Regions

Utah

States L2 Landing Page Tabs

The Southwest Region ranges from the Colorado Rockies to the Gulf Coast and the Western Deserts to the Great Plains. The Southwest Region conducts multi- and interdisciplinary research and monitoring in locations across the Region, the United States, around the world, and across our solar system.

News

Drill rig to collect sediment samples on Lake Powell.
November 20, 2018

Reporters: RSVP to Visit Coring Site on Lake Powell

photo of grasslands surrounding Winnemucca, Nevada
June 12, 2018

The advent of remote sensing was a boon to the ancient science of phenology.

Satellite data offered a global view of nature’s seasonal life cycles that historical tabulators of budding trees and buzzing bees could scarcely imagine.

From the start, however, remotely sensed phenology has come with caveats.

Bear Lake to Receive Water Quality and Weather Monitoring Equipment
March 30, 2018

Bear Lake will house water quality and weather monitoring equipment that will provide near real-time information to the public and water managers beginning in early April and continuing through 2022.

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Simulated reduction in flow in the Malad River as a result of groundwater pumping. 
Date Published: October 16, 2018
Status: Active

Groundwater Models

Groundwater is an important resource, but availability, quality, and sustainability during growth have become major concerns. Groundwater models are numerical representations that help hydrologists better understand groundwater systems. These models also provide tools for water managers. The Utah Water Science Center has groundwater models for many seperate areas in Utah as well as two...

Attribution of storm-weighted potential contaminant hazard ranks to sampling locations
Date Published: August 30, 2018
Status: Active

Geospatial Analyses and Applications — Salt Lake City, Utah

About the Laboratory

Scientists within the Geospatial Analyses and Applications Team develop and apply geospatial analytical methods to answer broad-scale questions about source-sink and cause-effect relationships between contaminants and vulnerable communities. Multivariate statistics are used to identify connections between landscape gradients and observational data....

Making an ADCP measurement on the Bear River below Alexander Reservoir, Idaho
Date Published: August 10, 2018
Status: Active

National Streamflow Information Program

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) operates and maintains a national streamgage network of about 8,000 streamgages (2018) to provide long-term, accurate, and unbiased streamflow information (often called discharge) to meet the multiple needs of many diverse users. Streamflow information is fundamental to national and local economic well-being, protection of life and property, and efficient and...

Contacts: Cory Angeroth
Ross Basin, Colorado
Date Published: August 7, 2018
Status: Completed

Upper Arkansas River Basin Toxics and Synoptic Studies

From 1986 to 2001, the Upper Arkansas Toxics Project focused on metal transport in streams affected by mining. Studies were conducted to quantify the physical, chemical, and biological processes affecting trace metal fate and transport.

Collecting sediment traps on Lake Powell that were deployed after Gold King Mine release.
Date Published: July 29, 2018
Status: Active

Lake Powell Coring

In response to the August 5, 2015, Gold King Mine Spill from the Bonita Peak Mining District that resulted in the release of three-million gallons of mine-impacted waters, the Utah Water Science Center, in partnership with the Utah Division of Water Quality, National Park Service, and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, is planning to core the San Juan and Colorado River deltas in multiple locations...

Contacts: Scott Hynek
Map of the Colorado Plateau, including the San Juan River pilot study area.
Date Published: July 28, 2018
Status: Active

Colorado Plateau Regional Groundwater Availability

Study goals

This project seeks to quantify the status of groundwater as an integrated resource with surface water in the arid and semiarid region of the Colorado Plateau principal aquifer system. Surface-water resources that originate in this region are over allocated and serve 35 million people, 4.5 million acres of farmland, and are used to generate 12 billion...

Salt Wash in the San Rafael Swell with white surface salts
Date Published: July 25, 2018
Status: Active

Salinity

Studies of Sources and Transport of Dissolved Solids (Salt) in the Colorado River Basin using the Spatially Referenced Regressions on Watershed Attributes (SPARROW) Model

The Upper Colorado River Basin (UCRB) encompasses about 112,000 mi2 and discharges more than 6 million tons of dissolved solids (salt) annually to the lower Colorado River Basin. About 45 percent of this...

Air quality and energy development in the southwestern US
Date Published: July 16, 2018
Status: Active

Air quality and energy development in the southwestern U.S.- Sasha Reed

We are looking for a student to join our multi-disciplinary and multi-institution team exploring the relationships between energy development and air quality in the southwestern U.S. This research provides an exceptional opportunity for students to explore the complexities of land use and ecosystem function, as well as experience the diverse work environments found within the federal...

