Kevin Kincare, Ph.D.

I am currently mapping the glacial geology of the Manistee National Forest and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in northwest lower Michigan as well as ongoing work in the St. Joseph River basin of southwest Michigan and northern Indiana. I am also a member of the Great Lakes Geologic Mapping Coalition which includes all 8 states that have Great Lakes coastline.


My research goals are to: 1) develop local/regional Quaternary stratigraphic frameworks in each map area, 2) improve our ability to predict the 3-D stratigraphy and distribution of material units (gravel, sand, silt-clay, till) in glacial systems, 3) better assess how stratigraphic features affect flow of ground water through the system, and 4) assure that the most consistent geologic models are used in collaborative studies.

The existing literature does not deal with one of the basic facts of drainage basins developed in glacial landscapes.  Where glaciers were unconstrained by bedrock uplands (e.g. much of the upper Midwest), drainage basins are often sequentially constructed from their distal to proximal areas rather than the classical evolution by headward erosion of streams and springs over long periods of time.  Glacial retreat adds sections to the basin in step-wise fashion as the glacier margin moves basinward.  The pattern, common in the literature, of regional slope and stream-network development corresponding to a pre-existing structural or stratigraphic pattern does not apply to these drainages.  Rivers draining today into the Lake Michigan basin were constructed in discrete parts during retreat of the Lake Michigan lobe and, in the case of the St. Joseph and Manistee Rivers, further imprinted by a buried Saginaw lobe terrain as well as the addition of outwash from the proximal edge by the Huron/Erie lobe.  Each discrete part has a distinct depositional history that may not match that of the previously or subsequently added segments.   One of the major outcomes of our research is that a realistic model of post-glacial drainage basin development must reflect abrupt contrasts of sediment properties and slope gradients related to each successive ice-marginal position.

Recent Publications:

Kincare K.A. and Linker J.S. 2005. Surficial geologic map of the Hamburg 7.5 minute quadrangle, Michigan Geological Survey Open-File Report 2005-5, 1:24,000 scale. 

Linker J.S. and Kincare K.A. 2005. Surficial geologic map of the Howell 7.5 minute quadrangle, Michigan Geological Survey Open-File Report 2005-3, 1:24,000 scale. 

Kincare K.A. 2005. Surficial geologic map of the Stockbridge 7.5 minute quadrangle, Michigan Geological Survey Open-File Report 2005-1, 1:24,000 scale.

Kincare K.A. 2007. Response of the St. Joseph River to lake-level changes during the last 12,000 years in the Lake Michigan basin. Journal of Paleolimnology 37(3):383-394.

Kincare K.A. 2007. Glacial Geology of the Leelanau Peninsula, Michigan, American Institute of Professional Geologists Annual Meeting, Field Trip Guidebook Series, 45 p.

Kincare K.A. and Larson G.J. 2008 Glacial geology of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.  Guidebook for the Michigan State University College of Natural Science Alumni fieldtrip, 40 p.

Kincare K.A. and Larson G.J. 2009. Geologic evolution of the Great Lakes. In: Schaetzl, R.J., Darden J.T., and D. Brandt, (editors). Michigan Geography and Geology. Pearson Custom Publishers, Boston, p. 174-190.

Larson G.J. and Kincare K.A. 2009. Late Quaternary history of the eastern Mid-Continent region, USA. In: Schaetzl, R.J., Darden J.T., and D. Brandt, (editors). Michigan Geography and Geology. Pearson Custom Publishers, Boston, p. 69-90

Kincare, K.A. and Esch, J., 2011, Surficial geologic map of the South Lyon 7.5 minute quadrangle: Michigan Geological Survey Surficial Geologic Map Series SGM-09-01, 1:24,000 scale, 1 sheet.

Stone, B.D., Stone, J.R., DiGiacomo-Cohen, M.L., and Kincare, K.A., 2011, Surficial Geologic map of the Norton-Manomet-Tiverton-Sconticut Neck 23-quadrangle area in southeast Massachusetts: U.S. Geological Survey Open-file Report OFR 2006-1260F, scale 1:24,000, 23 sheets.

Luehmann, M.D., Peter, B., Connallon, C.B., Schaetzl, R.J., Smidt, S.J., Liu, W., Kincare, K.A. Walkowiac, T.A., Thorlund, E., and Holler, M.S., 2015, Loamy, two-storied soils in southwestern Lower Michigan, USA: A mixture of loess with the underlying outwash sand, Annals of the Association of American Geographers. , v 106(3), p.551-572.

Berg, R.C., Brown, S.E., Thomason, J.F., Hasenmueller, N.R., Letsinger, S.L., Kincare, K.A., Esch, J.M., Kehew, A.E., Thorleifson, L.H., Kozlowski, A.L., Bird, B.C., Pavey, R.R., Bajc, A.F., Burt, A.K., Fleeger, G.M., and Carson, E.C., 2016, A multiagency and multijurisdictional approach to mapping the glacial deposits of the Great Lakes region in three dimensions, in Wessel, G.R., and Greenberg, J.K., eds., Geoscience for the Public Good and Global Development: Toward a Sustainable Future: Geological Society of America Special Paper 520, 10 p. 415-448, doi:10.1130/2016.2520(37).