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Rattlesnake Mountain explosions set off to prevent mudslides

A King County map shows the site of the explosions set off on Rattlesnake Mountain, south of North Bend. The blasts were meant to prevent more slides. - Courtesy image
A King County map shows the site of the explosions set off on Rattlesnake Mountain, south of North Bend. The blasts were meant to prevent more slides.
— image credit: Courtesy image

No, that booming noise that Valley residents may have heard from the direction of Rattlenake Mountain on Tuesday, Feb. 10, wasn’t the ridge coming down.

That explosion was man made, set off by experts working for the Washington Department of Natural Resources.

Pyrotechnicians from ALRT Corp., in Everson, Wash., performed the work, which was meant to reduce the risk of landslides in the North Bend area. A slide that occurred during the Jan. 7 flood damaged a home and garage on the south side of North Bend.

Explosives experts blew up the remnants of an old logging road leading to the top of Rattlesnake Mountain. Over time, the road has washed out. However, part of the road remains.

“We want to reduce the risk of that small amount of material coming down,” said Kelly Heintz, DNR Natural Areas manager for the region.

Heintz said there was no chance of the explosives work endangering Valley residents.

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