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Updated streamflow reconstructions for the Upper Colorado River Basin

January 1, 2006

Updated proxy reconstructions of water year (October–September) streamflow for four key gauges in the Upper Colorado River Basin were generated using an expanded tree ring network and longer calibration records than in previous efforts. Reconstructed gauges include the Green River at Green River, Utah; Colorado near Cisco, Utah; San Juan near Bluff, Utah; and Colorado at Lees Ferry, Arizona. The reconstructions explain 72–81% of the variance in the gauge records, and results are robust across several reconstruction approaches. Time series plots as well as results of cross‐spectral analysis indicate strong spatial coherence in runoff variations across the subbasins. The Lees Ferry reconstruction suggests a higher long‐term mean than previous reconstructions but strongly supports earlier findings that Colorado River allocations were based on one of the wettest periods in the past 5 centuries and that droughts more severe than any 20th to 21st century event occurred in the past.

Publication Year 2006
Title Updated streamflow reconstructions for the Upper Colorado River Basin
DOI 10.1029/2005WR004455
Authors Connie A. Woodhouse, Stephen T. Gray, David M. Meko
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Water Resources Research
Index ID 70031110
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse