Bedrock Rivers

K. X. Whipple, Roman Alexander Dibiase, B. T. Crosby

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

97 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Bedrock rivers play a critical role in landscape evolution - cutting canyons, creating relief, and driving much of landscape response to changes in climate and tectonics. The bed and banks of bedrock rivers are sporadically rocky but are commonly covered by a thin and fairly continuous layer of alluvium, though bedrock is everywhere close to the surface. Flow hydraulics and channel morphology in bedrock rivers have much in common with coarse-bed alluvial rivers. Interestingly, the width of bedrock channels is similar to alluvial rivers with the same discharge and follows the same scaling with drainage area, suggesting similar controls on channel width despite the difference in substrate strength. Erosion of bedrock in rivers is accomplished by a suite of interacting processes, including abrasion, plucking, cavitation, debris-flow scour, and weathering, and is strongly modulated by river sediment load. Recent models of river incision into bedrock incorporate the dual role of the sediment load as both tools and cover and highlight the importance of discharge variability in the erosion process. Data relating channel steepness, landscape relief, and erosion rate are critical for testing and refining these river incision models, and these increasingly well-established relationships now provide effective tools for diagnosing both spatial and temporal influences of climate and tectonics on landscape evolution. Furthermore, the style and distribution of knickpoints in transient landscapes encodes additional information about climatic and tectonic histories and allows for further discrimination among river incision models that produce similar steady-state forms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationTreatise on Geomorphology
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Pages550-573
Number of pages24
Volume9
ISBN (Print)9780080885223
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2013

Fingerprint

bedrock
river
landscape evolution
tectonics
relief
erosion
channel morphology
cavitation
climate
abrasion
scour
erosion rate
debris flow
fluvial deposit
alluvial deposit
canyon
weathering
drainage
hydraulics
substrate

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Cite this

Whipple, K. X., Dibiase, R. A., & Crosby, B. T. (2013). Bedrock Rivers. In Treatise on Geomorphology (Vol. 9, pp. 550-573). Elsevier Inc.. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-374739-6.00254-2
Whipple, K. X. ; Dibiase, Roman Alexander ; Crosby, B. T. / Bedrock Rivers. Treatise on Geomorphology. Vol. 9 Elsevier Inc., 2013. pp. 550-573
@inbook{6cb96bfcdea2442390d1ae137b0b2bf2,
title = "Bedrock Rivers",
abstract = "Bedrock rivers play a critical role in landscape evolution - cutting canyons, creating relief, and driving much of landscape response to changes in climate and tectonics. The bed and banks of bedrock rivers are sporadically rocky but are commonly covered by a thin and fairly continuous layer of alluvium, though bedrock is everywhere close to the surface. Flow hydraulics and channel morphology in bedrock rivers have much in common with coarse-bed alluvial rivers. Interestingly, the width of bedrock channels is similar to alluvial rivers with the same discharge and follows the same scaling with drainage area, suggesting similar controls on channel width despite the difference in substrate strength. Erosion of bedrock in rivers is accomplished by a suite of interacting processes, including abrasion, plucking, cavitation, debris-flow scour, and weathering, and is strongly modulated by river sediment load. Recent models of river incision into bedrock incorporate the dual role of the sediment load as both tools and cover and highlight the importance of discharge variability in the erosion process. Data relating channel steepness, landscape relief, and erosion rate are critical for testing and refining these river incision models, and these increasingly well-established relationships now provide effective tools for diagnosing both spatial and temporal influences of climate and tectonics on landscape evolution. Furthermore, the style and distribution of knickpoints in transient landscapes encodes additional information about climatic and tectonic histories and allows for further discrimination among river incision models that produce similar steady-state forms.",
author = "Whipple, {K. X.} and Dibiase, {Roman Alexander} and Crosby, {B. T.}",
year = "2013",
month = "3",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/B978-0-12-374739-6.00254-2",
language = "English (US)",
isbn = "9780080885223",
volume = "9",
pages = "550--573",
booktitle = "Treatise on Geomorphology",
publisher = "Elsevier Inc.",
address = "United States",

}

Whipple, KX, Dibiase, RA & Crosby, BT 2013, Bedrock Rivers. in Treatise on Geomorphology. vol. 9, Elsevier Inc., pp. 550-573. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-374739-6.00254-2

Bedrock Rivers. / Whipple, K. X.; Dibiase, Roman Alexander; Crosby, B. T.

