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Reach-scale monitoring and modeling of rivers--Expanding hydraulic data collection beyond the cross section

December 2, 2019

For over 125 years, the U.S. Geological Survey streamgage network has provided important
hydrologic information about rivers and streams throughout the Nation. Traditional streamgage
methods provide reliable stage and streamflow data but typically only monitor stage at a single location in a river and require frequent calibration streamflow measurements. Direct measurements are not always feasible, therefore improved sensors and methods
are being deployed at gages to better document streamflow conditions between measurements. The technology and techniques of reach-scale monitoring allow the U.S. Geological Survey to collect more data across the full range of streamflow without requiring that a hydrographer be present. The U.S. Geological Survey Arizona Water Science Center’s reach-scale monitoring program will enhance the Arizona streamgage network with more accurate streamflow measurements and provide more extensive streamflow records and geomorphological
datasets for our agency partners and the public. Reach-scale monitoring installations and techniques are applicable to streams of the western United States and likely throughout the Nation.