Unified Interior Regions

Region 7: Upper Colorado Basin

Map of Region 7: Upper Colorado Basin

Map of Region 7:  Upper Colorado Basin

Map Showing USGS/DOI Unified Region 7 and parts of adjoining Regions

Regions L2 Landing Page Tabs

USGS Science Centers in Region 7-Upper Colorado Basin conduct a large number of cooperative and collaborative projects with other agencies and partners. A sampling of those projects are shown below on this web page.

Filter Total Items: 388
Date published: June 20, 2014
Status: Completed

Changes in Groundwater Levels in the Albuquerque Metropolitan Area

The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority (ABCWUA) has been investigating the effects of groundwater withdrawal on groundwater levels throughout the Albuquerque metropolitan area in the Middle Rio Grande Valley of central New Mexico (fig. 1). Historically, the water supply requirements of the Albuquerque metropolitan area were met...

Contacts: Andre Ritchie
Date published: June 5, 2014
Status: Active

Aquifer Compaction, Recovery, and Land-surface Elevation Change in the Albuquerque Basin

In many groundwater basins in the arid to semiarid western United States, permanent regional-scale land-surface elevation change has resulted from substantial drawdown of groundwater levels. By the end of 2008, groundwater drawdown from municipal pumping in the Albuquerque area had reached as much as 120 feet below predevelopment (~1950s) water levels. In 2014 the USGS, in cooperation with the...

Contacts: Andre Ritchie
Date published: January 1, 2014
Status: Active

DEFEnS DEbris and Flood Early warNing System

The Waldo Canyon wildfire burned more than 18,000 acres within a perimeter of more than 19,000 acres. In response to the July and August 2013 floods in the Waldo Canyon watershed and in collaboration with the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and the U.S. Geological Survey developed a warning system for Waldo Canyon associated with a wildfire burn scar, which are at risk to debris...

Contacts: John W Fulton
Date published: December 3, 2013
Status: Completed

South Platte Groundwater Analysis

The South Platte River and underlying alluvial aquifer form an important hydrologic resource in northeastern Colorado that provides water to population centers along the Front Range and to agricultural communities across the rural plains. Water is regulated based on seniority of water rights and delivered using a network of administration structures that includes ditches, reservoirs, wells,...

Contacts: Suzanne Paschke
Date published: March 1, 2013
Status: Active

SWOT - Surface Water and Ocean Topography

Satellite altimetry associated with the Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT) mission offers a solution for measuring (1) river stage and slope, (2) water surface area including mean channel width and (3) derivatives such as river discharge. The measurements can be used to track changes in these variables and provide an accounting of the Earth's fresh-water bodies from space at the reach...

Contacts: John W Fulton
Date published: December 31, 2012
Status: Completed

Lower Yampa Streamflow and Sediment Modeling

Water from the Yampa River basin continues to be sought for a number of municipal, industrial, and energy uses.  Water development in the Yampa River basin will alter the streamflow regime and, consequently, will lead to changes in the transport and storage of suspended and bedload sediment.  Changes in the Yampa River sediment budget could lead to changes in channel geometry, riparian...

Date published: December 31, 2012
Status: Completed

Numerical simulation of groundwater flow in the Lost Creek Designated Groundwater Basin, Weld and Adams Counties, Colorado

The Lost Creek Designated Ground Water Basin (LCDGWB) is an important alluvial aquifer for water supply in northeastern Colorado. Increased demand for withdrawals from the LCDGWB has led to a concern about the long-term sustainability of the basin’s ground-water resources.

A numerical ground-water flow model developed using an early version of MODFLOW exists for the LCDGWB. A review and...

Contacts: Suzanne Paschke
Date published: September 30, 2012
Status: Completed

Water budget and potential for underground storage in the Buena Vista-Salida Basin in Chaffee and parts of Fremont, Lake, and Saguache Counties, Colorado, 2009-2012

Population increases in the Upper Arkansas Headwaters Region, which includes Chaffee, Custer, Fremont, and Lake Counties, Colorado, are forecast to increase about 75 percent by 2030.  An annual deficit gap between supply and demand of about 5,950 acre-feet is anticipated.  Groundwater in the area is tributary to the Arkansas River but the effects of additional groundwater use are poorly...

