I’ve enjoyed the reaction when I tell people what I did for work a fortnight ago: driving around north-east NSW looking at rivers for a week. But of course, while the week was as enjoyable as I make it sound, it wasn’t as simple or as cruisy. We had put together a list of 5128 sites over an area of 50,000 km2
and our mission was to conduct River Style®
and condition assessments at as many of these sites as possible, in four and a half days. We decided to divide and conquer: the A Team (Mark and I) tackled the sites in the southern catchments, while the B Team (Misko and Darcy) took on the northern catchments.
One of the most enjoyable aspects of the week was being able to visit such a vast range of stream types and conditions, especially since the nature of our work at Alluvium means our site visits are often to streams in need of some repair. Between the two teams, we went to countless sites that impressed us in many different ways. Here are some of our highlights.
A forested intact valley fill inland near Port Macquarie was Mark and my favourite.
And this headwater stream in the Fortis Creek National Park was a favourite of Darcy and Misko for it's excellent condition and aesthetics.
Some streams we visited may not have been in ideal condition, but they appealed to our inner geomorphology nerd:
This sand slug in the Clarence River (Darcy and Misko)
And this significant gravel deposits along the MacLeay River (Mark and I)
And of course, there was the wildlife. Some we like to see in a river and some we don’t like to see:
There are two reptiles in this photo - can you spot them? (hint: look to the bottom left and top right)
Wildlife we don't want to see in rivers.
On the whole, it was quite a nice way to spend a week working!