Observations from the Qulica Area

La Bajada
This day was spent driving the coast road south of Camana to the port of Quilca. The road continues south along the coast after the Pan Am highway turns inland. It runs along the tops of the cliffs and through several canyons before dropping down to the coast and running along the back almost all the way to Quilca. The place where the road comes down to the coast is known as La Bajada. The inundation line was obvious, debris was scattered all the way back to the road, over 150 m from shore. The entire beach was covered with debris. This beach is very wide, flat and hard packed. Lower right photo above

Quilca Town
In the port town of Quilca the tsunami had quite an interesting effect. There were 4 distinct surges. The first withdrew to the base of the fish loading dock. When this first withdrawl returned it surged over the top of the fish loading dock. The second withdrawal then went out and withdrew far enough to expose the sea floor several meters in front of the loading dock. The return of the 2nd surge came up over the fish dock to a point just higher than the 1st surge. The third withdrawal went out almost to the mouth of the bay, a distance of probably 100-m and a depth of 6 ­ 8 m (reported by locals). When this surge returned it covered the pier (a minimum of 2.4 m above SWL at survey time) reportedly surged over a concrete room at the edge of the dock (nearly 4 m) and up the main street to an elevation of nearly 4 m.

After the trip to Quilca, we returned to Camana, regrouped and drove the Pan American down to the town of Mollendo and the port of Matarani. It was a long drive, up the mountains from Camana, finally out of the coastal fog and into the bright sun and the Peruvian desert. We passed the turnoff to Arequipa and continued on down the windy mountain road, back into the coastal fog to Mollendo. Arrived around 8 p.m.

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