Beach growth driven by intertidal sandbar welding

Nicholas Cohn, Peter Ruggiero, Sierd de Vries, Gabriel García-Medina

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientific

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Seasonal variability in wave conditions drive corresponding cycles of erosion and accretion along sandy beaches. Despite the fact that these oscillations are well documented at numerous sites throughout the world, the physical processes driving beach recovery remain poorly understood. Using field data from a low sloping, dissipative beach in the U.S. Pacific Northwest we show that the onshore migration of intertidal sandbars contributes to beach growth in a rapidly prograding system. Over a six week period two intertidal sandbars are shown to migrate onshore resulting in the generation of a low relief berm and local beach width increases of up to 20 m. Although significant alongshore variability of intertidal morphological change was observed, a 2.5 km stretch of coast is shown to experience beach growth as a result of intertidal bar welding.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of Coastal Dynamics 2017
Subtitle of host publicationHelsingør, Denmark
EditorsT. Aagaard, R. Deigaard, D. Fuhrman
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventCoastal Dynamics 2017 - Kulturværftet, Helsingor, Denmark
Duration: 12 Jun 201716 Jun 2017


ConferenceCoastal Dynamics 2017
Internet address


  • beach recovery
  • intertidal sandbars
  • sediment transport
  • morphodynamics
  • shoreline change

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