River Severn

Primary Homework Help
The River Severn

A Key Stage 2 Resource for Rivers and Coasts

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In the upper course of of the River Severn, where vertical (downwards) erosion is dominant, many small waterfalls can be seen. Waterfalls usually occur where a band of hard rock lies next to soft rock.

image: vertical erosion
Soft rock is being eroded.
Pooh wonders if this is the first stage of a gorge forming?

The following falls on the Severn are just about a mile downstream from the source. The force of the water has shaped the triangular rock below.

image: small waterfall

Pooh wonders whether, one day, the force of the water will erode the rock underneath.

image; erosion

As the river passes over the hard rock, the soft rock below is eroded (worn away) more quickly than the hard rock leaving the hard rock elevated above the stream bed below. The drop gets steeper as the river erodes the soft rock beneath.

image: small waterfallimage: small waterfall

A plunge pool forms at the base of the waterfall.

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Key Vocabulary

A waterfall is a cascade of water over a hard rock step in the upper course of a river

Plunge Pool
A plunge pool is deep pool beneath a waterfall.

Erosion is the wearing away of the bottom and sides of the rivers by the force of the water, and material carried by the water.

Hydraulic Action
This process involves the force of water against the riverbed and banks.

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