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Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by blufford, Jul 13, 2005.
What is quick sand and how deep is it?
So called "quicksand" is nothing more that soil/sand saturated with water. Our specific gravity is such that we will float on this "soup" if we don't fuss around and get ourselves in deeper. It's seldom more than a few feet deep.
I watched one of those myth buster tv shows on the discovery channel; they mixed up some quick sand in this huge 10 ft deep bowl thing.
They mixed it up thin, they mixed it up thick, they heated it, they cooled it, they left it in between.They jumped in during all these tests, they swam, they splashed around, and need I say they Jumped in.
They didnt sink, and that was there point, they where trying to create the "hollywood" stuff, that people in the movies are always drowning in, Well it didnt happen, no matter what they tried, and they tried different sands as well.
The point: : your not likely to drown in quick sand
I always thought it was sand and water, deepness depended on how dramatic the director or writer was, and how big an animal they where trying to drown.
I Have A 86 Year Old Native American Friend Who Claims That She Can Smell Quicksand A Mile Away And That Is Smells Like Sulphur.
I Took Her To A Dig Site Of An Archaeology Club I Belong To. It Is Located On The Lake Wales Ridge (florida). As We Were Leaving She Related This Info. There Are Too Many Different Land Owners Along There To Get Involved With A Search, Which Would Have To Be On Foot And At Her Age, We Did Not Pursue It.
I sank in quicksand once. It was at Jones Beach on Long Island, New York. My husband and I were walking along the beach, all romantic like , when all of a sudden I sunk right up to my thighs in some quicksand. It was after alot of rain and high tide. I was laughing so hard that I couldn't get myself out. :help: My husband had to drag me to safety, My Hero! :bow: :cowboy: .
What has been generally stated before is true.
Quicksand involves a big fancy word called THIXOTROIC .
When related to soils, it means the soil can act as both a liquid or a solid or both. You do not have to have sands present in soils to make them Thixotroic. In general it usually is tied to the amount of water in the soil but does not have to be, that is only one mechanism that can change how the soils behave. It all has to do with the soil properties expressed as a viscosity or how it acts in shear. That is when two layers are in movement. Under one condition it might act as a solid, under others as a liquid.
In a thixotroic fluid, the viscosity increases wildly with increases in shear. Thus, if you try to do something fast, it resists a whole lot, compared to doing it slow.
The mud slides in California are because the soil type is Thixotroic in nature and change their behavior when saturated with water. The make up of the soils can make them Thixotroic. Things like gypsum, sulfites and a number of other compounds. Places like ash ponds at power plants can be deadly. They appear as solid ground and you can walk on certain areas, other areas are quicksand in nature and they may be quite deep. People have died from trying to walk on them. Another really nasty stuff is the waste from some scrubbers at power plants. It is calcium sulfite (CaSO3) and is extremely Thixotroic, acts more like peanut butter and never becomes stable even if mixed with other soils. Doing so can make the soil deadly to anything that tries to walk on it. They dispose of the stuff in some places by putting it behind something like a dam.
The one that would be extremely dangerous; if you have a soil that is Thixotroic in nature and somehow it has either large amounts of gases dissolved or gases flowing through it, the density can be reduced to a point where you would not float if you got into a pool of it. Same for even water, if it can have lots of air bubbles, gases or whatever present a ship will sink. Drilling rigs sink if a gas well blows out under them at sea.
BTW: A number of soils that act like quicksand might have sulfur gases associated with them. You find such soils around swamps and volcanos frequently.
Cosmic, call it thixotropic and we might have a deal. Paint is a good example of a thixotropic material. It is sticky and viscous on your brush, but under pressure, it loses viscosity and smears out thin and even. Then it becomes sticky again and stays on the wall.
The only time I felt like I was in trouble was when trapping muskrats at the upper end of a small lake. Silt and organic matter from the creek coming in were pretty deep there and when I waded thru it, I suddenly sunk up over my waders and to my chest. I managed to grab some willows and pull myself and my boots out, but I didn't feel like going that route again.
One thing they found on that Mythbusters episode was that even if they did manage to make their big tank of sand and water act like quicksand, they were extremely bouyant in it, and floated about waist deep at the most.
I am currently saving all the P's I can get. Have a lot of extra Q's laying around. Minding both P's and Q's and then putting them up for sale is both fun and profitable. :happy:
Excuse me, got to go take a P somewhere. Maybe get another beer. :walk: Hope I don't hit any Thixotriocal patches on the way. :stars:
Thanks for all the answers. I can still see the outlaws in the older westerns with their hand sticking out as their head goes underneath the bottomless quicksand. Will somebody please throw them a rope or maybe a vine. Oh yea! I think Tarzan may have had some quicksand problems too. I would hate to step in that chemically made stuff....YUK!
Went horseback riding & camping with some friends in Canyon de Chelly on the Navajo Indian Reservation, N.E. Arizona. We had a horse sink its rear legs and butt in quicksand. Had to rope the horse & pull it out. Needless to say, the rider wasn't too happy. Lots of quicksand up there. Magnificant country & Indian ruins by the way.
We were told not to struggle. try to float & have someone pull you out, or if alone kinda swim, inch your way to the side & out.
I know of a sandy creek where during wet weather a spring would bubble up in one area creating what we always called quicksand. It looks fairly solid but unlike the other sand in the creek when you stepped in it there was really nothing there. A very odd feeling. You could feel the sand around you but you also felt the water flowing upwards. I could see how it could really frighten someone. No more dangerous than water though. In fact because of the upward flow of water you could float quite easily. The first time you fell in the hole it was pretty jolting however.
I've been stuck in river mud that I was wondering if I would ever get out of. The more you struggled the worse you got stuck. I lost more than one pair of shoes like that as a kid. Not that you would want them back. That mud was pretty foul smelling stuff from all of the rotting organic matter.
I just came back from that area. N.M, Az, & Utah are beautiful & I love the native American sites!!