Abstract

Beach and offshore profiles are evaluated to determine the effect of wind-wave forcing and long-term lake-level variation on profile change in the Great Lakes. The three distinct areas of profile change are: the beach-and-berm, the inner-bar, and the outer-bar regions. The beach-and-berm region exhibits a classical transition from a narrow highly eroded (winter) profile to a broad fully deposited (summer) profile, during ice free months. The inner bar moves actively under the influence of wind-waves, but lacks a well-defined seasonal pattern. The outer bar advances onshore from early spring to early winter in response to lake-level modulation of incident wind-waves. Empirical eigenfunction analysis provided confirmation of a hypothesized long-term (years) variation of the outer bar in direct response to lake-level variation.--Modified journal abstract.

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