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Passage Creek flows on relatively nonresistant shales, then cuts through a gorge underlain by resistant sandstone. In the gorge, the stream gradient steepens, the size of bed material increases, a braided channel forms, and riparian-forest composition and growth form changes relative to areas outside the gorge. Effects of flooding are intensified within the gorge and revealed in the pattern and deformation of streamside vegetation. Increased stream gradient within the gorge provides for high stream power and coarse sediment deposition relative to the flood plain outside the gorge. A more diverse upland forest grows on the flood plain in the gorge. The riparian forest in the gorge may be an example of a nonequilibrium forest, resulting from periodic disturbance by destructive floods.-from Author
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Stream-grade variation and riparian- forest ecology along Passage Creek, Virginia.