Paleoflood Investigations to Improve Flood-Frequency Estimates for Eastern Colorado

Science Center Objects

The peak-streamflow regional-regression equations (PSRREs) in the Plains hydrologic region in eastern Colorado have the largest uncertainty of any hydrologic region in Colorado. Reliable peak-streamflow information is critical for the proper design of stream-related infrastructure, such as bridges and dams, and flood-plain inundation maps. In an effort to provide more reliable peak-streamflow information in the Plains region, the USGS, in cooperation with the Colorado Department of Transportation, developed PSRREs for estimating the 50-, 20-, 10-, 4-, 2-, 1-, 0.5-, 0.2-percent annual exceedance-probability discharge for natural streamflow in eastern Colorado.

BACKGROUND:

Reliable peak-streamflow information is critical for the proper design of stream-related infrastructure, such as bridges and dams, and floodplain inundation maps. At gaged sites, where sufficient long-term streamflow data have been collected, statistics can be obtained from available publications, by an analysis of available data in the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Water Information System, or other sources of flood information. Estimates also are needed at ungaged sites, however, where no site-specific streamflow data are available. Large areas with few streamflow gages having short periods of record have caused large uncertainties in the regional-regression equations used to estimate peak streamflow. Additional flood information may improve the reliability of the regional-regression equations in the Plains hydrologic region of eastern Colorado. A total of 188 streamgages, with a combined total of 6,536 years of record and an average of approximately 35 years of record per streamgage, was used to develop the peak-streamflow equations. In addition, paleoflood data was documented at 41 streamgages and 3 streamgages had previously collected paleoflood data for a total of 44 streamgages with paleoflood or non-exceedance bound data.

OBJECTIVES:

  • Compile systematic flood data available at USGS, Colorado Division of Water Resources, and Nebraska Department of Natural Resources streamgages through water year 2013 (October 1, 2012 through September 31, 2013) in eastern Colorado and adjacent States.
  • Collect paleoflood data at streamgages to supplement the systematic flood data.
  • Perform flood-frequency analysis at each streamgage following guidelines outlined in Advisory Committee on Water Data, Bulletin 17C, (England, 2015)
  • Provide updated regional peak-streamflow equations for eastern Colorado and update USGS StreamStats program with new equations.

 

