• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

River Landscapes and Processes

Extracts from this document...


River Landscapes and Processes Some important words and definitions: 1. Fluvial Landscape - a landscape created by rivers and their tributaries. 2. Tributary - a small river or stream which joins to a larger one. 3. River or drainage basin - an area drained by a single river together with all of its tributaries. 4. Confluence - where 2 or more streams, rivers or tributaries join together. 5. Watershed - The boundary line between different river/drainage basins. (Sometimes these are referred to as Catchment areas) 6. Source - The starting point of a river or stream. (watercourse) - This maybe a spring or just an area of boggy/marshy land. ...read more.


There are 4 main processes by which a river can cause erosion (wearing away) and 4 processes by which a river can transport (move) material. * Processes of erosion 1. Attrition - breaking up of material into smaller and smaller particles. 2. Corrosion - fire material rubs (like sandpaper) and gradually wears away the channel sides. 3. Corrosion - dilute acids in water help break down and dissolve particles. 4. Hydraulic Action - the sheer force of flowing water "hitting" the banks causes them to be worn away and collapse. * Processes of transportation 1. Traction - the movement of large rocks and boulders along the channel - usually in times of flood. ...read more.


This is more usual in mountainous areas nearer to the source of the river. Here the river forms a series of characteristic landforms which include "V" - shaped valley with interlocking spurs as well as waterfalls and rapids. The Formation of a Cap Rock Waterfall How do meanders and oxbow lakes form? As rivers get nearer to their mouths they flow in increasingly wide gentle sided valleys (with a saucer shape cross-section.) The channel increases in width and depth and the natural physical process causes it to 2meander" (from the River Meander in N. America). As a river goes round a bend most of the water is pushed to the outside of the bend and erosion takes place. The opposite happens on the inside of the bend - where deposition takes place Cross Section of a river bend Diagrams showing the formation of meanders and ox-bow lakes ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Hydrology & Fluvial Geomorphology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Hydrology & Fluvial Geomorphology essays

  1. To what extent are fluvio-glacial deposits and landforms distinctive?

    pieces of rock off as the glacier moves downhill, creating the jagged surface. Some of the smallest impacts of glacial erosion can be seen in the form of striations and p-form features. These are formed on a very local scale, but can still alter the appearance of the landscape significantly.

  2. Hydrology and Fluvial geomorphology. (Q&A)

    The discharge is the water in the river channel that has reached there by surface runoff (overland flow), through the soil profile (throughflow) and groundwater (baseflow). The period of time between the maximum peak of precipitation and the peak or maximum discharge from the river is known as the lag time.

  1. River channel processes.

    A braided channel is the result of extremely erratic river regime. This means the discharge varies greatly over time. When discharge is high then the river is able to hold much more load but when low this material will get deposited and thus the braided channel.

  2. The Afon Glaslyn, SnowdoniaCase Study of fluvial landforms and processes

    As the river is laterally eroding it means that meanders are formed. As the river overflows onto land it spreads and due to the increase in friction in deposits sediment (silt) as the silt builds up a flat floodplain is created-then braiding occurs.

  1. The river Gwaun: Investigating how the course of the river changes from the source ...

    and also the way that humans have edited the course of the river for their own benefits e.g. widening the river near residential/urban areas to prevent floods at Site 4. This proves my hypothesis correct. Bed Load Size Hypothesis I predict that the bed load size will decrease from Gellifawr to Lower Fishguard.

  2. Does the river Alyn follow Bradshaw's model?

    As the depth increased the discharge increased. Again this was due to the fact that as the depth increased there was a greater volume of water and so more water could pass through at that point. Because the river is wider than it is deep changes in depth as opposed

  1. Do the Characteristics of a river change downstream?

    To determine the exact shape of a stone or piece of brick a pebble roundness chart was used. Diagram 2a Refer to diagram 2b for more information. Logic Using a pebble roundness chart to determine to shape of each object meant that the shaping of the rocks was not done on guesswork but fact.

  2. "Glaciated Uplands are landscapes of erosion: glaciated lowlands are landscapes of deposition" examine the ...

    This was formed by a smaller glacier which flowed into the main valley glacier which formed Glen Chalmadale. The smaller glacier in Glen Eason had less erosive energy so the valley has been left 'hanging' higher up than the main valley.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work