Carbon River

The Carbon River area is in the northwest corner of Mount Rainier National Park. Like other areas throughout the park, the landscape of the Carbon River area has been shaped by the past forces of volcanic activity as well as by glaciers. The Carbon Glacier, which has the lowest terminus of any glacier in the contiguous United States, continues to play a powerful role in the Carbon River valley. In the videos below, explore the history and geology of the Carbon Glacier, break down the Anatomy of a Flood, and finally look at how the park is trying to mitigate some of the effects of flooding in the Carbon River Project.
 
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Duration:
10 minutes, 19 seconds

The Carbon Glacier has shaped both the landscape of Mount Rainier as well as the history of Mount Rainier National Park. This impressive glacier also plays a powerful role in shaping the future of both the mountain and its national park.

 
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Duration:
5 minutes, 38 seconds

What is a flood? Why do floods occur at Mount Rainier National Park, and how are floods changing the landscape? The video "Anatomy of a Flood" breaks down the answers to these questions using the Carbon River as a prime example.

 

The following film includes interviews with Eric Walkinshaw, Project Manager and Civil Engineer for Mount Rainier National Park, and Kirt Hanson, Project Engineer and Geologist with Cardno Entrix, discussing the work that has been going on in the Carbon area to protect the road and facilities from future damage through the installation of flood protection structures such as engineered log jams.

The historic Carbon River Road was heavily damaged during a November 2006 storm event that resulted in heavy flooding and closed the road to vehicle use since then. Due to aggradation, rocks and gravel have raised the bed of the Carbon River up as much as 31 feet since the Carbon River Road was constructed next to the river in the 1920s. Several sections of the historic road are now lower than the adjacent river and increasingly vulnerable to flood damage.

 
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Duration:
5 minutes, 33 seconds

Discover what it takes to install flood protection structures such as engineered log jams. In the future, these structures will help protect park facilities and roads from damage from flooding. RT: 05:33

 

Note: Closed Captioning on videos can be turned off and on by clicking on the "CC" button on the bottom of the viewer window.

 

Last updated: May 31, 2017

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