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Bear Valley Creek

Study Site

Bear Valley Creek is located in the headwaters of the Middle Fork Salmon Drainage (part of Columbia River Basin) in Central Idaho (see map at right). Bear Valley Creek is a 497 km2 watershed, which is a left-bank tributary to the Middle Fork Salmon. Elk Creek is a major tributary to Bear Valey Creek. Both Bear Valley Creek and Elk Creek were the focus of green LiDaR channel and floodplain topographic surveys in 2004 and 2007 with a narrow-beam terrestrial-aquatic LiDaR system reported in McKean et al. (2008 & 2009a & b).

Change Detection with Green LiDaR

In 2008, Daniele Tonina, Jim McKean and I started collaborating to look at the potential of green LiDaR in change detection work and morphological sediment budgeting. As it was one of the few rivers (so far), where repeat green LiDaR surveys exist, it was an excellent opportunity to explore its . In a poster presented at AGU in 2009 (Wheaton et al. 2009), we focused initially on a subset of the dataset for Upper Elk Creek (study-reach shown at left). We have extended the fuzzy inference system in the DoD Uncertainty Analysis Software, to work for green LiDaR and are currently working on testing and refining this. We next hope to extend the change detection analysis over the entire surveys for Elk Creek and Bear Valley Creek to look for distinctive signatures of geomorphic change between the different systems over system scales.