Unified Interior Regions

Region 7: Upper Colorado Basin

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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: 378
Date published: June 4, 2018
Status: Active

New Mexico Water Science Center Sediment Laboratory

The U. S. Geological Survey (USGS), New Mexico Water Science Center (NMWSC), works in cooperation with State and Federal agencies in New Mexico to provide reliable and impartial sediment data and interpretation to resource managers, planners, and other stakeholders, and the general public. The NMWSC has been collecting daily suspended sediment samples and periodic turbidity, bed material,...

Date published: May 25, 2018
Status: Active

Tellurium in Igneous-related Epithermal Precious Metal Deposits in Colorado and New Mexico

The project aims to improve our understanding of the causes of tellurium enrichment in epithermal precious metal deposits, and strengthen our ability to assess the Nation's tellurium deposits. Tellurium is used in solar panel technologies and is considered a critical mineral. Epithermal deposits of this type represent a prospective future source of tellurium.

Date published: May 15, 2018
Status: Active

StreamStats in Montana and Wyoming

StreamStats is a Web-based geographic information system application that provides users with access to basin and streamflow characteristics for gaged and ungaged streams.

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
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.

Date published: May 8, 2018
Status: Active

Application of Plasma Ionization Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometry

This project will allow us to (1) develop innovative analytical techniques for isotope geochemistry and U-Pb geochronology using plasma ionization mass spectrometry, and (2) apply our new analytical techniques to collaborative research projects of high priority to the Mineral Resources Program, including studies related to the U.S. midcontinent region and Alaska, and/or processes related to...

Date published: May 7, 2018
Status: Active

Characterization and Quantification of Salinity Loads from Blacks Fork above Smiths Fork near Lyman, Wyoming

The Blacks Fork is a stream that contributes a salinity load to the Colorado River Basin. In order to quantify the salinity load, collection of continuous streamflow and specific conductance data, and monthly sampling for total-dissolved solids will occur from April 2018 through September 2019. Calculations of monthly and annual salinity loading from the Blacks Fork will be published in 2020...

Date published: May 4, 2018
Status: Active

Monitoring for Pesticides in Wyoming's Water

Wyoming's groundwater and streams are routinely monitored for pesticides. In order to balance the use of pesticides (herbicides, insecticides, and fungicides) with the protection of water resources, the Wyoming Department of Agriculture began a project to sample groundwater in 1995, in cooperation with the U.S. Geological Survey. Since the project's inception, more than 750 samples from...

Date published: May 3, 2018
Status: Active

Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative: Water Resources

The Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative is a long-term science-based effort to assess and enhance aquatic and terrestrial habitats at a landscape scale in southwest Wyoming, while facilitating responsible development...

Date published: May 3, 2018
Status: Active

WLCI: Long-term streamflow, water-quality, and groundwater data collection

Riparian and aquatic ecosystems in semiarid landscapes like Southwest Wyoming contribute substantially to regional biodiversity. Long-term monitoring data that describe streamflow, surface-water quality, and groundwater levels are needed for assessing possible effects of changes in land use on those ecosystems.

Date published: May 2, 2018
Status: Active

Jackson Hole Airport Groundwater Study

In 2008 the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Jackson Hole Airport Board and Teton Conservation District, began a study designed to characterize the alluvial aquifer at the Jackson Hole Airport. The purpose of this study was to determine the direction of groundwater flow, calculate hydraulic gradients, and characterize groundwater quality both upgradient and downgradient of...

Contacts: Peter R Wright
Date published: May 2, 2018
Status: Active

WLCI: Groundwater Streamgages in the upper Green River Basin

Real-time groundwater streamgages are created at existing streamgages by adding streambank wells (piezometers) to expand the understanding of groundwater/surface-water interaction. The object of this project is to:

  • Identify interactions between the stream and near-surface groundwater
  • Evaluate
  • ...

USGS Science Centers in Region 7-Upper Colorado Basin collect a wide variety of natural resource data types including spatial, geologic, hydrologic, and biologic data. Data included in USGS-series publications that are not publically available in USGS databases are published in Data Releases. Tools are USGS products that can be used to analyze those types of data.

Filter Total Items: 253
Date published: April 3, 2018

Minnesota Mine Shaft Tracer Data, Lion Creek Watershed near Empire, Colorado, July-November, 2017

On July 26, 2017, a solution containing approximately 200 kilograms of dissolved sodium bromide was added to the the flooded underground shaft of the Minnesota Mine, near Empire, Colorado. This addition was conducted as part of an effort to determine the degree to which the mine shaft is hydrologically connected to a series of downgradient seeps and springs.