Date published: September 30, 2012
Status: Completed

Use of multivariate associations among species for detecting changes in native plains fish community structure in Colorado

The Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) is responsible for monitoring the status of fishes in Colorado and currently seeks to establish a rigorous, efficient monitoring program for fishes that occur in stream habitats from the mountain-plains interface east to the Colorado state line. The primary goals of this program are to: 

  1. monitor the status of species of concern designated
  2. ...
Date published: June 25, 2012
Status: Active

Bandelier National Monument Postwildfire Flood Support

In the summer of 2011, the Las Conchas Fire burned 156,593 acres in the Jemez Mountains in northern NM including the upper watersheds of Frijoles and Capulin Canyons in Bandelier National Monument. The drastic removal of vegetation in the upper watersheds of these popular tourist destinations left them susceptible to dangerous and record breaking floods. As long as the threat of large post-...

Contacts: Anne C Tillery
Date published: June 1, 2012
Status: Active

South Platte Alluvial Aquifer Water-Level Monitoring

Reports indicate that groundwater levels are rising in parts of the South Platte alluvial aquifer.  The Colorado Division of  Water Resources and the Colorado Water Conservation Board are establishing a groundwater-level monitoring network in the South Platte basin.  The USGS National Water Quality Assessment Program (NAWQA) monitoring wells are uniquely located so as to be included in the...

Contacts: Suzanne Paschke
Date published: May 18, 2012
Status: Active

USGS Post-Wildfire Hydrologic Monitoring in New Mexico

USGS Gages in New Mexico Wildfire Areas
 

Contacts: Mark A Gunn

USGS Science Centers in Region 7-Upper Colorado Basin produce hundreds of USGS-series publications, journal papers, and books each year that are subject to rigorous review by USGS specialists. The publications shown below on this page are related to study areas and staff members of USGS Science Centers in Region 7 compiled from the USGS Publications Warehouse.

Filter Total Items: 5,333
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Year Published: 2020

Three-dimensional shape and structure of the Susitna basin, south-central Alaska, from geophysical data

We use gravity, magnetic, seismic reflection, well, and outcrop data to determine the three-dimensional shape and structural features of south-central Alaska’s Susitna basin. This basin is located within the Aleutian-Alaskan convergent margin region and is expected to show effects of regional subduction zone processes. Aeromagnetic data, when...

Shah, Anjana K.; Phillips, Jeffrey; Lewis, Kristen A.; Stanley, Richard G.; Haeussler, Peter; Potter, Christopher J.

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Year Published: 2020

Incipient bed-movement and flood-frequency analysis using hydrophones to estimate flushing flows on the upper Colorado River, Colorado, 2019

In 2019, the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Upper Colorado River Wild and Scenic Stakeholder Group, studied the magnitude and recurrence interval of streamflow (discharge) needed to initiate bed movement of gravel-sized and finer sediment in a segment of the Colorado River in Colorado to better understand sediment movement and its...

Kohn, Michael S.; Marineau, Mathieu D.; Hempel, Laura A.; McDonald, Richard R.
Kohn, M.S., Marineau, M.D., Hempel, L.A., and McDonald, R.R., 2020, Incipient bed-movement and flood-frequency analysis using hydrophones to estimate flushing flows on the upper Colorado River, Colorado, 2019: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2020–5069, 39 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20205069.

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Year Published: 2020

Calibration of the U.S. Geological Survey National Crustal Model

The U.S. Geological Survey National Crustal Model (NCM) is being developed to include spatially varying estimates of site response in seismic hazard assessments. Primary outputs of the NCM are continuous velocity and density profiles from the Earth’s surface to the mantle transition zone at 410-kilometer (km) depth for each location on a 1-km grid...

Boyd, Oliver S.
Boyd, O.S., 2020, Calibration of the U.S. Geological Survey National Crustal Model: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2020–1052, 23 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20201052.

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Year Published: 2020

Pulsed Mesozoic deformation in the Cordilleran hinterland and evolution of the Nevadaplano: Insights from the Pequop Mountains, NE Nevada

Mesozoic crustal shortening in the North American Cordillera’s hinterland was related to the construction of the Nevadaplano orogenic plateau. Petrologic and geochemical proxies in Cordilleran core complexes suggest substantial Late Cretaceous crustal thickening during plateau construction. In eastern Nevada, geobarometry from the Snake Range and...

Zuza, Andrew V; Thorman, Charles H.; Henry, Christopher D.; Levy, Drew A.; Dee, Seth; Long, Sean P.; Sandberg, Charles; Soignard, Emmanuel

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Year Published: 2020

Recording the aurora borealis (northern lights) at seismometers across Alaska

We examine three continuously recording data sets related to the aurora: all‐sky camera images, three‐component magnetometer data, and vertical‐component, broadband seismic data as part of the EarthScope project (2014 to present). Across Alaska there are six all‐sky cameras, 13 magnetometers, and >200">>200>200 ...