Sand Hollow Reservoir in early morning light
Date Published: June 20, 2018
Status: Active

Managed Aquifer Recharge

Sand Hollow Reservoir in Washington County, Utah, was completed in March 2002 and is operated for both surface-water storage and managed aquifer recharge via infiltration from surface basin spreading to the underlying Navajo Sandstone. From 2002 through 2014, about 216,000 acre-feet were diverted from the Virgin River to Sand Hollow Reservoir, and about 127,000 acre-feet of water seeped...

Contacts: Tom Marston
Technicians work on water-quality instrumentation deployed on platforms on Bear Lake, Utah
Date Published: May 30, 2018
Status: Active

Bear Lake Water Quality

Bear Lake, located approximately 50 kilometers (km) northeast of Logan, Utah, straddles the Utah-Idaho border and is nestled in a graben valley between the Bear Lake Plateau on the east and the Bear River Range on the west (Reheis and others, 2009) (fig. 1). Its calcium carbonate type water is a brilliant green-blue color that, in combination with sandy beaches and easy access, draws thousands...

Contacts: Ryan Rowland
Outside of new shelter for gage on Little Cottonwood Ck at Jordan R
Date Published: May 10, 2018
Status: Active

What is a streamgage?

Information on the flow of rivers and streams is a vital national asset that safeguuards lives, protects property, and ensures adequate water supplies for the future. The USGS operates a network of more than 9,000 streamgages nationwide with more than 150 in Utah, but how does a streamgage work? Dee Lurry of the Texas Water Science Center answers that question.

Contacts: Cory Angeroth
Screenshot of the Land Treatment Exploration Tool with proposed treatment drawn on screen.
Date Published: May 10, 2018
Status: Active

Land Treatment Exploration Tool

The Land Treatment ExplorationTool provides a practical resource for managers who are planning restoration and rehabilitation actions on public lands. The tool generates a variety of spatial products while being user friendly for all levels of GIS expertise, even to those with little or no experience.

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Web Application
/data-tools/land-treatment-exploration-tool

Land Treatment Exploration Tool

Screenshot of the Land Treatment Exploration Tool with proposed treatment drawn on screen.
May 3, 2018

The Land Treatment Exploration Tool is designed for resource managers to use when planning land treatments. The tool provides useful summaries of environmental characteristics of planned treatment areas and facilitates adaptive management practices by comparing those characteristics to other similar treatments within a specified distance or area of interest.  Provisional Software.

GIS Data
/data-tools/national-map

The National Map

National Map Logo
February 22, 2018

The National Map is a collaborative effort among the USGS and other Federal, State, and local partners to improve and deliver topographic information for the Nation. It has many uses ranging from recreation to scientific analysis to emergency response. The National Map is easily accessible for display on the Web, as products and services, and as downloadable data.

Science Datasets
/data-tools/calibration-datasets-and-model-archive-summaries-regression-models-developed-estimate

Calibration datasets and model archive summaries for regression models developed to estimate metal concentrations at nine sites on the Animas and San Juan Rivers, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://doi.org/10.5066

USGS
January 1, 2018

This data release supports the following publication: Mast, M. A., 2018, Estimating metal concentrations with regression analysis and water-quality surrogates at nine sites on the Animas and San Juan Rivers, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2018-5116. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the U. S. Environmental Protection Ag

Water
/data-tools/national-water-information-system-web-interface-nwisweb-0

National Water Information System web interface (NWISweb)

Application screenshot thumbnail
September 1, 2017

The National Water Information System (NWIS) web application provides access to real-time and historical surface-water, groundwater, water-quality, and water-use data collected at approximately 1.5 million sites across all 50 states.

Web Application
/data-tools/national-water-information-system-nwis-mapper

National Water Information System (NWIS) Mapper

NWIS Mapper screenshot
August 30, 2017

The NWIS mapper provides access to over 1.5 million sites contained in the USGS National Water Information System (NWIS), including sites where current and historical surface-water, groundwater, springs, and atmospheric data has been collected. Users can search by site type, data type, site number, or place.