Date published: March 28, 2018

DroughtWatch - View drought conditions

  • The USGS DroughtWatch website is a map-based resource from USGS WaterWatch that gives users hourly visual updates for drought conditions at over 3000 locations across the United States (

  • ...
Date published: March 13, 2018

WaterQualityWatch -- Continuous Real-Time Water Quality of Surface Water in the United States

WaterQualityWatch (http://waterwatch.usgs.gov/wqwatch/) is a USGS web site that provides access to real time water-quality data collected in surface waters throughout the United States as part of the USGS mission to describe water resources. Measurements include streamflow (through WaterWatch) water temperature, specific conductance, pH,...

Date published: March 13, 2018

WaterWatch

WaterWatch (http://waterwatch.usgs.gov) is a U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) World Wide Web site that displays maps, graphs, and tables describing real-time, recent, and past streamflow conditions for the United States. The real-time information generally is updated on an hourly basis.

Date published: March 13, 2018

Annual Water Data Reports

Beginning with Water Year 2006 and ending with Water Year 2013, annual water data reports were made available as individual electronic Site Data Sheets for the entire Nation for retrieval, download, and localized printing on demand. As of 2014, NWISWeb now provides an on-demand, print-ready Water-Year Summary as an annual water-data product.

Date published: March 13, 2018

USGS Gage at Embudo Creek - Dixon, NM

A site on the Rio Grande near the town of Embudo, New Mexico, was established as the first USGS training camp for hydrographers.

See Publications:

Embudo, New Mexico, birthplace of systematic stream gaging | The USGS at Embudo, New Mexico: 125 years of systematic...

Date published: March 13, 2018

USGS Groundwater Watch

The USGS has a distributed water database that is locally managed. Surface water, groundwater, and water quality data are compiled from these local, distributed databases into a national information system. The groundwater database contains records from about 850,000 wells that have been compiled during the course of groundwater hydrology studies over the past 100 years. 

Date published: March 13, 2018

Aquifers: Map of the Principal Aquifers of the United States

The areal and vertical location of the major aquifers is fundamental to the determination of groundwater availability for the Nation. The map, which is derived from the Ground Water Atlas of the United States, indicates the areal extent of the uppermost principal aquifers on a national scale.

Date published: March 7, 2018

Surface-water data for Wyoming

Real-time, daily, peak-flow, field measurements, and statistics of current and historical data that describe stream levels, streamflow (discharge), reservoir and lake levels, surface-water quality, and rainfall in Wyoming. Surface-water data are collected and stored as either discrete field-water-level measurements or as...

Date published: March 7, 2018

Groundwater data for Wyoming

Data from wells in Wyoming; well location data includes information such as latitude and longitude, well depth, and aquifer. Groundwater level data are collected and stored as either discrete field-water-level measurements or as continuous time-series data from automated recorders.

Date published: March 7, 2018

Water-quality data for Wyoming

Chemical, physical, and biological properties of water, sediment, and tissue samples from Wyoming. Water-quality data are collected as either discrete field measurements or as continuous time-series data from automated recorders that continuously record physical and chemical characteristics including pH, specific conductance, temperature, and dissolved oxygen.

Date published: February 26, 2018

Streamflow and water-quality data from all surface-water sites currently sampled in the WLCI area

Streamflow and water-quality data from all surface-water sites in data collection network in the WLCI area

Filter Total Items: 4,798
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Year Published: 2020

Preferential elution of ionic solutes in melting snowpacks: Improving process understanding through field observations and modeling in the Rocky Mountains

The preferential elution of ions from melting snowpacks is a complex problem that has been linked to temporary acidification of water bodies. However, the understanding of these processes in snowpacks around the world, including the polar regions that are experiencing unprecedented warming and melting, remains limited despite being instrumental in...

Costa, Diogo; Sexstone, Graham A.; Pomeroy, J.W.; Campbell, Donald H.; Clow, David W.; Mast, Alisa

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Year Published: 2020

Biomarker similarities between the saline lacustrine Eocene Green River and the Paleoproterozoic Barney Creek Formations

The Paleoproterozoic Barney Creek Formation, which is currently interpreted as a restricted, deep marine paleoenvironment, plays a disproportionate role in our understanding of Proterozoic ocean chemistry and the rise of complex life. The Barney Creek Formation hosts several unusual biomarker features, specifically its methylhopane and carotenoid...

French, Katherine L.; Birdwell, Justin E.; Vanden Berg, Michael

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Year Published: 2020

Persistence and plasticity in conifer water-use strategies

The selective use of seasonal precipitation by vegetation is critical to understanding the residence time and flow path of water in watersheds, yet there are limited datasets to test how climate alters these dynamics. Here, we use measurements of the seasonal cycle of tree ring 18O for two widespread conifer species in the Rocky Mountains of North...

