange, in very shallow water. Still closer…


See it? The wire continues across the river….IMG_9304

The wire crosses the river to an orange stake on the other bank. (Above and left of seagull…)


Trust me, it’s there.(Click on Image to enlarge)

So this HDD is drilling a line under the Maumee River….It’s the Nexus gas line project. I never thought about the fact that it needs to cross the river. WOW….How does THAT work?

Check out the video…

Nexus Project Map and Q&A

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 7.56.40 AM

You can see this project while driving on the Ohio Turnpike near Sandusky.

The other side of this issue.. Fresh Water Accountability Project

No mention of the BG fault being a concern. If you look at my last post, Finding Fault with the Neighbors, you will see that a risk of a major quake is low for NW Ohio and slightly higher in Eastern Ohio. If there was a major earthquake, the gas line problem would just be one item on a long list of the destruction caused.

The earth is moving in all directions, all the time. We are just along for the ride.

And finally…. Where am I on this one issue, out of so many today?…..I’m “Standing on the Wire.”



Finding Fault with the Neighbors

First: A special thanks goes out to James B. Short of Montpelier, Ohio for introducing me to our own local geologic fault. ALSO Jeff Fox (Ohio Seismic Network) for all his guidance and bringing LCHO back from the dead!

Now a map…Farnsworth Metro Park, south of Waterville, OH

Screen Shot 2016-08-22 at 3.15.41 PM

Like me, you may have driven right past it many times and never saw the sign…


Bowling Green Fault


100 miles Long? Where does it run?

Screen Shot 2016-08-23 at 7.04.28 AM

(Earthquakes of Ohio)

See it? Now let’s try putting a road map over it….

Screen Shot 2016-08-23 at 7.07.48 AM

Yes, this is crude. Get over it….Find I-75(Red) between Bowling Green and Findlay. The BG fault runs south from Michigan, west of I-475 and I-75 then crosses south of Findlay.

Also notice there is a fault that follows the Maumee River to Lake Erie.

So what kind of fault is it? According to my connections at Ohio Seismic Network,  ” Those faults are either dormant or dead. It’s hard to determine the stresses on the fault unless they slide, and it’s been a long time since that has happened…as far as we know!”

Long time indeed….

Screen Shot 2016-08-23 at 7.23.25 AM

Screen Shot 2016-08-23 at 7.25.06 AM

(Ohio Seismic Network)

Note: The green star in Williams County (far NE) is Jim Short’s Station NTLK. Wood County has station BGSO (Bowling Green University)…LCHO is between these two stations and will be online….”soon”.

The “big one” in Ohio was the 1937 Anna Quake M5.4 (East-Central Ohio)

Those little ones (19 by my count) in the Maumee and BG fault area were recorded between 1937 and 2011. The magnitude range was from 2(few will notice) to 4(felt by most people, some dishes/pictures fall, cracked plaster.) ((Ohio Seismic Network)

So…. There is no such thing as “solid rock”. It can be very firm, but never stationary. The only thing constant, it change.

Now here is my hike around my first real fault.


Past the historic marker down the steep path towards the river.


Noted…but odd….it’s not a trail but it’s a trail?


Down the “trail/not trail” looking back at historic marker…


Picture on marker. Solid yellow lines were at same level 400 million years ago. Broken line is BG fault.


My pic…

BG Fault Stata 8-22-2016 mzh

My image with red dots for same level and broken red is the fault.


Close up on left.


Close up on right…


“My fault”, in the middle with knife for size.

I know it is not very easy to see this. I was there and am still confused…The point is the rock is layered(normal) but slanted and twisted(not normal).

My plan is to return when the the vegetation is gone this fall, take better pics, then stand in the middle and wait for the BIG ONE. 😉


Toto Too?

Joseph just captured this amazing pic from the front of his home…Water Spout off North Point









I, for one, have never had the pleasure of sighting a waterspout. Nor, thankfully, have I been in the path of it’s nasty BIG brother!