Science Datasets
/data-tools/catchment-flowline-network-and-selected-model-inputs-enhanced-and-updated-spatially

Catchment-flowline network and selected model inputs for an enhanced and updated spatially referenced statistical assessment of dissolved-solids load sources and transport in streams of the Upper Colorado River Basin

Screen shot of the data release for SIR 2017-5009
March 7, 2017

This USGS data release consists of the synthetic stream network and associated catchments used to develop spatially referenced regressions on watershed attributes (SPARROW) model of dissolved-solids sources and transport in the Upper Colorado River Basin as well as geology and selected Basin Characterization Model (BCM) data used as input to the model.

Science Datasets
/data-tools/usgs-southwest-repeat-photography-collection-kanab-creek-southern-utah-and-northern

USGS Southwest Repeat Photography Collection: Kanab Creek, southern Utah and northern Arizona, 1872-2010

Image of the contents of a repeat photo stake folder.
January 1, 2017

The USGS Southwest Repeat Photography Collection (‘Collection’), formerly named the Desert Laboratory Repeat Photography Collection, is now housed by the Southwest Biological Science Center (SBSC) in Flagstaff, Arizona. It contains images from the late 1800s to mid-2000s, and was assembled over decades by now retired USGS scientists Drs. Robert H. Webb and Raymond M. Turner. There are 8

Science Datasets
/data-tools/sagebrush-mineral-resource-assessment-data-sources

Sagebrush Mineral Resource Assessment Data Sources

Sagebrush MRA map
October 26, 2016

List of USGS information resources used in carrying out the Sagebrush Mineral Resource Assessment in 2016. Portal to an interactive map and OGC WMS service.

GIS Data
/data-tools/structures-data

Structures Data

Structure datasets for the nation from The National Map
April 20, 2016

USGS data portray selected structures data, including the location and characteristics of manmade facilities. Characteristics consist of a structure's physical form (footprint), function, name, location, and detailed information about the structure. The types of structures collected are largely determined by the needs of the disaster planning and response and homeland security organizations.

GIS Data
/data-tools/boundaries

Boundaries Data

Boundaries datasets for the nation from The National Map.
April 19, 2016

Boundaries data or governmental units represent major civil areas including states, counties, Federal, and Native American lands, and incorporated places such as cities and towns.

GIS Data
/data-tools/hydrography-data

Hydrography Data

Illustration related to the the river corridor
April 19, 2016

The National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) and Watershed Boundary Dataset (WBD) are used to portray surface water on The National Map.

GIS Data
/data-tools/united-states-interagency-elevation-inventory-usiei

The United States Interagency Elevation Inventory (USIEI)

3D Lidar Point Cloud Image of San Francisco Bay and Golden Gate Bridge
April 19, 2016

The USIEI is a comprehensive, nationwide listing of known high-accuracy topographic and bathymetric data for the United States and its territories. The project is a collaborative effort of the USGS and NOAA with contributions from other federal agencies. The inventory supports the 3D Elevation Program and the Integrated Ocean and Coastal Mapping effort. This resource is updated in Spring and Fall.

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Topoview logo for USGS interactive map viewer
February 23, 2018

Topographic maps are a signature product of the USGS. They were essential for integrating and analyzing place-based information, and were widely used by receationalists. After 125-year legacy of topographic mapping (1884-2009), the USGS embarked on an innovative future of integrating historical maps with computer-generated maps from a national geographical information system (GIS) database.

Digital Elevation Model in the Atchafalaya Basin, LA
April 19, 2016

The 3DEP products and services available through The National Map consist of standard digital elevation models (DEMs) at various horizontal resolutions, elevation source and associated datasets, an elevation point query service and bulk point query service. All 3DEP products are available, free of charge and without use restrictions.

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Year Published: 2017

3D ground‐motion simulations of Mw 7 earthquakes on the Salt Lake City segment of the Wasatch fault zone: Variability of long‐period (T≥1  s) ground motions and sensitivity to kinematic rupture parameters

We examine the variability of long‐period (T≥1  s) earthquake ground motions from 3D simulations of Mw 7 earthquakes on the Salt Lake City segment of the Wasatch fault zone, Utah, from a set of 96 rupture models with varying slip distributions, rupture speeds, slip velocities, and hypocenter locations. Earthquake ruptures were prescribed...

