The Melach between Sellrain and Gries
|Water body code||AT: 2-8-135|
|Drainage via||Inn → Danube → Black Sea|
|Source||in the Lüsenstal
|Mouth||between Unterperfuss and Kematen into the river Inn
|Height difference||1121 m|
|Bottom slope||48 ‰|
|Catchment area||245.4 km²|
|Discharge at gauge In der Au
AEo: 144.4 km²
Location: 5.85 km upstream of the estuary
|Right tributaries||Fotscher Bach, Sendersbach|
The upper reaches of the Melach in the Lüsenstal valley
The Melach is a right tributary of the Inn in the Sellraintal in Tyrol with a length of about 23 km.
The Melach originates from the confluence of several spring creeks north of the Lüsener Fern in the Lüsenstal valley in the Stubai Alps, which belongs to the municipality of St. Sigmund im Sellrain. It first flows northwards through the Lüsenstal valley. In Gries im Sellrain it joins the Zirmbach coming from the western Sellrain valley and turns northeast. It flows through the Sellrain valley and takes up the Fotscher Bach in Sellrain. At the end of the valley near Kematen it has cut into a deep gorge before exiting into the Inn valley, where it has built up an alluvial cone and pushed the Inn northwards to the foot of the Martinswand. Between Unterperfuss and Kematen in Tyrol it flows into the Inn. This confluence represents the official dividing line between the Upper Inn Valley and the Lower Inn Valley.
Catchment area and water flow
The natural catchment area of the Melach is about 245 km², of which 5.1 km² are (2 %) is glaciated. The highest point in the catchment area is the Hintere Brunnenkogel at sea level.
Several tributaries of the Melach are diverted into the Längental reservoir of the Sellrain-Silz power plant, reducing the effective catchment area by 60 km².
The mean discharge at the gauge In der Au is 4.08 m³/s, which corresponds to a discharge donation of 28.3 l/s-km². The Melach shows a discharge regime typical for a mountain stream without significant glacier influence. The mean discharge in the water-richest month of June (8.06 m³/s) is about five times higher than in the water-poorest month of February (1.57 m³/s). Heavy rainfall and snowmelt regularly caused the Melach to overflow its banks, especially in its lower reaches. As early as around 1280, bank protection structures to protect the fields and meadows around Kematen were mentioned. Most recently, in June 1965, there was widespread flooding of the fields in the Inn valley and the undermining of the railway embankment of the Arlberg railway, which was interrupted for two weeks.
The headwaters and the upper reaches of the Melach in the rear Lüsenstal valley are located in the Stubai Alps rest area, where their course is largely natural; from the Juifenau above Gries, the banks of the Melach are almost entirely built up.
The Melach has water quality class I-II throughout its course.
The name of the Melach, formerly also called Melchbach, Melch or Malch, is traced back to the word “milk”, in allusion to the milky-white water (glacial milk).
In contrast, the name is also associated with the root mel “gloomy” (related to Greek μέλας).
– Collection of images, videos and audio files
- Water level, flow and water temperature of the Melach at the gauge In der Au (Hydrographischer Dienst Tirol)
- TIRIS – Tyrolean Regional Planning and Information System
- Province of Tyrol: Hydrographic data
- Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management (ed.): Hydrographisches Jahrbuch von Österreich 2009. 117. vol. Vienna 2011, p. OG 98, PDF (12.1 MB) on bmlrt .gv.at (Yearbook 2009)
- Max H. Fink, Otto Moog, Reinhard Wimmer: Fließgewässer-Naturräume Österreichs. Umweltbundesamt Monographien Band 128, Vienna 2000, p. 47 (PDF;475 kB)
- Info board Inn: Innsbruck and the flood (PDF; 3.7 MB)
- Municipality of Kematen in Tyrol: The Melach disaster of 1965(Memento of the Originals august 15, 2015 on the Internet Archive) Info:The archive linkwas inserted automatically and not yet checked. Please check original and archive link according to instructions and then remove this note.
- Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management (ed.): Saprobiological water quality of Austria’s running waters. Status 2005.(PDF; 1 MB (Memento oftheOriginals of 22 December 2015 in the Internet Archive) Info:The archive linkwas inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check original and archive link according to instructions and then remove this note. )
- Beda Weber: The Land of Tyrol. With an appendix: Vorarlberg. A handbook for travellers. Volume One: Introduction. Northern Tyrol (Inn, Lech, Grossachen region). Verlag der Wagner’sche Buchhandlung, Innsbruck 1837, p. 431 (bookin Google Book Search)
- Otto Mayr: The water names of North Tyrol and related names. In: Publications of the Ferdinandeum Museum 6 (1927), p. 247 (PDF;4.1 MB)