- Chiefly Western U.S. and Western Canada. a deep ravine or gulch, usually dry, that has been formed by running water.
- a small valley.
- a low-lying area.
- a small intermittent stream.
- Geology. a stream of lava.
Origin of coulee
Examples from the Web for coulee
It was the only course to pursue with anyone from Denson coulee.Chip, of the Flying U
B. M. Bower
From the rim of the coulee, the man gazed about him, searching for a familiar landmark.
Near the mouth of the coulee he crawled through a wire fence.
We lost one in the river, an' the other pulled us ashore, an' then beat it up the coulee.
No spear of grass was visible and the rock floor of the coulee was baked and dry.
- a flow of molten lava
- such lava when solidified
- Western US and Canadian a dry stream valley, especially a long steep-sided gorge or ravine that once carried melt water from a glacier
- a small intermittent stream in such a ravine
Word Origin and History for coulee
"deep ravine, seasonally flooded," 1804, a North American word, originally in areas explored by French trappers, from French coulée "flow" (17c.), from fem. past participle of couler "to flow," from Latin colare "to filter, strain" (see colander).