Moschetti, Morgan P.; Hartzell, Stephen; Ramirez-Guzman, Leonardo; Frankel, Arthur; Angster, Stephen J.; Stephenson, William J.
Moschetti, M. P., Hartzell, S., Ramírez‐Guzmán, L., Frankel, A. D., Angster, S. J., & Stephenson, W. J. (2017). 3D Ground‐Motion Simulations of Mw 7 Earthquakes on the Salt Lake City Segment of the Wasatch Fault Zone: Variability of Long‐Period (T≥ 1 s) Ground Motions and Sensitivity to Kinematic Rupture Parameters. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America.

Year Published: 2017

High-resolution seismic profiling reveals faulting associated with the 1934 Ms 6.6 Hansel Valley earthquake (Utah, USA)

The 1934 Ms 6.6 Hansel Valley, Utah, earthquake produced an 8-km-long by 3-km-wide zone of north-south−trending surface deformation in an extensional basin within the easternmost Basin and Range Province. Less than 0.5 m of purely vertical displacement was measured at the surface, although seismologic data suggest mostly strike-slip faulting at...

Bruno, Pier Paolo G.; Duross, Christopher; Kokkalas, Sotirios
Bruno, P.P.G., DuRoss, C.B., and Kokkalas, S., 2017, High-resolution seismic profiling reveals faulting associated with the 1934 Ms 6.6 Hansel Valley earthquake (Utah, USA), Geological Society of America Bulletin, 14 p., doi: 10.1130/B31516.1.

Year Published: 2017

Holocene surface-faulting earthquakes at the Spring Lake and North Creek Sites on the Wasatch Fault Zone: Evidence for complex rupture of the Nephi Segment

The Nephi segment of the Wasatch fault zone (WFZ) comprises two fault strands, the northern and southern strands, which have evidence of recurrent late Holocene surface-faulting earthquakes. We excavated paleoseismic trenches across these strands to refine and expand their Holocene earthquake chronologies; improve estimates of earthquake...

Duross, Christopher; Hylland, Michael D.; Hiscock, Adam; Personius, Stephen; Briggs, Richard; Gold, Ryan D.; Beukelman, Gregg; McDonald, Geg N; Erickson, Ben; McKean, Adam; Angster, Steve; King, Roselyn; Crone, Anthony J.; Mahan, Shannon A.
DuRoss, C.B., Hylland, M.D., Hiscock, A.I., Personius, S.F., Briggs, R.W., Gold, R.D., Beukelman, G.S., McDonald, G.N., Erickson, B.A., McKean, A.P., Angster, S.J., King. R., Crone, A.J., and Mahan, S.A., 2017, Holocene Surface-Faulting Earthquakes at the Spring Lake and North Creek Sites on the Wasatch Fault Zone: Evidence for Complex Rupture of the Nephi Segment—Paleoseismology of Utah, Volume 28: Utah Geological Survey Special Study 159, 119 p, 4 plates.

Year Published: 2017

The history of late holocene surface-faulting earthquakes on the central segments of the Wasatch fault zone, Utah

The Wasatch fault (WFZ)—Utah’s longest and most active normal fault—forms a prominent eastern boundary to the Basin and Range Province in northern Utah. To provide paleoseismic data for a Wasatch Front regional earthquake forecast, we synthesized paleoseismic data to define the timing and displacements of late Holocene surface-faulting earthquakes...

Duross, Christopher; Personius, Stephen; Olig, Susan S; Crone, Anthony J.; Hylland, Michael D.; Lund, William R; Schwartz, David P.
DuRoss, C.B., Personius, S.F., Olig, S.S., Crone, A.J., Hylland, M.D., Lund, W.R., and Schwartz, D.P., 2017, The History of Late Holocene Surface-Faulting Earthquakes on the Central Segments of the Wasatch fault zone, Utah, in Lund, W.R., Emerman, S.H., Wang, W. and Zanazzi, A., editors, Geology and Resources of the Wasatch: Back to Front, Utah Geological Association Publication 46, 51 p.

Year Published: 2016

Fault segmentation: New concepts from the Wasatch Fault Zone, Utah, USA

The question of whether structural segment boundaries along multisegment normal faults such as the Wasatch fault zone (WFZ) act as persistent barriers to rupture is critical to seismic hazard analyses. We synthesized late Holocene paleoseismic data from 20 trench sites along the central WFZ to evaluate earthquake rupture length and fault...

Duross, Christopher; Personius, Stephen F.; Crone, Anthony J.; Olig, Susan S.; Hylland, Michael D.; Lund, William R.; Schwartz, David P.

