The 1849 Gazetteer of New Hampshire called them - "slips, that were made by an extraordinary discharge of water from the clouds. They commence near the summit of the mountain and proceed to its base, forcing a passage through all obstructions." Today we call them landslides.
In Franconia Notch, slides have been recorded since 1826 when a large slide at the south end of the lake closed the wagon road for two months. Other "slips" were reported in 1850 and 1883.
In this century, the Notch has been the scene of eight major slides, six of which crossed the highway. In October of 1938, the highway, east of this view point, was buried by 15 feet of earth, trees and rock. in June of 1946, two slides came down within twenty minutes of each other, one at the north end of this lake, the other at the south end. The southern slide covered the highway to a depth of 15 feet and was estimated to contain 10,000 cubic yards of debris.
The largest slide in modern times occurred on October 24, 1959. Its slide track is to be seen across the Notch from this point. 200 feet of highway was covered to a depth of 27 feet, and required 3 ½ days of work, around the clock, to reopen the road.
No human deaths have ever been recorded in connection with the slides in Franconia Notch.