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Incised Meander - Canyonlands

Incised Meander - Canyonlands
Photo Information
Copyright: James Parker (Jamesp) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1369 W: 9 N: 6334] (18906)
Genre: Landscapes
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2004-11-25
Categories: Desert, Mountain, River
Camera: Canon 1D Mark II, Canon 24-70 mm f 2,8 L-USM
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/125 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Theme(s): Earth from Above, Beautiful Landscapes [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2008-02-29 9:03
Viewed: 10969
Points: 34
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This was taken on the same flight as yesterday's posting.

A meander in general is a bend in a sinuous watercourse. A stream of any volume may assume a meandering course, alternatively eroding sediments from the outside of a bend and depositing them on the inside. The result is a snaking pattern as the stream meanders back and forth across its down-valley axis. When a meander gets cut off from the main stream, an oxbow lake is formed. Over time meanders migrate downstream, sometimes in such a short time as to create civil engineering problems for local municipalities attempting to maintain stable roads and bridges - this is well seen on the Mississippi.

The term derives from the river known to the ancient Greeks as (Μαίανδρος) Maiandros or Maeander (in present day Turkey), characterised by a very convoluted path along the lower reach. As such, even in Classical Greece the name of the river had become a common noun meaning anything convoluted and winding, such as decorative patterns or speech and ideas, as well as the geomorphological feature. Strabo said: "... its course is so exceedingly winding that everything winding is called meandering.'

The Meander river located south of Izmir, eastward the ancient Greek town of Miletus, now Turkish Milet. It flows through a graben in the Menderes Massif, but has a flood plain much wider than the meander zone in its lower reach. In the Turkish name, the Büyük Menderes River, Menderes is from Maeander.


When the land is uplifted, the river maintains its course and cuts downwards - the meanders do not migrate until uplift has stopped - hence with the uplift of the Rokies and Colorado Plateau, caused by the collision of the North American and PAcific Plates, the river Colorado continued its course, but cut downwards (memorably forming the Grand Canyon).

In the UK there is a superb example of an incised meander on the River Wear at Durham (where I went to University), where the Normans made use of it to build the castle and cathedral.

rousettus, jaycee, hester, Heaven, Miss_Piggy, eqshannon, Evelynn, CeltickRanger, albert, Adanac, boreocypriensis, zulfu, bahadir has marked this note useful
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To Evelynn: ThanksJamesp 1 03-01 14:07
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Critiques [Translate]

Hello James,
another great scene and its capture from another part of the world. Nicely composed.
Your notes always informative. I like to read them. As you already told, there are two rivers in Turkiye and we say "Menderes" in Turkish instead of "Meander". Two biggest rivers of Western Anatolia are Büyük [Greater] and Küçük [Little] Menderes rivers.
Also several endemic inland fishes called after meander, e.g. Pseudophoxinus meandricus and P. meandri.
Thanks for sharing both of photo and information.
Best wishes

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-02-29 10:07]

Hi James,

Thank you for your nice comments on my 300th. What a view this is!!!! It is much more impressive than when you see this area on the ground. Marvelous colors of the west - good details - excellent composition. I really love Utah - it's beauty is unique.


Hello James,
Thank you again for sharing this awesome land from above! perfect landscape photo indeed!
the colouration is so amazing beautiful with good displayed of light and shadows!
much appreciated for the useful and informative notes
a great weekend to you

  • Great 
  • hester Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1515 W: 18 N: 3165] (11638)
  • [2008-02-29 11:53]

Hi James

What a stunning view. The rock colours and the winding water looks great.



  • Great 
  • Heaven Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 996 W: 123 N: 2341] (7912)
  • [2008-02-29 12:15]

Hi James!

You present us a fscinating landscape with amazing shapes, patterns and colors. Pictures like this one remember us how beautiful our planet is. It's not only Canyonland, but also Dreamland...

Kind regards


Hallo James
Impressive aerial view. What an extraordinary landscape with lots of details to appreciate and take pleasure in. Zigzag and fanciful flows of water. That river is indeed snaking its way around the Canyon. Looking at this image reminded me of the Geography lessons I had while I was still a scholar. I envy you about how many beautiful and different places you are able to visit. This is indeed beautiful scenery. Thanks for sharing.
Kind regards

What? You have been waiting for this time to bring out your big guns eh? wow...This is not only something I was not aware of...it must be something many were not aware of..I had not heard of this at all..and llok at how grand you have made it...Fantastic!

Hi James,

Thanks for another illustrated geology lesson. There is nothing like an aerial shot to show the erosion process. I really love the reds and turquoise colors. I tried a workshop to showcase them a bit more. It isn't as educational but I do like the colors and patterns.

Evelynn : )

  • Great 
  • gannu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 988 W: 4 N: 3277] (14761)
  • [2008-03-01 2:47]

James, Superb shot and lovely scene. This is interesting and lovely landscape. Ganesh

Hello James,
I like the color of this great landscape
Great composition too
Have a nice W-E

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2008-03-01 3:28]

What a stunning scene! Must have been awesome to see it!
There is superb depth to the photo.
Great composition with the winding river being placed very well in the frame.
Great detail and sharpness.
Well done James!


  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2008-03-01 6:24]

Hello James,
The power of water is greatly illustrated in your last two images. I remember flying over this area in a commercial airliner and being impressed by the color. You have captured the color and textures of the different layers and formations incredibly well, thank you.

hello James

excellent aerial shot of the Grand Canyon,
an excellent vue from the airs, i love to see the mountains at far,
in 1988 when i went to a travel from Montréal to Los Angeles
from the airs i saw and took in photo de Grand Canyon
(i was with a little kodak camera), TFS


Hello James,

Splendid landscape capture this beautiful canyonlands. Excelent composition and useful information also.
TFS and Cheers,


  • Great 
  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2008-03-01 11:00]

Hello James! Another great shot! I really like this interresting composition of the canyon, the sharpness and exposure are just great! Very well done indeed! Thanks,


  • Great 
  • zulfu Gold Star Critiquer [C: 685 W: 0 N: 2] (43)
  • [2008-03-02 2:06]

Hi James, an another perfect landcape capture with superb composition, excellent details and sharpnes. TFS. Regards,

Hi James,
Great capture of this beautifully coloured landscape, nice colors and composition. TFS.
Regards, Bahadır

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