Year Published: 2016

Geology and mineral resources of the Southwestern and South-Central Wyoming Sagebrush Focal Area, Wyoming, and the Bear River Watershed Sagebrush Focal Area, Wyoming and Utah: Chapter E in Mineral resources of the Sagebrush Focal Areas of Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming

SummaryThe U.S. Department of the Interior has proposed to withdraw approximately 10 million acres of Federal lands from mineral entry (subject to valid existing rights) from 12 million acres of lands defined as Sagebrush Focal Areas (SFAs) in Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming (for further discussion on the lands involved see...

Wilson, Anna B.; Hayes, Timothy S.; Benson, Mary Ellen; Yager, Douglas B.; Anderson, Eric D.; Bleiwas, Donald I.; DeAngelo, Jacob; Dicken, Connie L.; Drake, Ronald M.; Fernette, Gregory L.; Giles, Stuart A.; Glen, Jonathan M. G.; Haacke, Jon E.; Horton, John D.; Parks, Heather L.; Rockwell, Barnaby W.; Williams, Colin F.
Wilson, A.B., Hayes, T.S., Benson, M.E., Yager, D.B., Anderson, E.D., Bleiwas, D.I., DeAngelo, J., Dicken, C.L., Drake, R.M., II, Fernette, G.L., Giles, S.A., Glen, J.M.G., Haacke, J.E., Horton, J.D., Parks, H.L., Rockwell, B.W., and Williams, C.F., 2016, Geology and mineral resources of the Southwestern and South-Central Wyoming Sagebrush Focal Area, Wyoming, and the Bear River Watershed Sagebrush Focal Area, Wyoming and Utah, (ver. 1.1, October 26, 2016): U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2016–5089–E, 128 p., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/sir20165089E.

Year Published: 2016

Historical files from Federal Government mineral exploration-assistance programs, 1950 to 1974

The Defense Minerals Administration (DMA), Defense Minerals Exploration Administration (DMEA), and Office of Minerals Exploration (OME) mineral exploration programs were active over the period 1950–1974. Under these programs, the Federal Government contributed financial assistance in the exploration for certain strategic and critical minerals. The...

Frank, David G.
Frank, D.G., 2016, Historical files from Federal Government mineral exploration-assistance programs, 1950 to 1974: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 1004, http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/ds1004.

Year Published: 2016

Earthquake forecast for the Wasatch Front region of the Intermountain West

The Working Group on Utah Earthquake Probabilities has assessed the probability of large earthquakes in the Wasatch Front region. There is a 43 percent probability of one or more magnitude 6.75 or greater earthquakes and a 57 percent probability of one or more magnitude 6.0 or greater earthquakes in the region in the next 50 years. These...

DuRoss, Christopher B.
DuRoss, C.B., 2016, Earthquake forecast for the Wasatch Front region of the Intermountain West: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2016–3019, 2 p., http://doi.dx.org/10.3133/fs20163019.

Year Published: 2016

Earthquake probabilities for the Wassatch front region in Utah, Idaho, and Wyoming

In a letter to The Salt Lake Daily Tribune in September 1883, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) geologist G.K. Gilbert warned local residents about the implications of observable fault scarps along the western base of the Wasatch Range. The scarps were evidence that large surface-rupturing earthquakes had occurred in the past and more would likely...

Wong, Ivan G.; Lund, William R.; Duross, Christopher; Thomas, Patricia; Arabasz, Walter; Crone, Anthony J.; Hylland, Michael D.; Luco, Nicolas; Olig, Susan S.; Pechmann, James C.; Personius, Stephen; Petersen, Mark D.; Schwartz, David P.; Smith, Robert B.; Rowman, Steve

Year Published: 2015

Analysis and selection of magnitude relations for the Working Group on Utah Earthquake Probabilities

Prior to calculating time-independent and -dependent earthquake probabilities for faults in the Wasatch Front region, the Working Group on Utah Earthquake Probabilities (WGUEP) updated a seismic-source model for the region (Wong and others, 2014) and evaluated 19 historical regressions on earthquake magnitude (M). These regressions relate M to...

