Mapping the Colorado River Corridor in Grand Canyon for Ecosystem Monitoring


Friday, March 1, 2019


Memorial Union, Arizona Ballroom (Room 221)
301 E Orange St, Tempe, AZ 85281


Matt Kaplinski

Presentation Abstract

The passage of the Grand Canyon Protection Act (1992) and the completion of the Glen Canyon Dam Environmental Impact Statement (1996) ushered in a new era of environmental monitoring and research of the Colorado River corridor in Grand Canyon. Technological advancements in surveying and mapping systems over this period have made it possible to map larger areas with an increasing level of precision and accuracy. All of these mapping efforts rely on an accurate geodetic control network along the rim and inner canyon corridor. Examples of mapping efforts include aerial photographic, topographic, and bathymetric missions. Aerial overflights of the entire canyon corridor have been conducted in 2002, 2009, and 2013 and the high-resolution orthophographs and photogrammetrically-derived topography form the base data set for a number of investigations. From 2009 to 2017, over 160 miles of channel have been mapped using multibeam bathymetry. The bathymetric maps reveal the form of the Channel bed and allow researchers to asses flow operations from Glen Canyon dam on the sediment resources within the Colorado River ecosystem.