Google ON!….GAAAAAA!……I have been trying to find a simple explanation, WITHOUT ads and pop-ups… HA! Found one….FINALLY! Our tax dollars at work…

waterspout for full story…

In short…for these to form you need large cumulus clouds that hold lots of moisture. A column of air forms due to the slight temperature differences in one area of the water surface. Warmer air rises over that area and cool air moves in over the water. That air is then warmed and rises. (NO SPOUT YET). The warming, rising, filling in, warming, rising, filling in continues…..But just like water moving down a drain, the column of air begins to rotate slowly. The process continues and the confused boater will see nothing but a strange dark area in the water. The rotation is making ripples in one spot while it picks up speed. The speed of rotation gets to the point that the pressure inside the column is lower than the outside. This pressure drop usually starts up at the cloud….PLUS this column is loaded with water vapor. Everyone knows when you drop the pressure (or cool) air that is full of water vapor you get…say it with me….FOG!  Only this fog is rotating fast as it falls and spins from the cloud above.

QUESTION: YOU are the one in the boat, watching this unfold. What should you do?

A)  PANIC, jump out of the boat and swim to shore.

B) Take the boat to the middle of the dark spot and have your phone ready for a great selfie.

C) Move your boat away from the dark spot/waterspout.

I am hoping you picked “C”. Many waterspouts are just “fair weather waterspouts” that move very slowly, if at all, and only last a short time. But the winds are surprising high.

Larger “storm waterspouts” are the wet versions of the nasty cousin, the tornado. Both of which can’t hold a candle to the infamous firestorm.

Water spout 2

Water Spouts by Britiannica

Imagine seeing THIS from your yard…


Fire Storm (

See what is happening? Super hot air rising…”cooler air” moving in from the right and left side. HOT column of rising gas in the center begins to rotate….and… Toto pees in his basket!

Let’s slow down and cool Toto off a little…..

Many of these have passed across the fields on a hot day…


Dust Devil from ABC News (with video)

Similar tune, different lyrics. These dust devils form on hot days and usually clear skies. Hot air will rise in a certain area. A hot parking lot, or field of dirt, surround by cooler grass. Rising column of warm air, cooler air rushes in, it rises forming a larger column…..Column of air rotates, stirring up dust and dog, and up they go! (Turkey vultures will find these rising air masses and glide all afternoon with very little effort.) Add a light breeze and the whole thing will move across the land until something breaks up the wind pattern. Once, I actually stood in the middle of a little dust devil, which was pretty “cool”.

Time for bed, Toto…


Noisy Neighbor

I had the privilege of attending an Ohio Seismic Workshop and wanted to share some discoveries.

First: TWO quakes are recorded in each image below. They were so close together in distance and time, the results overlap and blend.

1st Quake = M7.2 near New Caledonia (East of Australia) on 8/12/2016 at 1:26:35 UTC (21:26:35 EDT)

2nd Quake = M6.1 South of Fiji Islands at 3:29:27 UTC (23:29:27 EDT), just two hours later!

Distance between the two? ~840Miles (1,352 km)

Surface Distance to LCHO? ~8,166 miles (13,142km) (Remember shock waves go deep and take short cuts.)

Below is BGSO (at BGSU), closest neighbor to LCHO. Notice you see “calm” before and after the waves caused by the quakes. BGSO is an older station and it not as sensitive. Can’t see the two quakes? Either can I! Image throwing two rocks in a quiet pond and watching the resulting waves reach the shore. The waves will blend and continue for a long time (Well over 2 HOURS! A huge ringing bell!) (Click on Image to Enlarge)

BGSO New Caledonia AND Fiji 2016-08-12 at 8.53.46 AM

Notice the first ripples of a quake start around 21:46 UTC or 20 minutes later ! The shock waves travel 8,166 SURFACE miles, (less distance moving BELOW the surface) in only 20 MINUTES!

Below is new “sister” station KLSO in Champaigne County, Ohio (West of Columbus)

You notice far sharper tracings and little disturbances of unknown origin. This indicates the new sister station is far more sensitive than the earlier models.

KLSO New Caledonia AND Fiji.2016081200

AND FINALLY…below is the new, but VERY NOISY “brother” station LCHO.

You see the blended quakes but also notice all the TRAFFIC NOISE?

It’s the traffic noise that distorts the recordings. This creates a problem for seismologists that use the fine details of the waves to determine info about each quake and the nature of the rock formations below. Imagine trying to listen to a concert surrounded by loud barking dogs.

LCHO New Caledonia AND Fiji.2016081200

The experts are discussing ways to filter out the noise. My vote is to let it be, so we get the big picture.

Next up, I was told there is a fault line very close to our station…Stay tuned for, “Finding Fault with the Neighbors!