Duross, Christopher; Olig, Susan; Schwartz, David
DuRoss, C.B., Olig, S.S., and Schwartz, D.P., 2015, Analysis and selection of magnitude relations for the Working Group on Utah Earthquake Probabilities, extended abstract in Proceedings Volume, Basin and Range Province Seismic Hazards Summit III, W.R. Lund (Editor), Utah Geological Survey Miscellaneous Publication 15-5, 4 pp., available at http://ugspub.nr.utah.gov/publications/misc_pubs/mp-15-5/mp-15-5_technical_sessions1-2.pdf

Year Published: 2014

Late quaternary paleoseismology of the west valley fault zone: Insights from the Baileys Lake trench site

Hylland, Michael D.; DuRoss, Christopher B.; McDonald, Greg N.; Olig, Susan S.; Oviatt, Charles G.; Mahan, Shannon; Crone, Anthony J.; Personius, Stephen F.

Year Published: 2014

Holocene and latest Pleistocene paleoseismology of the Salt Lake City segment of the Wasatch Fault Zone, Utah, at the Penrose Drive Trench Site

The Salt Lake City segment (SLCS) of the Wasatch fault zone (WFZ) and the West Valley fault zone (WVFZ) compromise Holocene-active normal faults that bound a large intrabasin graben in northern Salt Lake Valley and have evidence of recurrent, large-magnitude (M ~6-7) surface-faulting earthquakes. However, at the time of this investigation,...

DuRoss, Christopher B.; Hylland, Michael D.; McDonald, Greg N.; Crone, Anthony J.; Personius, Stephen F.; Gold, Ryan D.; Mahan, Shannon
Holocene and latest Pleistocene paleoseismology of the Salt Lake City segment of the Wasatch Fault Zone, Utah, at the Penrose Drive Trench Site; 2014; State/Local Government Series; 149; State/Local Government Series; Evaluating surface faulting chronologies of Graben-Bounding Faults in Salt Lake Valley, Utah: new paleoseismic data from the Salt Lake City segment of the Wasatch Fault Zone and the West Valley Fault Zone; DuRoss, Christopher B.; Hylland, Michael D.; McDonald, Greg N.; Crone, Anthony J.; Personius, Stephen F.; Gold, Ryan D.; Mahan, Shannon A.

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Image from an application that navigates users through USGS National Oil and Gas Assessment Provinces
November 14, 2018

National Oil and Gas Assessment Provinces

This is a graphic from the USGS National Oil and Gas Assessment Explorer application, which allows user to drill into 70 oil and gas assessment provinces throughout the United States.

A RestoreNet garden with plots covered by white cloth.
August 31, 2018

RestoreNet garden testing seedling establishment.

The RestoreNet gardens test seedlings of priority restoration species across the Southwest. This is a recently installed garden located in the juniper woodlands of the Colorado Plateau. The experiemental network will support land managers by providing insight into various restoration techniques, including testing seedlings vs seeds.

Technicians deploy water-quality instrumentation on Bear Lake platforms
May 17, 2018

Bear Lake QW Platforms

Technicians deploy water-quality instrumentation on Bear Lake platforms

NASA image of Bear Lake with beautiful swirls in blue water showing mixing
May 1, 2018

Bear Lake Mixing

NASA image of Bear Lake with beautiful swirls in blue water showing mixing

Attribution of storm-weighted potential contaminant hazard ranks to sampling locations
April 12, 2018

Attribution of storm-weighted potential contaminant hazard ranks

Geospatial Analyses and Applications — Salt Lake City, Utah. Attribution of storm-weighted potential contaminant hazard ranks to sampling locations in the Sediment-Bound Contaminant Resiliency and Response (SCoRR) network.

Lake Powell
December 31, 2017

Lake Powell

The USGS Utah Water Science Center and the Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center conducted a collaborative geophysical research effort within Lake Powell, UT-AZ to map the bathymetry of the lake and characterize shallow sediment deposition near the mouths of the San Juan and Colorado Rivers.

Close-up of dried, cracked soil with small plants trying to survive in this soil.
December 31, 2017

Dry, cracked soil (RAMPS)

Rangelands of the desert Southwest can be in a degraded condition and lacking perennial vegetation, which can lead to exposed soil and erosion. RAMPS is working to mitigate degradation by increasing 

...
Dry wash in San Rafael Desert with white surface salts
December 31, 2017

Dry wash in San Rafael Desert with white surface salts

Dry wash in San Rafael Desert with white surface salts. White efflorescent salts form on the soil surface as water evaporates from the soil leaving the salt at the surface. 

Salinity loads that originate from groundwater within the Upper Colorado River Basin have decreased from 1986-2011, according to

...
USGS scientists check breach on glass-calm Great Salt Lake in surreal light.
December 19, 2017

Great Salt Lake, USGS boat at work

USGS scientists check breach on glass-calm Great Salt Lake in surreal light.