Tape, C.; Ringler, Adam T.; Hampton, D.L.

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Year Published: 2020

Assessment of water and proppant quantities associated with petroleum production from the Eagle Ford Group, Gulf Coast, Texas, 2019

Building on a geology-based assessment of undiscovered, technically recoverable petroleum resources in the Eagle Ford Group in south Texas, the U.S. Geological Survey has estimated the required water and proppant demands and formation water production volumes associated with possible future development of these petroleum resources. The results of...

Gianoutsos, Nicholas J.; Haines, Seth S.; Varela, Brian A.; Whidden, Katherine J.; Birdwell, Justin E.; Burke, Lauri A.; Drake, Ronald M.; Finn, Thomas M.; French, Katherine L.; Jenni, Karen E.; Kinney, Scott A.; Le, Phuong A.; Leathers-Miller, Heidi M.; Marra, Kristen R.; Mercier, Tracey J.; Paxton, Stanley T.; Pitman, Janet K.; Schenk, Christopher J.; Shaffer, Brian N.; Shorten, Chilisa M.; Tennyson, Marilyn E.; Woodall, Cheryl A.
Gianoutsos, N.J., Haines, S.S., Varela, B.A., Whidden, K.J., Birdwell, J.E., Burke, L.A., Drake, R.M, II, Finn, T.M., French, K.L., Jenni, K.E., Kinney, S.A., Le, P.A., Leathers-Miller, H.M., Marra, K.R., Mercier, T.J., Paxton, S.T., Pitman, J.K., Schenk, C.J., Shaffer, B.N., Shorten, C.M., Tennyson, M.E., and Woodall, C.A., 2020, Assessment of water and proppant quantities associated with petroleum production from the Eagle Ford Group, Gulf Coast, Texas, 2019 :U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2020–3037, 4 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/fs20203037.

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Year Published: 2020

Geological and thermal control of the hydrothermal system in northern Yellowstone Lake: Inferences from high resolution magnetic surveys

A multiscale magnetic survey of the northern basin of Yellowstone Lake was undertaken in 2016 as part of the Hydrothermal Dynamics of Yellowstone Lake Project (HD‐YLAKE)—a broad research effort to characterize the cause‐and‐effect relationships between geologic and environmental processes and hydrothermal activity on the lake floor. The magnetic...

Bouligand, Claire; Tivey, Maurice A.; Finn, Carol A.; Morgan, Lisa A; Shanks, W. C. Pat; Sohn, Robert A.

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Year Published: 2020

Comparison of storm runoff models for a small watershed in an urban metropolitan area, Albuquerque, New Mexico

In order to comply with a current U.S. Environmental Protection Agency watershed-based National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit, the City of Albuquerque required a better understanding of the rainfall-runoff processes in its small urban watersheds. That requirement prompted the initiation of the assessment of three existing watershed...

Shephard, Zachary M.; Douglas-Mankin, Kyle R.
Shephard, Z.M., and Douglas-Mankin, K.R., 2020, Comparison of storm runoff models for a small watershed in an urban metropolitan area, Albuquerque, New Mexico: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2020–5058, 30 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20205058.

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Year Published: 2020

Global quieting of high-frequency seismic noise due to COVID-19 pandemic lockdown measures

Human activity causes vibrations that propagate into the ground as high-frequency seismic waves. Measures to mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic caused widespread changes in human activity, leading to a months-long reduction in seismic noise of up to 50%. The 2020 seismic noise quiet period is the longest and most prominent global anthropogenic seismic...

