Braided rivers entering coastal water

This ShoreZone image shows braided streams of the Grewingk Glacier River. Retreating glaciers carry large volumes of sediment, producing braided streams with multiple channels. 

Braided river channels are variable and dynamic. Storm-driven waves erode them. Surging and retreating glaciers then deposit sediments, building them up. During periods of relative stability, opportunistic animals such as the blue mussel (Mytilus trossulus) and marine algae such as the rockweed (Fucus distichus) may colonize the beach face, creating the beautiful colored patterns seen here.

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Last modified
27 August 2015 - 1:00pm