Research Bulletin (Iowa Agriculture and Home Economics Experiment Station)


The Platte River has influenced the Missouri River below the mouth of the Platte by contributing sizable suspended and coarser-textured bed loads. Consequently, the Missouri River has been and is a braided stream in a reach about 43 miles long below the mouth of the Platte. In this reach the channel is wider, is less sinuous, has greater low-water slope profile, and contains numerous bars and islands. The Otoe Bend area, in this reach of the Missouri River near the southwestern corner of Iowa, has inherited these channel characteristics.

By use of historic maps and aerial photographs, the lateral shifting of the river channel at Otoe Bend may be reconstructed. Adjustments of scale and geographic locations must be made to compare features of all maps and aerial photographs to the present landforms in the area. The older maps usually are not as accurate as present-day cartography with photogrammetric field control. Within the different levels of cartographic accuracy, however, correlation of landforms can be made by similarity of features or similarity of sequences of features.



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