Berkelhammer, Max ; Still, Chris ; Ritter, Francois ; Winnik, Matthew ; Anderson, Lesleigh; Carroll, Rosemary ; Carbone, Mariah ; Williams, Kenneth

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Year Published: 2020

Development of a global seismic risk model

Since 2015 the Global Earthquake Model (GEM) Foundation and its partners have been supporting regional programmes and bilateral collaborations to develop an open global earthquake risk model. These efforts led to the development of a repository of probabilistic seismic hazard models, a global exposure dataset comprising structural and occupancy...

Silva, Vitor; Amo-Oduro, Desmond; Calderon, Alejandro; Costa, Catarina; Dabbeek, Jamal; Despotaki, Venetia; Martins, Luis; Pagani, Marco; Rao, Anirudh; Simionato, Michele; Viganò, Daniele; Yepes-Estrada, Catalina; Acevedo, Ana Beatriz; Crowley, Helen; Horspool, Nick; Jaiswal, Kishor; Journeay, Murray; Pittore, Massimiliano

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Year Published: 2020

High-resolution mapping of the freshwater-brine interface using deterministic and Bayesian inversion of airborne electromagnetic data at Paradox Valley, USA

Salt loads in the Colorado River Basin are a primary water quality concern. Natural groundwater brine discharge to the Dolores River where it passes through the collapsed salt anticline of the Paradox Valley in western Colorado is a significant source of salt to the Colorado River. An airborne electromagnetic survey of Paradox Valley has...

Ball, Lyndsay B.; Bedrosian, Paul A.; Minsley, Burke J.

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Year Published: 2020

Progress in natural capital accounting for ecosystems

Reversing the ongoing degradation of the planet's ecosystems requires timely and detailed monitoring of ecosystem change and uses. Yet, the System of National Accounts (SNA), first developed in response to the economic crisis of the 1930s and used by statistical offices worldwide to record economic activity (for example, production, consumption,...

Hein, Lars; Bagstad, Kenneth J.; Obst, Carl; Edens, Bram; Schenau, Sjoerd; Castillo, Gem; Soulard, Francois; Brown, Claire; Driver, Amanda; Bordt, Michael; Steurer, Anton; Harris, Rocky; Capparros, Alejandro

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Year Published: 2020

A brief introduction to seismic instrumentation: Where does my data come from?

Modern seismology has been able to take advantage of several technological advances. These include feedback loops in the seismometer, specialized digitizers with absolute timing, and compression formats for storing data. While all of these advances have helped to improve the field, they can also leave newcomers a bit confused. Our goal here is...

Ringler, Adam T.; Bastien, Patrick

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Year Published: 2020

Estimating rupture dimensions of three major earthquakes in Sichuan, China, for early warning and rapid loss estimates

Large earthquakes like in Wenchuan in 2008, MW 7.9, Sichuan, China, provide opportunity for earthquake early warning (EEW) as many heavily shaken areas are far (~50 km) from the epicenter and warning time could be long enough (≥ 5 s) to take effective preventative action. On the other hand, earthquakes with magnitudes larger than ~M 6.5 are...

Li, Jiawei; Böse, Maren; Wyss, Max; Wald, David J.; Hutchinson, Alexandra; Clinton, John F.; Wu, Zhongliang; Jiang, Changsheng; Zhou, Shiyong

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Year Published: 2020

Earthquakes, did you feel it?

The US Geological Survey (USGS) “Did You Feel It?”® (DYFI) system is an automated system for rapidly collecting macroseismic intensity data from Internet users’ shaking and damage reports and generating intensity maps immediately following earthquakes.Although the collection and assignment of DYFI-based Macroseismic Intensity (MI) data depart...

Wald, David J.; Quitoriano, Vince; Dewey, James W.

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Year Published: 2020

The influence of frost weathering on the debris flow sediment supply in an alpine basin

Rocky, alpine mountains are prone to mass wasting from debris flows. The Chalk Cliffs study area (central Colorado, USA) produces debris flows annually. These debris flows are triggered when overland flow driven by intense summer convective storms mobilizes large volumes of sediment within the channel network. Understanding the debris flow...

Rengers, Francis K.; Kean, Jason W.; Reitman, Nadine G.; Smith, Joel B.; Coe, Jeffrey A.; McGuire, Luke

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Year Published: 2020

Natural gas hydrates: Status of potential as an energy resource

Gas hydrate is a widespread naturally-occurring combination of water and natural gases. Gas hydrate is found in shallow sediments of deepwater regions of the continental margins and in areas of continuous permafrost. Where gas supply is sufficient and migration pathways connect gas sources to favorable reservoirs, gas hydrate can accumulate to...

Boswell, Ray; Hancock, Steve; Yamamoto, Koji; Collett, Timothy; Pratap, Mahendra; Lee, Sung-Rock

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: 515
Floating the mighty Rio Grande
August 17, 2017

Floating the mighty Rio Grande

Staff float down the Rio Grande in New Mexico as part of their Swiftwater Awareness training. 