Treatise on Geomorphology. Vol. 9 Elsevier Inc., 2013. p. 550-573.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

TY - CHAP

T1 - Bedrock Rivers

AU - Whipple, K. X.

AU - Dibiase, Roman Alexander

AU - Crosby, B. T.

PY - 2013/3/1

Y1 - 2013/3/1

N2 - Bedrock rivers play a critical role in landscape evolution - cutting canyons, creating relief, and driving much of landscape response to changes in climate and tectonics. The bed and banks of bedrock rivers are sporadically rocky but are commonly covered by a thin and fairly continuous layer of alluvium, though bedrock is everywhere close to the surface. Flow hydraulics and channel morphology in bedrock rivers have much in common with coarse-bed alluvial rivers. Interestingly, the width of bedrock channels is similar to alluvial rivers with the same discharge and follows the same scaling with drainage area, suggesting similar controls on channel width despite the difference in substrate strength. Erosion of bedrock in rivers is accomplished by a suite of interacting processes, including abrasion, plucking, cavitation, debris-flow scour, and weathering, and is strongly modulated by river sediment load. Recent models of river incision into bedrock incorporate the dual role of the sediment load as both tools and cover and highlight the importance of discharge variability in the erosion process. Data relating channel steepness, landscape relief, and erosion rate are critical for testing and refining these river incision models, and these increasingly well-established relationships now provide effective tools for diagnosing both spatial and temporal influences of climate and tectonics on landscape evolution. Furthermore, the style and distribution of knickpoints in transient landscapes encodes additional information about climatic and tectonic histories and allows for further discrimination among river incision models that produce similar steady-state forms.

AB - Bedrock rivers play a critical role in landscape evolution - cutting canyons, creating relief, and driving much of landscape response to changes in climate and tectonics. The bed and banks of bedrock rivers are sporadically rocky but are commonly covered by a thin and fairly continuous layer of alluvium, though bedrock is everywhere close to the surface. Flow hydraulics and channel morphology in bedrock rivers have much in common with coarse-bed alluvial rivers. Interestingly, the width of bedrock channels is similar to alluvial rivers with the same discharge and follows the same scaling with drainage area, suggesting similar controls on channel width despite the difference in substrate strength. Erosion of bedrock in rivers is accomplished by a suite of interacting processes, including abrasion, plucking, cavitation, debris-flow scour, and weathering, and is strongly modulated by river sediment load. Recent models of river incision into bedrock incorporate the dual role of the sediment load as both tools and cover and highlight the importance of discharge variability in the erosion process. Data relating channel steepness, landscape relief, and erosion rate are critical for testing and refining these river incision models, and these increasingly well-established relationships now provide effective tools for diagnosing both spatial and temporal influences of climate and tectonics on landscape evolution. Furthermore, the style and distribution of knickpoints in transient landscapes encodes additional information about climatic and tectonic histories and allows for further discrimination among river incision models that produce similar steady-state forms.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84877791828&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84877791828&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/B978-0-12-374739-6.00254-2

DO - 10.1016/B978-0-12-374739-6.00254-2

M3 - Chapter

AN - SCOPUS:84877791828

SN - 9780080885223

VL - 9

SP - 550

EP - 573

BT - Treatise on Geomorphology

PB - Elsevier Inc.

ER -

Whipple KX, Dibiase RA, Crosby BT. Bedrock Rivers. In Treatise on Geomorphology. Vol. 9. Elsevier Inc. 2013. p. 550-573 https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-374739-6.00254-2