A landslide is distinguished from mudslides, avalanches, and other forms of mass wasting by the relative dryness of the soil or rock in it. Earthquake, freeze-thaw weathering, and the domino effect of falling debris are among the perturbations that can trigger the spontaneous downward movement of a landslide.
The darkened road turned and twisted, and I was obliged to hold the team to a walking pace. The track was narrow and sometimes sloped abruptly down to the edge of the water, then ascended a ways to cross above an overhanging cliff, until, forced by a wall of huge boulders from an ancient landslide, it switch-backed towards the river and descended to the rushing waters again. Day or night, this was a mighty dangerous place.
— Russell Banks, Cloudsplitter