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Stanton Repeat Photography

Mile 108.3, Bass Camp , Upstream View from River Right (Stake 1580)

Viewing Grand Canyon Site 69 of 119 Return to Main Stanton Index

Stake 1580, 17 February 1890 View Larger Image
17 February 1890
This view captures a broad expanse of sand at the upper end of Bass Camp, a heavily used campsite frequented by river runners. This part of the sandbar, which probably is wind-transported the short distance upslope from the Colorado River, has scattered catclaw and Mormon tea in the midground and Mormon tea with other shrubs, particularly a few brittlebush, in the midground and left background. A Mormon tea appears in the center foreground. The crew’s footprints are clearly visible in the sand.
Photo credit: Robert B. Stanton, 57-RS-516, courtesy of The National Archives

Stake 1580, 15 February 1991 View Larger Image
15 February 1991
A century later, the sand has deflated in some areas, particularly at the top of the dune, and aggraded in others, and more vegetation now present, stabilizing this eolian sand as it has in many other parts of Grand Canyon. Many of the catclaw and Mormon tea have persisted the intervening century. Other plants present include beavertail pricklypear, brittlebush, and burroweed.
Photo credit: Raymond M. Turner

Stake 1580, 23 September 2010 View Larger Image
23 September 2010
Many of the Mormon tea and catclaw that were present in 1890 are still alive; and several other woody plants visible in 1991 persist the intervening 19 years. The amount of sand is similar to that present in 1991. The apparent increase in density of perennial vegetation beyond the eolian sand patch appears to mostly be the result of increases in perennial grasses and brittlebush.
Photo credit: Bill Lemke

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