Sunday, June 16, 2013

Fun Term: Wandering Meander

Way, way back when I took geology class, I learned a term:  Wandering Meander.  Google doesn't seem to know what I'm asking about, but I promise it's a thing.  A wandering meander is moving body of water that courses back and forth across its floodplain - sort of like the river equivalent of a snake.  Here in Wisconsin, there are tons of these streams and rivers.
This behavior, this inability to pick one course and stick to it, is what leads to the creation of ox-bow lakes, among other things.  They are very common geological feature that makes some amazing scenery.

I love seeing these meanders along roadways.  They always look the same to me, but they're always undulating a little bit.  Exaggerating this turn here, cutting that bank there.  Over [geological] time, they can utterly change the landscape around them.

Sort of reminds me of a song from Pocahontas...

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