The Vjosa River flows freely in Albania -

Today’s Image of the Day from NASA Earth Observatory features the Vjosa River, which is one of the only free-flowing rivers still found in Europe. According to NASA, there are more than 1.2 million dams and other barriers on rivers across the European continent.

The Vjosa River flows for 169 miles from the Pindus Mountains through northwestern Greece and southwestern Albania.

“On September 9, 2022, the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8 captured this natural-color image of the river winding through several gorges and its wide sand- and gravel-filled channel before draining into the Adriatic Sea,” says NASA.

“In Greece (just southeast of this image), the river is called the Aoös and flows through the rugged terrain and dense forests of Vikos-Aoös National Park. It joins with a large tributary (the Sarandapor) near the border with Albania and then navigates through a sequence of steep canyons.” 

“At the river’s middle reaches, it flows across wide gravel and sand bars and develops multiple interlacing braided channels. As additional tributaries (including the Drino, Bënça, and Shushicë rivers) flow into the Vjosa, the braided channels revert to being a single meandering channel in the lowlands near the Adriatic Sea.”

Image Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

By Chrissy Sexton, Staff Writer

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