Scientist operates small drone over river valley with mountains in the background.
August 16, 2017

USGS uses drone with thermal infrared camera to study water resources

USGS Hydrologist Eric White flies a small unoccupied aircraft system – sUAS or "drone" – equipped with a thermal infrared camera during a groundwater/surface-water exchange study along the East River in Gunnison National Forest near Gothic, Colorado, in August 2017. The study was part of a multi-year project by the USGS Water Resources Mission Area Hydrogeophysics Branch

...
USGS, Las Cruces Field Office
August 4, 2017

USGS, Las Cruces Field Office

U.S. Geological Survey, New Mexico Water Science Center - Las Cruces Field Office location

Making a discharge measurement below the Eagle Nest Dam near Cimarron, New Mexico
July 31, 2017

Eagle Nest Dam overlooking the Cimarron River

Hydrologic technician Chris Peskuski snapped this picture from Eagle Nest Dam overlooking the Cimarron River where streamflow measurements are made to measure outflow from the dam. Eagle Nest Dam sits at 8,300 feet elevation and is surrounded by two of the highest peaks in New Mexico; Wheeler Peak and Baldy Mountain.

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. 

Collecting sample for pesticide analyses, Big Horn River near Kane, WY
July 27, 2017

Collecting sample for pesticide analyses, Big Horn River near Kane, WY

Sample collection from cableway above Big Horn River near Kane, Wyoming as part of project evaluating pesticides in Wyoming.

July 14, 2017

Debris flow monitoring at Chalk Cliffs, CO (2017)

The USGS and its cooperators have installed debris-flow monitoring equipment in the largest drainage basin at Chalk Cliffs, CO. Data collection at this site supports research on the hydrologic factors that control debris-flow initiation, entrainment, and flow dynamics.

This debris flow took place July 19, 2017. The video includes a single view of an instrumented

Taking water-quality equipment to Fogarty Creek
July 7, 2017

Taking water-quality equipment to Fogarty Creek

Taking water-quality equipment to Fogarty Creek

July 5, 2017

Return of the Yellowstone Grizzly Bear

Yellowstone grizzly bears inhabit federal, state, tribal, and private lands, and long-term research requires careful coordination across governmental levels. The Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team (IGBST) is an interdisciplinary group of scientists and biologists responsible for long-term monitoring and research efforts on grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone

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, 

...

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: 328
USGS
June 15, 2015

Fifty years ago on June 16, a devastating flood swept through the South Platte River Basin of the Front Range and Eastern Plains of Colorado, killing 21 people and causing more than $540 million in damage.

Image: USGS Idaho Water Science Director Dr. Kyle Blasch
June 15, 2015

Dr. Kyle W. Blasch begins work today as the Director of the U.S. Geological Survey’s Idaho Water Science Center, headquartered in Boise.

USGS
May 19, 2015

Crews from the U.S. Geological Survey are monitoring high streamflows due to sustained rain in various locations around Denver today.

collage of scientists conducting science related to each mission are
May 12, 2015

The latest coal resource assessment of the Powder River Basin showcases the newly revised USGS’ assessment methodology, which, for the first time, includes an estimate of the reserve base for the entire basin.

collage of scientists conducting science related to each mission are
May 5, 2015

FORT COLLINS, Colo. — Low-quality nesting and winter seasonal habitats are strong predictors of reduced gene flow between greater sage-grouse breeding locations, according to research just published in Ecology and Evolution and authored by the U.S. Geological Survey and their colleagues at the University of Waterloo.

USGS science for a changing world logo
April 10, 2015

Sioux Falls, SD. — Climate change may pose a substantial future risk for sagebrush habitat in southwestern Wyoming, and thus adversely affect the regional summer habitat and nesting areas of sage-grouse, according to a new study by the United States Geological Survey.

USGS
April 1, 2015

Scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey, Pennsylvania State University and the University of Utah have used a new stream-based methane monitoring method to identify and quantify groundwater methane discharging to a stream in an area of shale-gas development.

USGS
March 5, 2015

U.S. Geological Survey scientists who study trends in climate change will be presenting the results from new studies at a workshop held in Pacific Grove, Calif., March 8 – 11, 2015. 

collage of scientists conducting science related to each mission are
March 3, 2015

While the earth contains enough potash to meet the increased global demand for crop production and U.S. supplies are likely secure, some regions lack potash deposits needed for optimal food crop yields. According to a recent USGS global assessment of potash resources, the costs of importing potash long distances can limit its use and imports are subject to supply disruptions.

Image: Elk Traveling
March 2, 2015

LARAMIE, WY — Seeking insights to help moose, elk, mule deer and bighorn sheep populations, researchers from the University of Wyoming, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, the U.S. Geological Survey and other partners will spend much of March capturing animals on their winter ranges in western and southern Wyoming.

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