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FYRES: Research

FYRES students walk near a storm-eroded foredune on the way to their study area

Storm Impacts on a Foredune in Hoffmaster State Park

Mentored by: Jake Swineford
Team: Joshua DeVries, Nichole DeVries, Jonathan Gorter, Jacob Santucci, John Spykman

Project Description (from report abstract): Although studies have analyzed the effects of storms on sand transport and foredune development, few studies have targeted Great Lakes dunes. We investigated how autumn storms affected a foredune in Hoffmaster State Park, Michigan. Our study objectives were to analyze the nature of several autumn storms, measure erosion and deposition on the foredune, and measure effects of wave runup on the beach and foredune. We used sand traps and erosion pins to measure sand transport and surface changes. We mapped wave runup and vegetation change with GPS. Wind measurements were recorded with an on-site anemometer tower. During a two-week period, we documented three different storms with varying wind speeds and precipitation. During one storm, winds reached up to 15 m/s, causing erosion on the upper windward face of the foredune. All three storms showed wave runup onto the foredune, causing deposition in the first few rows of erosion pins. Wrack lines indicate wave runup as much as twenty meters beyond the pre-storm shoreline. Our study shows that the characteristics of autumn storms affect the amount and locations of foredune changes. Abstract (pdf)

Research Report: Swineford, Jacob T., Joshua K. DeVries, Nichole DeVries, Jonathan D. Gorter, Jacob Santucci, and John T. Spykman (2014). “The Impacts of Three Autumn Storms on a Lake Michigan Foredune.”  FYRES: Dunes Research Report #10. Grand Rapids (MI): Department of Geology, Geography and Environmental Studies, Calvin College. 14 p. Report (pdf)

Conference Presentation: Swineford, Jacob T., Nichole DeVries, Joshua DeVries, Jonathan D. Gorter, John T. Spykman and Jacob J. Santucci (2014). “Impacts of three autumn storms on a Lake Michigan foredune.” Annual Meeting of the Michigan Academy of Science, Arts, and Letters, Oakland University (Rochester, MI), 28 February 2014; poster. Abstract (pdf) Poster (pdf)


Research Information

This project is one of four FYRES research projects in 2013-2014.

FYRES 2013-2014 produced 5 research projects, 4 conference posters at the Michigan Academy of Arts, Sciences and Letters in February 2014, and 4 research reports.