List of 188 gages used to update the regional peak-streamflow equations for eastern Colorado.
Site ID Site Name
6668040 RABBIT CREEK NEAR WHEATLAND, WY
6675300 HORSE CREEK TRIBUTARY NEAR LITTLE BEAR, WY 
6687000 BLUE CREEK NEAR LEWELLEN, NE 
6707000 NF SOUTH PLATTE RIVER AT SOUTH PLATTE, CO 
6708500 DEER CREEK NEAR LITTLETON, CO 
6709500 PLUM CREEK NEAR LOUVIERS, CO 
6710385 BEAR CREEK ABOVE EVERGREEN, CO 
6710990 PARMALEE GULCH AT MOUTH, AT INDIAN HILLS, CO 
6711000 TURKEY CREEK NEAR MORRISON, CO 
6712000 CHERRY CREEK NEAR FRANKTOWN, CO 
6712500 CHERRY CREEK NEAR MELVIN, CO 
6718550 NORTH CLEAR CREEK ABOVE MOUTH NR BLACK HAWK, CO 
6719500 CLEAR CREEK NEAR GOLDEN, CO 
6724000 ST. VRAIN CREEK AT LYONS, CO 
6724500 LEFT HAND CREEK NEAR BOULDER, CO 
6726900 BUMMERS GULCH NEAR EL VADO, CO 
6727500 FOURMILE CREEK AT ORODELL, CO 
6730300 COAL CREEK NEAR PLAINVIEW, CO 
6730500 BOULDER CREEK AT MOUTH NEAR LONGMONT, CO 
6736000 NORTH FORK BIG THOMPSON RIVER AT DRAKE, CO 
6736650 CEDAR CREEK AT CEDAR COVE, CO 
6739500 BUCKHORN CREEK NEAR MASONVILLE, CO 
6742000 LITTLE THOMPSON RIVER NEAR BERTHOUD, CO 
6751490 NORTH FORK CACHE LA POUDRE RIVER AT LIVERMORE, CO 
6755000 SOUTH CROW CREEK NEAR HECLA, WY 
6755960 CROW CREEK AT 19TH STREET, AT CHEYENNE, WY 
6758200 KIOWA CREEK AT KIOWA, CO 
6758700 MIDDLE BIJOU CREEK TRIBUTARY NR DEER TRAIL, CO 
6759100 BIJOU CREEK NEAR FT. MORGAN, CO 
6761900 LODGEPOLE CREEK TRIBUTARY NEAR PINE BLUFFS, WY 
6762500 LODGEPOLE CREEK AT BUSHNELL, NE 
6762600 LODGEPOLE CREEK TRIBUTARY NO 2 NEAR ALBIN, WY 
6763500 LODGEPOLE CREEK AT RALTON, NE 
6767200 NO FK PLUM CR TRIB NR FARNAM, NE 
6821300 NORTH FORK ARIKAREE RIVER TRIBUTARY NR SHAW, CO 
6821400 NORTH FORK BLACK WOLF CREEK NEAR VERNON, CO 
6821500 ARIKAREE RIVER AT HAIGLER, NE 
6823000 NORTH FORK REPUBLICAN RIVER AT COLORADO-NEBRASKA 
6823500 BUFFALO CREEK NEAR HAIGLER, NE 
6825000 SOUTH FORK REPUBLICAN RIVER NEAR IDALIA, CO 
6825500 LANDSMAN CREEK NEAR HALE, CO  
6826900 SAND CREEK NEAR HALE, CO 
6829700 THOMPSON CANYON NEAR TRENTON, NE 
6831500 FRENCHMAN CREEK NEAR IMPERIAL, NE 
6835000 STINKING WATER CREEK NEAR PALISADE, NE 
6835100 BOBTAIL CREEK NEAR PALISADE, NE 
6836000 BLACKWOOD CREEK NEAR CULBERTSON, NE 
6836500 DRIFTWOOD CREEK NEAR MCCOOK, NE 
6838200 COON CREEK AT INDIANOLA, NE 
6838550 DRY CREEK AT BARTLEY, NE 
6839200 ELKHORN CANYON NEAR MAYWOOD, NE 
6839600 FRAZIER CREEK NEAR MAYWOOD, NE 
6839850 FOX CREEK NORTH OF CURTIS, NE 
6839900 FOX CREEK ABOVE CUT CANYON NR CURTIS, NE 
6839950 CUT CANYON NEAR CURTIS, NE 
6840000 FOX CREEK AT CURTIS, NE 
6840500 DRY CREEK NEAR CURTIS, NE 
6841000 MEDICINE CREEK ABOVE HARRY STRUNK LAKE, NE 
