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Abstract

This one-day field trip is designed to examine the morphology and stratigraphy of a mesotidal tidal inlet, Price Inlet, and barrier island, Capers Island, located in the central portion of the South Carolina coast. The tidal range in the study area averages around 2 m (mesotidal; Davies, 1964) and waves average 50-60 cm in height. Dominant longshore sediment transport is from north to south, with 150,000-200,000 m3 of sand moving past any given point on the Capers Island beach each year (Kana, 1976, 1979).

The field trip will be conducted at low tide, which will allow the participants to observe in detail intertidal features such as bedforms, swash bars, and inlet channels. Trenches dug through swash bars and beach berms will allow for detailed inspection of the internal sedimentary structures of these features. The main ebb channel of the inlet will be surveyed with a depth recorder and bottom samples will be collected along its length in order to demonstrate the effects of the tidal currents in shaping the inlet and its ebb-tidal delta. A 3 km walk along the front of the northern half of Capers Island, as well as a perpendicular transect across the island’s midsection, will expose the participants to all important aspects of the morphology of a typical regressive, mesotidal barrier island. A core taken in the middle of the island will be displayed in order to augment the description of the island’s Holocene stratigraphy.

An oblique aerial photograph of the area to be visited is

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