Watch huge chunk of the Sierra Nevada fly into the air

The Sierra Nevada is currently enduring a period of active exfoliation, as seen in this viral video
The Sierra Nevada is currently enduring a period of active exfoliation, as seen in this viral video.

When huge chunks of granite start exploding under your feet, you're either in the wrong place at the wrong time … or you press the record button.

This lucky videographer captured huge chunks of rock bursting into the air at Twain Harte rock in California, a section of the Sierra Nevadas currently enduring a period of active "exfoliation."

Rock formations are smoothed out into a dome shape through the process, which is a form of pressure release wherein the top layer of rock actually cracks off from the lower layers, eventually eroding away in the wind and rain. This usually takes place on a geologic time scale (read: a long, long time) so it's extremely rare to witness in person.

The most famous exfoliation-made landmark? Half Dome in Yosemite National Park, California, a large-scale example of rock being shaped by exfoliation, weathering, and glacial scour.

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