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Mudslide Near Homes In Golden Concerns Neighborhood

GOLDEN, Colo. (CBS4)- A section of earth slid down a hillside toward homes in one Golden neighborhood on Friday. The cause is believed to be several days of continuous rain in the area.

Engineers with the City of Golden are monitoring the area near North Table Mountain Park but said they don't see any additional cracking or movement.

"These are steep slopes, they've been getting a lot of rain for several days now, they're getting saturated, it's not surprising that some of them are starting to fail," said soil engineer Ed Ford.

Ford isn't working for the town of Golden but has studied the soil in the area.

The trail above the portion that moved has been closed to prevent additional sliding.

The area will be moved back into place but not until the soil dries. With more rain in the forecast, that timeline is flexible.

golden mudslide
A mudslide in Golden near homes (credit: CBS)

Ford believes the reason for the slide may not be the recent bout of rain.

"A lot of that hasn't dried out yet and this is just adding to it," said Ford. "The water actually moves very slowly through the soil depending on how much clay. It may move more slowly than others but it could take several years to move 100 feet."

Because officials don't believe the homes are in danger those residents have been allowed to stay.

"You want to look for areas where water can accumulate and start running into the slope above you. That may have been what happened here. You can see the trail on the hillside may collect some water at the top of that and that may have contributed to the saturation in the area that failed," said Ford.

Ford said the patterns are puzzling, "We've had wet summers before, these hills haven't failed but hills fail at different times so it's hard to predict."

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