Lecocq, Thomas; Hicks, Stephen; Van Noten, Koen; van Wijk, Kasper; Koelemeijer, Paula; De Plaen, Raphael S.M.; Massin, Frederick; Hillers, Gregor; Anthony, Robert E.; Apoloner, Maria-Theresia; Arroyo-Solorzano, Mario; Assink, Jelle D.; Buyukakpinar, Pinar; Cannata, Andrea; Cannavo, Flavio; Carrasco, Sebastian; Caudron, Corentin; Chaves, Esteban J.; Cornwell, David G.; Craig, David; den Ouden, Oliver F.C.; Diaz, Jordi; Donner, Stefanie; Evangelidis, Christos P.; Evers, Laslo; Fauville, Benoit; Fernandez, Gonzalo A.; Giannopoulos, Dimitrios; Gibbons, Steven J.; Girona, Tarsilo; Grecu, Bogdan; Grunberg, Marc; Hetenyi, Gyorgy; Horleston, Anna; Inza, Adolfo; Irving, Jessica C.E.; Jamalreyhani, Mohammadreza; Kafka, Alan; Koymans, Mathijs R.; Labedz, Celeste; Larose, Eric; Lindsey, Nathaniel J.; McKinnon, Mika; Megies, Tobias; Miller, Meghan S.; Minarik, William G.; Moresi, Louis; Marquez-Ramirez, Victor H.; Mollhoff, Martin; Nesbitt, Ian; Niyogi, Shankho; Ojeda, Javier; Oth, Adrien; Proud, Simon; Pulli, Jay; Retailleau, Lise; Rintamaki, Annukka E.; Satriano, Claudio; Savage, Martha K.; Shani-Kamiel, Shanhar; Sleeman, Reinoud; Sokos, Efthimios; Stammler, Klaus; Stott, Alexander E.; Subedi, Shiba; Sorensen, Mathilde B.; Taira, Taka'aki; Tapia, Mar; Turhan, Faith; van der Pluijm, Ben; Vanstone, Mark; Vernge, Jerome; Vuorinen, Tommi A.T.; Warren, Tristram; Wassermann, Joachim; Xiao, Han

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Year Published: 2020

Linking land and sea through an ecological-economic model of coral reef recreation

Coastal zones are popular recreational areas that substantially contribute to social welfare. Managers can use information about specific environmental features that people value, and how these might change under different management scenarios, to spatially target actions to areas of high current or potential value. We explored how snorkelers’...

Oleson, Kirsten L. L.; Bagstad, Kenneth J.; Fezzi, Carlo; Barnes, Megan; Donovan, Mary; Falinski, Kim A.; Gorospe, Kelvin; Htun, Hla; Lecky, Joey; Villa, Ferdinando; Wong, Tamara

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Year Published: 2020

Reconstructing the velocity and deformation of a rapid landslide using multiview video

Noncontact measurements of spatially varied ground surface deformation during landslide motion can provide important constraints on landslide mechanics. Here, we present and test a new method for extracting measurements of rapid landslide surface displacement and velocity (accelerations of approximately 1 m/s2) using sequences of stereo...

Rapstine, Thomas D; Rengers, Francis K.; Allstadt, Kate; Iverson, Richard M.; Smith, Joel B.; Obryk, Maciej; Logan, M.; Olsen, M. J.

Photos and videos described and linked on this webpage come from a wide variety of USGS science activities and presentations performed by USGS Science Center staff members in the Region 7-Upper Colorado Basin.

Filter Total Items: 525
Constructed Pond
August 12, 2015

First Pond below Gold King Mine

First of four settling ponds located downstream from North Fork Cement Creek to facilitate settling of solids material after addition of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) to the North Fork Cement Creek.  Latitude 37.89451, Longitude -107.64763.

Photo shot of scenery around Gold King Mine.
August 12, 2015

View from Gold King Mine

View from the Gold King Mine showing water flowing toward viewer in culvert that collects water from the draining Gold King mine tunnel and diverts water around the waste pile on which it flows and which falls off to the left of the photo. Latitude 37.894631, Longitude -107.638288.

Close up of Minisipper
August 11, 2015

Minisipper

Photo of submersible Minisipper sampling device used to collect multiple water-quality samples during multiple-day deployment. At several locations downstream from the Gold King Mine following the Gold King Mine release on August 5, 2015.

Island near Durango, Colorado
August 11, 2015

Island Streambed Sampling

Island upstream from City of Durango, Colorado's water intake structure where streambed sediments were sampled.  Latitude 37.26428, Longitude -107.8812.

Minisipper at water intake
August 11, 2015

Minisipper at Durango

Minisipper location at City of Durango water intake structure.  Minisipper installed by USGS to collect multiple water-quality samples. Latitude 37.26428, Longitude -107.8812.

Stagecoach Lake, Steamboat, Colorado
July 31, 2015

Stagecoach Lake, Steamboat, Colorado

Sunset at Stagecoach Lake, Steamboat, Colorado

USGS Researchers on a glacial moraine boulder collecting a sample for cosmogenic beryllium-10 exposure dating.
July 16, 2015

Collecting glacial moraine boulder samples

This is an example of a boulder that is part of a glacial deposit in the southern Sawatch Mountains of Colorado. The moraine slopes down to the left side of the frame; this slope is modified from teh original depositional shape of the moraine deposit. A NAGT student intern is using a Brunton compass clinometer to measure the inclination of hte horizon above horizontal.

