Blanco River, Colorado, 1987, 1993

Assessed, designed, and implemented 2.7 mi of stream restoration that converted a braided channel system to a single-thread, meandering stream to regain the physical and ecological functions of the river system. The floodplain was rebuilt to connect to the channel.

Aerial image from Google Earth in 2013 showing the retention of a single-thread, meandering C4 stream type restored in 1987 below a braided D4 stream type above the project reach

Aerial image from Google Earth in 2013 showing the retention of a single-thread, meandering C4 stream type restored in 1987 below a braided D4 stream type above the project reach.

A sediment vortex tube below placed at the start of the restoration and below the upstream, braided reach to extract the excess bedload sediment before it enters the restored reach

A sediment vortex tube below placed at the start of the restoration and below the upstream, braided reach to extract the excess bedload sediment before it enters the restored reach.

Blanco River following restoration showing meandering channel and constructed floodplain
Blanco River prior to restoration showing overwide, braided reach

BEFORE RESTORATION: Blanco River prior to restoration showing overwide, braided reach.

AFTER RESTORATION: Blanco River following restoration showing meandering channel and constructed floodplain.

Blanco River in 2017 showing retention of the restored meandering channel
Blanco River in 1986 prior to restoration showing overwide, braided reach

BEFORE RESTORATION: Blanco River in 1986 prior to restoration showing overwide, braided reach.

AFTER RESTORATION: Blanco River in 2017 showing retention of the restored meandering channel.

Blanco River in 2017 showing retention of the restored 60 ft wide, single-thread stream with a well-vegetation floodplain
Blanco River in 1986 prior to restoration showing 600 foot wide braided reach

BEFORE RESTORATION: Blanco River in 1986 prior to restoration showing 600 foot wide braided reach.

AFTER RESTORATION: Blanco River in 2017 showing retention of the restored 60 ft wide, single-thread stream with a well-vegetation floodplain.

Wildland Hydrology Inc.
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