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Recent debris flow studies in Colorado indicate that the state is most susceptible to debris flows that initiate from surface-water runoff that erodes and entrains hillslope and channel sediment. These runoff-initiated debris flows grow in size by entraining sediment along travel paths, thereby increasing their destructive potential. Yet, the mechanics of initiation, erosion, and entrainment processes for runoff-initiated debris flows are poorly understood. The steep, bedrock-dominated flanks of the formerly glaciated Chalk Creek Valley near Nathrop, Colorado, generate an average of two runoff-initiated debris flows per year, making the valley an ideal natural laboratory for debris-flow research. This two-day...

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