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14 September 2020

The interesting geologic setting of Thomas Cole’s “The Oxbow”

New from The Geo Models blog: “Earlier this year, I became aware of the longer, geographically-specific title and learned that the painting does portray a real location with a particularly interesting geologic context…. Cole’s vantage point on Mt. Holyoke is east-northeast.

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8 April 2020

Virtual field trip: East Arm Morant River, St. Thomas Parish, Jamaica (pics & video)

Exploration a slot canyon with a camera between your teeth. Philip Prince takes us on a virtual tour in Jamaica’s Blue Mountains.

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12 March 2020

The recent fall of the upper Yukon River

While skiing with two friends on the frozen Yukon River a few weeks ago, I visited the eight people who live between the towns of Eagle and Circle, which are 160 river miles apart. The adults in those three households all shared the same observation: The Yukon River’s average level has dropped recently. They all mentioned “river piracy” that happened in an unseen high valley, 500 miles away, as a probable cause.

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10 February 2020

The Pigeon River is perched, which is geologically bad news for it

At Canton, North Carolina, the headwaters of Hominy Creek, a French Broad River tributary, are VERY close to capturing the Pigeon River. In human terms, this is still probably a long way off, but it is most certainly geologically “imminent.”

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13 January 2020

An abandoned river valley and the “true depth” of Appalachia’s deepest river gorge

This post centers around an oddly meandering, dry valley 800 ft above the northwest wall of the gorge. It’s not much to look at in Google Earth imagery alone, but with enhanced maps and some understanding of how river gorges spread through topography, it gives great context for different ways of thinking about gorge development.

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29 August 2019

Celebrating 100,000 students doing field work on the Rio Grande

Since 1996 “100,000 students have walked the halls, tested in the labs, and hiked these trails,” observed Rep. Deb Haaland.

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25 July 2019

Melting ice may change shape of Arctic river deltas

Thawing ice cover and easily erodible permafrost may destabilize Arctic river deltas, according to new research. A new study in the AGU journal Geophysical Research Letters finds sea ice and permafrost both act to stabilize channels on Arctic river deltas.

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3 April 2019

Budding scientists communicate river science to elected officials in New Mexico

Last week, two 6th grade scientists and one 12th grade scientist took a trip to downtown Albuquerque to share the story of ongoing Rio Grande field science with city councilors and county commissioners….and, wow, did these students do a tremendous job!

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26 February 2019

Some examples of the geology of “gaps” and travel on the early American frontier

The topographic features of the Powell Valley Anticline (PVA) played a significant role in the lives of both indigenous and Euro-American peoples on the American frontier in the late 18th century… Here I focus on two subjects inextricably connected to PVA topography: The Wilderness Road and Robert Benge, also known as Chief Benge, Captain Benge, Bob Benge, or simply “The Bench.” Benge and Wilderness Road users had two very opposite goals, leading to numerous clashes and Benge’s ultimate demise in the mountains of the PVA.

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27 July 2018

Alaska’s big river never stops flowing

It’s midsummer, a good time to slip a canoe onto the Yukon River.

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18 July 2018

Way back when, artist believed Alaska was a good deal

“How shall I, in few words, describe this immense stream, one that our men were wont to compare with the Mississippi! At Nulato, which is 600 miles above its mouth, it is, from bank to bank, one mile and a quarter wide …

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6 November 2017

Rio Research Roundup

High school biology students have been working hard studying the wildlife of the Rio Grande. This is one New Mexico student’s report.

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21 July 2017

Mountain glaciers recharge vital aquifers

Small mountain glaciers play a big role in recharging vital aquifers and in keeping rivers flowing during the winter, according to a new study. It suggests that the accelerated melting of mountain glaciers in recent decades may explain why arctic and subarctic rivers have increased their water flow during the winter even without a correlative increase in rain or snowfall.

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31 May 2011

After canals go in, fish diversity goes up… many millenia from now

Facing a growing population and increasing demands for fresh water, India is hoping that an engineering fix will help solve its water-scarcity problems. The country’s National Water Development Agency has begun work on the first of a system of 30 canals that would link 46 rivers, in a process known as inter-basin water transfer.

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