Matanuska River Bank Erosion
Bank erosion along the Matanuska River, a large braided river in southcentral Alaska, has periodically damaged or destroyed properties and structures for decades. Continued rapid population growth in one of the fastest growing areas in Alaska, coupled with the expense of erosion control measures, has elevated the issue for land managers and property owners. Understanding channel processes and variations in bank erodibility is needed to effectively manage areas near such active rivers.
The USGS is cooperating with the Matanuska-Susitna Borough Department of Planning and Land Use to investigate bank erosion along the Matanuska River. This scientific information will help guide users and managers of the river corridor. The present phase of the USGS project consists of a historical analysis of bank erosion and an assessment of bank erodibility for the 75-mile long river. Analysis of orthorectified aerial photography from 1949, 1960, 1990, 2004, and 2006 will provide a measure of the location, amount, and types of banks eroded over various time scales. Field assessment of bank materials, bank height, indicators of surface age, and location of bedrock and erosion control features will be coupled with aerial photo interpretations to determine the location and distribution of various classes of erodible banks along the river.
Matanuska River Real-Time Data
15284000 Matanuska River at Palmer, AK, Real-Time Streamflow Data