A watershed condition analysis of the Bluewater Creek watershed near Grants, New Mexico, showed that although most of the uplands were in at least satisfactory condition, stream channel meander cutting continued to provide excessive sediments to the fluvial system. This article describes an innovative revetment system that eventually solved the problem. The design uses predrilled galvanized steel U-channel sign posts commonly used to erect highway signs, and fence material of 12.5 gauge galvanized V-mesh woven wire. Each revetment section consists of several components. A new permanent channel is dug to keep water away from the eroding bank, provide work space for construction, and a site for sediment deposition and plant growth. The new channel must be maximized to maintain overall stream length and gradient. The revetment consists of two elements: one or more main segments aligned parallel to flow, and a series of baffles oriented perpendicular to flow, extending from the main segments back into the streambank. Main segments and baffles are faced with the fence material, attached so that water and debris will force the fence material against the posts. Wire rope is used for top support. All disturbed soil was seeded to promote ground cover and reduce erosion. Local willow cuttings were planted along the new channel banks and cottonwood poles were planted to provide a future over-story component and seed source. Livestock grazing was eliminated for at least 5 years. Structures installed at sites G and H functioned flawlessly during snowmelt runoff in spring 1987, but the new channel widened considerably. Vegetation growth did well during 1987 and in 1988. Several log grade-control structures were unsuccessful due to improper installation, but properly installed continue to work well. Project costs for materials, labor, and equipment totaled $27,700. With a bank length of 1,400 ft, cost averaged $19.79 per ft of protected bank. As plant growth continues, maintenance costs should prove minimal. High intensity storms in summer 1989 put the revetments to the test, and they did their job as designed.

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  • Corporate Authors:

    Public Works Journal Corporation

    200 South Broad Street
    Ridgewood, NJ  United States  07451
  • Authors:
    • LaFayette, R A
    • Pawelek, D W
  • Publication Date: 1989-12

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; Photos; References;
  • Pagination: p. 54-57
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00490498
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jan 31 1990 12:00AM