...
Image: Pitchfork Ranch, Wyoming
July 7, 2015

Pitchfork Ranch, Wyoming

Over 30 organizations and agencies are testing a USGS-developed oral sylvatic plague vaccine (SPV) at sites such as the Pitchfork Ranch in Wyoming, pictured here. If successful, the SPV could help protect endangered black-footed ferret populations in the western U.S. because the

...
Using a bridge crane to measure streamflow, Powder River at Arvada
May 27, 2015

Using a bridge crane to measure streamflow, Powder River at Arvada

Using a bridge crane to measure streamflow, Powder River at Arvada

May 22, 2015

Fumaroles in Norris Geyser Basin

Fumaroles (venting gas and steam) at the base of Porcelain Terrace in the Norris Geyser Basin, Yellowstone.

Water-quality sampling for pesticides, Shoshone River near Lovell
May 14, 2015

Water-quality sampling for pesticides, Shoshone River near Lovell

Water-quality sampling for pesticides, Shoshone River near Lovell

News items shown on this page are highlights of selected studies conducted and publications produced by USGS Science Center staff members in Region 7-Upper Colorado Basin.

Filter Total Items: 363
USGS science for a changing world logo
May 6, 2003

Streamflows in Utah are the lowest recorded in nearly 100 years, confirming what most Utahans have known for the past 4 years: the state is in a drought. According to a new U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) fact sheet on present and historical droughts in the state, however, the unusual aspect of this drought is not its length but its severity.

USGS
May 6, 2003

Streamflows in Utah are the lowest recorded in nearly 100 years, confirming what most Utahans have known for the past 4 years: the state is in a drought. According to a new U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) fact sheet on present and historical droughts in the state, however, the unusual aspect of this drought is not its length but its severity.

USGS
February 14, 2003

Not long ago, conventional wisdom was that you couldn’t predict the climate for more than a few days in advance. Then came the awareness of El Niño and La Niña and the forecast window increased to as much as 6 to 9 months, depending on the region and season.

USGS science for a changing world logo
December 16, 2002

The USGS has just completed an assessment of undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and natural gas resources in five geologic basins in the Rocky Mountain region. The assessed basins are: Uinta-Piceance of Colorado and Utah, Southwestern Wyoming (Greater Green River Basin), San Juan Basin of New Mexico and Colorado, Montana Thrust Belt, and the Powder River Basin of Wyoming and Montana.

USGS
December 16, 2002

The USGS has just completed an assessment of undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and natural gas resources in five geologic basins in the Rocky Mountain region.

USGS science for a changing world logo
December 3, 2002

Two reports published in a leading science journal cast doubt on the importance of ultraviolet-b radiation (UV-B) as a factor driving amphibian population declines. Scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the University of Washington, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency just released their research findings in the journal Ecology.

USGS
October 28, 2002

Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) will present new research on a variety of topics at the annual GSA meeting at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, October 27-30. A few highlights include:

USGS
April 26, 2002

Unexploded shells. Contaminated soils. Polluted groundwater. Military bases across the country are working to restore and protect the environment.

USGS science for a changing world logo
January 30, 2002

University of Utah seismologists will be on duty around-the-clock during the Olympics, armed with a new $1.2 million system so they can quickly supply public safety information if any disruptive earthquakes shake the 2002 Winter Games.

USGS
January 30, 2002

University of Utah seismologists will be on duty around-the-clock during the Olympics, armed with a new $1.2 million system so they can quickly supply public safety information if any disruptive earthquakes shake the 2002 Winter Games.

USGS science for a changing world logo
December 28, 2001

New GPS users, or people considering buying a GPS receiver, as well as, hikers, hunters, and other outdoor enthusiasts will benefit from the free workshops offered by the USGS on map reading, compass reading, and using GPS.

USGS
December 28, 2001

New GPS users, or people considering buying a GPS receiver, as well as, hikers, hunters, and other outdoor enthusiasts will benefit from the free workshops offered by the USGS on map reading, compass reading, and using GPS.

This page includes links to Social Media accounts (top of page), Science Centers (middle of page), and Regional Office staff members (bottom of page) of the USGS Region 7--Upper Colorado Basin.

USGS Science Centers in Region 7-Upper Colorado Basin conduct a large number of cooperative, co-funded science and monitoring projects with many other Federal, Tribal, State, and local agencies. Please scroll below to see the agencies with which those Science Centers currently have cooperative agreements.

Filter Total Items: 324