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Stanton Repeat Photography

Mile 212.1, Rapid 2, Upstream View from River Left (Stake 1782[a])

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Stake 1782[a], June 1889 View Larger Image
June 1889
Nims took this view on the left side of the river at the head of Rapid 2, looking upstream toward Lower Red Lake Canyon and Brown Betty Rapid (Rapid 1). The camera station is on an early Holocene debris fan that has been truncated by the Colorado River, leaving the ragged, boulder-strewn slopes on the right side. A large number of Mormon tea are visible on the uneroded tops of this old debris fan, and shorter-lived species occupy the steeper slopes down to the riparian zone. The dark-looking trees in the center distance are netleaf hackberry trees closer to the shoreline and Utah juniper upslope and behind. Discharge is about 40,000 ft3/s, and Rapid 1 is mostly washed out at that level.
Photo credit: Franklin A. Nims, 57-RS-48, courtesy of The National Archives

Stake 1782[a], 17 September 1921 View Larger Image
17 September 1921
In 1921, the USGS surveyed the river corridor with the aim of locating potential dam sites. Geologist Sidney Paige coincidentally captured this photograph taken from a position remarkably close to Nims’, albeit at a much lower discharge in the river (less than 10,000 ft3/s) and downslope from the top of the debris fan. The steep slopes have scattered individuals of longleaf brickelbush, a short-lived riparian species. The juniper grove and netleaf hackberry trees appear to be approximately the same, but what appears to be an isolated cottonwood tree appears directly behind two rocks exposed in the river. Tamarisk is not present.
Photo credit: Sidney Paige, 1392, courtesy of the USGS Photographic Library

Stake 1782[a], 22 July 1991 View Larger Image
22 July 1991
At this time, flow in the river is about 7,000 ft3/s, or approximately the same level as in 1921 on the basis of the exposure of the rocks in the channel below Rapid 1. A large number of Mormon tea have persisted the intervening 102 years between this and Nims’ view. Perennial grasses, particularly Indian ricegrass and needle-and-thread, have greatly increased. Persistent netleaf hackberry trees are hidden in a sea of non-native tamarisk, and longleaf brickellbush and coyote willow have increased along the shoreline. What is known as Brown Betty Beach appears on the left side (river right), with a number of persistent netleaf hackberry trees upslope.
Photo credit: Ted Melis

Stake 1782[a], 10 June 2002 View Larger Image
10 June 2002
Although the perennial grasses have mostly died back, some individuals persist along with the Mormon tea in the right foreground. Similarly, most of the netleaf hackberry have persisted and have grown larger, particularly behind the Brown Betty Beach. Stands of coyote willow have expanded on both channel banks, and the number of longleaf brickellbush has greatly increased in the midground along with small tamarisk.
Photo credit: Dominic Oldershaw

Stake 1782[a], 31 July 2010 View Larger Image
31 July 2010
Perennial grasses have again increased, this time including galleta grass in the foreground. Mormon tea shrubs and a number of longleaf brickellbush persist, while tamarisk throughout the view are dead or dying as a result of the tamarisk leaf beetle, which was released upstream in about 2007. The largest change in the netleaf hackberry trees is the noticeable increase in size of individuals, and seedlings are apparent near the long-lived trees. Many of the Utah juniper in the distance are alive although dead snags are also present.
Photo credit: Steve Young

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