Profiling using the Emery Method is a simple way to measure the transverse profile of a beach using a tape and leveling rods. A hand level will be necessary if the horizon is not visible. In order to accurately measure profile changes must be able to consistanty relocated and precisely remeasure your profile.
Setting up your profile location:
1. Mark the backshore end of the profile with some permanent physiographic feature or marker. If none is available then you'll need to put in a metal stake--with permission.
Initial measurements
1. Measure the relative elevation of the beach and your backshore marker. (eg. change in distance = o, change in elevation -30cm from top of post/marker to beach). Unless a storm deposits or erodes sediment from the backshore this measurement should not change. If there's been no wave activity on the backshore but your backshore profiles vary then your measurements may be inaccurate. This is why its a good idea to hand plot and check your points before leaving the field. Note any deposition or erosion by wind.

2. Line of profile: Locate and stake the bearing of your profile line--it must be perpendicular to the beach face. Every time you profile along the same line you must maintain the same bearing! 
1. To ensure the longest possible profile for the period of measurement, profile during low tide and expect to get your feet wet. If the tide is going out work from the backshore to the water line.

2. Profile points at 1-to 5-meter intervals using a tape to measure distance (d), and the profiling rods to measure changes in elevation (Δe). Record the changes in elevation and the distance between each point on the profile paper provided.  When measuring distance the tape should be level and pulled tight.
Note: Space your points so that all variations in topography are recorded.

3. Mark each profile station with a chaining rod or stake, and make sure that they are all aligned along your profile line!

4. Record and plot your profile as you go along and write down as many comments and observations as possible (e.g. grain size, bedforms, debris lines, berm crest, etc. ) <Beach Profile>
5. When you get back to the class plot your data using the X-Y scatterplot in Excel or similar spreedsheet. (X=cumulative distance, Y=change in elevation between stations)
Additional References

Lindley Hanson/email /Gls214
Department of Geological Sciences, Salem State College, Salem, MA
last updated 6/19/09