6841500 MITCHELL CREEK ABOVE HARRY STRUNK LAKE, NE 
6844700 SF SAPPA C NR BREWSTER, KS 
6844800 SF SAPPA C TR NR GOODLAND, KS 
6844900 SF SAPPA C NR ACHILLES, KS 
6845000 SAPPA C NR OBERLIN, KS 
6845100 LONG BRANCH DRAW NR NORCATUR, KS 
6846200 BEAVER C TR NR LUDELL, KS 
6846500 BEAVER C AT CEDAR BLUFFS, KS 
6847600 PRAIRIE DOG C TR AT COLBY, KS 
6847900 PRAIRIE DOG C AB KEITH SEBELIUS LAKE, KS 
6858500 NF SMOKY HILL R NR MCALLASTER, KS 
6859500 LADDER C BL CHALK C NR SCOTT CITY, KS 
6860000 SMOKY HILL R AT ELKADER, KS 
6860300 SB HACKBERRY C NR ORION, KS 
6860500 HACKBERRY C NR GOVE, KS 
7093775 BADGER CREEK, LOWER STATION, NE AR HOWARD, CO 
7095000 GRAPE CREEK NEAR WESTCLIFFE, CO 
7096500 FOURMILE CREEK NEAR CANON CITY, CO 
7099060 BEAVER CREEK ABOVE HIGHWAY 115 NEAR PENROSE, CO 
7099080 RED CREEK BELOW SULLIVAN PARK AT FORT CARSON, CO 
7099215 TURKEY CREEK NEAR FOUNTAIN, CO 
7099220 LITTLE TURKEY CREEK NEAR FOUNTAIN, CO 
7099230 TURKEY CREEK AB TELLER RES NEAR STONE CITY, CO 
7103700 FOUNTAIN CREEK NEAR COLORADO SPRINGS, CO 
7103703 CAMP CREEK AT GARDEN OF THE GODS, CO 
7104000 MONUMENT CREEK AT PALMER LAKE, CO 
7104050 N. ROCKRIMMON CR ABV DELMONICO DR. AT CO SPRGS, CO 
7105000 BEAR CREEK NEAR COLORADO SPRINGS, CO 
7105490 CHEYENNE CREEK AT EVANS AVE AT COLORADO SPRINGS, CO
7105900 JIMMY CAMP CREEK AT FOUNTAIN, CO 
7105920 L FOUNTAIN C AB KEATON RE, NR FORT CARSON, CO 
7105940 LITTLE FOUNTAIN CREEK NEAR FOUNTAIN, CO 
7105945 ROCK CREEK ABOVE FORT CARSON RESERVATION, CO 
7106500 FOUNTAIN CREEK AT PUEBLO, CO 
7107500 ST. CHARLES RIVER AT BURNT MILL, CO 
7108900 ST. CHARLES RIVER AT VINELAND, CO 
7111000 HUERFANO R AT MANZANARES XING, NR REDWING, CO 
7112500 HUERFANO RIVER AT BADITO, CO 
7114000 CUCHARAS RIVER AT BOYD RANCH, NE AR LA VETA, CO 
7116000 HUERFANO R BL HUERF VALY DAM NR UNDERCLIFFE, CO 
7118000 APISHAPA RIVER NEAR AGUILAR, CO 
7120620 BIG ARROYO NEAR THATCHER, CO 
7121500 TIMPAS CREEK AT MOUTH NEAR SWINK, CO 
7122400 CROOKED ARROYO NEAR SWINK, CO 
7123675 HORSE CREEK NEAR LAS ANIMAS, CO 
7124300 LONG CANYON CREEK NEAR MADRID, CO 
7124500 PURGATOIRE RIVER AT TRINIDAD, CO 
7125100 FRIJOLE CREEK NEAR ALFALFA, CO 
7125500 SAN FRANCISCO CREEK NEAR ALFALFA, CO 
7126100 LUNING ARROYO NEAR MODEL, CO 
7126140 VAN BREMER ARROYO NEAR TYRONE, CO 
7126200 VAN BREMER ARROYO NEAR MODEL, CO 
7126325 TAYLOR ARROYO BL ROCK CROSSING, NR THATCHER, CO 
7126390 LOCKWOOD CANYON CREEK NEAR THATCHER, CO 
7126415 RED ROCK CANYON CREEK AT MOUTH NR THATCHER, CO 
7126470 CHACUACO CREEK AT MOUTH NEAR TIMPAS, CO 
7126480 BENT CANYON CREEK AT MOUTH NEAR TIMPAS, CO 
7126500 PURGATOIRE RIVER AT NINEMILE DAM, NR HIGBEE, CO 
7133200 CLAY CREEK TRIBUTARY NEAR DEORA, CO 