Two researchers aligning a 2 meter by 2 meter PVC square for an experimental restoration plot within a fenced area.
July 31, 2017

Setting up experimental restoration plots.

Field crew install a Restoration Field Trial Network garden in the rangelands of Northern Arizona. Each garden in the network is examining seedlings and seeds in conjunction with restoration treatments to better

...
July 30, 2017

A Record of Change: Science and Elder Observations on the Navajo N.

A Record of Change—Science and Elder Observations on the Navajo Nation is a 25-minute documentary about collaborative studies using conventional physical sciences, combined with tribal elder observations to show that local knowledge and conventional science partnerships can effectively document ecosystem change and determine the resulting challenges to livelihoods. 

...
Satellite images showing landsat 7 and landsat 8 fire images on the western U.S.
June 29, 2017

Fires in the Western United States

On an average day during the fire season, multiple wildfires burn in the western United States. For example, 216 fires were active on July 7, 2017. Firefighters were battling 27 of these fires through ground and air support.

A few of the larger fires in early July were in Arizona, Washington, and Utah. As with many wildfires, 

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Drill rig to collect sediment samples on Lake Powell.
November 20, 2018

Reporters: RSVP to Visit Coring Site on Lake Powell

photo of grasslands surrounding Winnemucca, Nevada
June 12, 2018

The advent of remote sensing was a boon to the ancient science of phenology.

Satellite data offered a global view of nature’s seasonal life cycles that historical tabulators of budding trees and buzzing bees could scarcely imagine.

From the start, however, remotely sensed phenology has come with caveats.

Bear Lake to Receive Water Quality and Weather Monitoring Equipment
March 30, 2018

Bear Lake will house water quality and weather monitoring equipment that will provide near real-time information to the public and water managers beginning in early April and continuing through 2022.

Dry wash in San Rafael Desert with white surface salts
January 25, 2018

Salinity loads that originate from groundwater within the Upper Colorado River Basin have decreased from 1986-2011, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey study done in cooperation with the Colorado River Basin Salinity Control Program.

Prairie dog and SPV bait
December 13, 2017

About 70 percent of wild prairie dogs successfully ingested baits containing an oral sylvatic plague vaccine, or SPV, that were distributed throughout their habitats, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey study.

Lake Powell
December 12, 2017

Develop a new bathymetry map of Lake Powell, UT-AZ, and characterize shallow sediment deposition near the mouths of the San Juan and Colorado Rivers. Bathymetric data, acoustic backscatter imagery, and limited CHIRP sub-bottom data were collected by the USGS Utah Water Science Center (UTWSC) and Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center (WHCMSC) within Lake Powell, October - November, 2017.

A wildfire in a forest
September 7, 2017

A growing number of wildfire-burned areas throughout the western United States are expected to increase soil erosion rates within watersheds, causing more sediment to be present in downstream rivers and reservoirs, according to a new study by the U.S. Geological Survey.

Image: Burning Sagebrush
September 6, 2017

An examination of long-term data for lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management finds that land treatments in the southwestern United States are increasingly large, expensive and related to fire and invasive species control.

Image shows a geologic map of the Lower 48
August 21, 2017

A carbonatite here, a glacial moraine there, a zig-zagging fault or two, even a behemoth of a batholith. The geology of the 50 States is an enormous patchwork of varied forms, beautiful in their variance but challenging to present as a single map.

Looking northeast along the Bear River Duck Club Canal toward the Wellsville Mountains. 
April 6, 2017

A new report illustrates how groundwater pumping can affect the amount of water available in streams within the Malad-Lower Bear River Area in Utah. The product was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Utah Department of Natural Resources, Division of Water Rights.

View from Canyonlands Research Center
March 15, 2017

Arid and semiarid ecosystems are expected to experience significant changes in temperature and precipitation patterns, which may affect soil organisms in ways that cause surfaces to become lighter in color and thus reflect more sunlight, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey study.

Lake Mead
March 15, 2017

The Colorado River system provides about 35 million Americans with a portion of their water supply. It irrigates 5½ million acres of land in the West and provides water to tribes, parks, and wildlife. The system serves parts of seven States and Mexico—but reservoir levels have crept lower over the past several years, sparking questions about how much water remains and who will have access.

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