7134100 BIG SANDY CREEK NEAR LAMAR, CO 
7134990 WILD HORSE CREEK ABOVE HOLLY, CO 
7135000 TWO BUTTE CREEK NEAR HOLLY, CO 
7138600 WHITE WOMAN C TR NR SELKIRK, KS 
7138650 WHITE WOMAN C NR LEOTI, KS 
7138800 LION C TR NR MODOC, KS 
7140600 PAWNEE R TR NR KALVESTA, KS 
7141400 SF WALNUT CR TR NR DIGHTON, KS 
7153500 DRY CIMARRON R NR GUY, NM  
7154400 CARRIZOZO CREEK NEAR KENTON, OK 
7154500 CIMARRON RIVER NEAR KENTON, OK 
7154650 TESESQUITE CREEK NEAR KENTON, OK 
7155100 COLD SPRINGS CREEK NEAR WHEELESS, OK 
7155590 CIMARRON R NR ELKHART, KS 
7155900 NF CIMARRON R TR NR ELKHART, KS 
7156000 NF CIMARRON R TR NR RICHFIELD, KS 
7156010 NF CIMARRON R AT RICHFIELD, KS 
7156100 SAND ARROYO C NR JOHNSON, KS 
7156220 BEAR C NR JOHNSON, KS 
7156600 CIMARRON R TR NR MOSCOW, KS 
7156700 CIMARRON R TR NR SATANTA, KS 
7157100 CROOKED C NR COPELAND, KS 
7157400 CROOKED C TR AT MEADE, KS 
7157500 CROOKED C NR ENGLEWOOD, KS 
7157550 WEST FORK CREEK NEAR KNOWLES, OK 
7199000 CANADIAN RIVER NEAR HEBRON, NM 
7201000 RATON CREEK AT RATON, NM 
7201200 CHICORICA CR TRIB NR RATON, NM 
7201450 GREEN MTN ARROYO NR RATON, NM 
7202000 CHICORICA CREEK NEAR HEBRON, NM 
7203000 VERMEJO RIVER NEAR DAWSON, NM 
7203600 RIO DEL PLANO TRIB NR TAYLOR SPGS, NM 
7204000 MORENO CREEK AT EAGLE NEST, NM
7204500 CIENEGUILLA CR NR EAGLE NEST, NM 
7205000 SIXMILE CREEK NEAR EAGLE NEST, NM 
7206400 CLEAR C NR UTE PARK, NM 
7207500 PONIL CREEK NEAR CIMARRON, NM 
7208500 RAYADO CREEK NEAR CIMARRON, NM 
7211500 CANADIAN RIVER NEAR TAYLOR SPRINGS, NM 
7213700 CANADIAN RIVER TRIB NR MILLS, NM 
7214800 RIO LA CASA NR CLEVELAND, NM 
7220000 SAPELLO RIVER AT SAPELLO, NM 
7220900 DOG CREEK NEAR SHOEMAKER, NM 
7221600 LAGARTIJA CREEK TRIB NR SANCHEZ, NM 
7222300 TREMENTINA CREEK AT TREMENTINA, NM 
7222500 CONCHAS RIVER AT VARIADERO, NM 
7222800 GARITA CR TRIB NR VARIADERO, NM 
7225300 BLUEWATER CREEK NR TUCUMCARI, NM 
7225500 UTE CREEK NEAR GLADSTONE, NM 
7226200 BUEYEROS CREEK AT BUEYEROS, NM 
7226500 UTE CREEK NEAR LOGAN, NM 
7227100 REVUELTO CREEK NEAR LOGAN, NM 
7227150 ARROYO DEL PUERTO NR ENDEE, NM 
7227200 TRAMPEROS CREEK NEAR STEAD, NM 
7227295 SANDY ARROYO TRIB NEAR CLAYTON, NM 
7227300 SAND DRAW NEAR CLAYTON, NM 
7227920 DIXON CK NR BORGER, TX 
7232500 BEAVER RIVER NEAR GUYMON, OK 
7232550 SOUTH FORK TRIB NEAR GUYMON, OK 
7232650 AQUA FRIO CREEK NEAR FELT, OK 
7232900 COLDWATER CREEK NEAR GUYMON, OK 
7233500 PALO DURO CK NR SPEARMAN, TX
7233850 SHARP CREEK TRIB NEAR TURPIN, OK 
7234050 NORTH FORK CLEAR CREEK TRIB NR BALKO, OK 
7234100 CLEAR CREEK NEAR ELMWOOD, OK 
7301410 SWEETWATER CK NR KELTON, TX
RACRSTCO RATON CREEK ABOVE STARKVILLE, CO