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: 386
Date published: September 13, 2011
Status: Completed

Natural Resources Conservation Service Deep Percolation

The conversion of agricultural land to urban residential land is associated with rapid population growth in the Grand Valley of western Colorado. Information regarding the effects of this land-use conversion on deep percolation, irrigation-water application, and associated salt loading to the Colorado River is needed to support water-resource planning and conservation efforts.

 

Contacts: Kenneth J Leib
Date published: August 9, 2011
Status: Completed

Biosolids, soils, crops, ground water, and streambed sediments in the vicinity of a biosolids-application area near Deer Trail, Colorado

The Metro Wastewater Reclamation District (Metro District) applies biosolids throughout their properties (the MetroGro Farm) near Deer Trail, Colorado. These biosolids applications could affect the quality of water in alluvial and bedrock aquifers, streambed sediment, soil, dust, and crops.

Water quality can be directly affected through:

  • Contaminated recharge water, or
  • ...
Contacts: Suzanne Paschke
Date published: June 19, 2011
Status: Completed

Characterization of the Hydrologic Resources of San Miguel County, New Mexico, and Identification of Critical Data Gaps in Characterizing the Hydrologic Resources, 2011

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with San Miguel County, New Mexico, conducted a study to assess publicly available information regarding the hydrologic resources of San Miguel County and to identify data gaps in that information and hydrologic information that could aid in the management of available water resources. The USGS operates four continuous annual streamgages in San...

Date published: June 5, 2011
Status: Active

Continuous Water Quality Monitoring on the Pecos River in Southern New Mexico

High levels of salinity in the Pecos River render it less useful for various purposes. It is believed that underground salt deposits in the Malaga area contribute to the increase in the salinity in the Pecos River as it flows through this area.

Contacts: Kyle C Davis
Date published: May 1, 2011
Status: Completed

Bathymetry of Groundhog and Totten Reservoirs

In order to better characterize the water supply capacity of Groundhog Reservoir, Dolores County, Colorado, and Totten Reservoir, Montezuma County, Colorado, the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Dolores Water Conservancy District, conducted a bathymetric survey of Groundhog and Totten Reservoir. The study was performed in June 2011 using a man-operated boat-mounted multibeam...

Date published: January 10, 2011
Status: Completed

Rural Douglas County Groundwater Network

More than 70 percent of the municipal water supply in the south Denver metropolitan area is provided by groundwater, and homeowners in rural areas depend solely on self-supplied groundwater for water supply. Increased groundwater withdrawal to meet the demand of the rapidly growing population is causing water levels to decline. The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Rural Water...

Contacts: Helen F Malenda
Date published: December 19, 2010
Status: Completed

RCMAP - Gunnison River at Spann Diversion at Gunnison, Colorado

The U.S. Geological Survey was engaged in a program to monitor and assess the long-term geomorphic behavior of selected river and stream reaches that previously had undergone some physical modification.  These modifications included natural channel adjustments to floods as well as intentional channel reconfigurations to alter the function or appearance of a river reach.
 

Gunnison...

Date published: October 1, 2010
Status: Active

Flood Database for Colorado

The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Colorado Department of Transportation, created a Web-based geodatabase for information on floods from 1867 through water year 2015 and information on paleofloods occurring in the past 5,000 to 10,000 years.  The geodatabase was created using Environmental Systems Research Institute ArcGIS JavaScript Application Programing Interface. Engineers...

Date published: November 21, 2009
Status: Completed

RCMAP - Uncompahgre River at Ridgway, Colorado

The U.S. Geological Survey was engaged in a program to monitor and assess the long-term geomorphic behavior of selected river and stream reaches that previously had undergone some physical modification.  These modifications included natural channel adjustments to floods as well as intentional channel reconfigurations to alter the function or appearance of a river reach.

The Uncompahgre...

Contacts: Cory A Williams
Date published: October 1, 2009
Status: Completed

Eagle River Water-Quality Data

The Eagle River drains approximately 970 square miles (sq mi) west of the Continental Divide in central Colorado before flowing into the Colorado River. The Eagle River watershed (ERW) is located primarily within Eagle County and includes the towns of Vail, Minturn, Avon, Edwards, Eagle, and Gypsum. The eastern boundary of the Eagle River watershed is drained by Gore Creek, located at Vail...

Contacts: Kenneth J Leib
Date published: September 30, 2009
Status: Completed

Development of a fecal contamination monitoring and control strategy in upper Fountain Creek, Colorado

Fountain Creek is a high-gradient stream on the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. The headwaters of Fountain Creek drain Pikes Peak, a major destination for tourism. Fountain Creek is a drinking-water source for the City of Colorado Springs, Colorado, and is used for irrigation, recreation, and other purposes between Colorado Springs and the confluence with the Arkansas River at...

Contacts: David P Mau
Date published: June 21, 2009
Status: Completed

NAWQA High Plains Regional Groundwater Study

As part of the National Water Quality Assessment Program (NAWQA), the USGS has evaluated ground-water quality in the High Plains aquifer system. Beginning in 1999 and continuing for a period of 6 years, the High Plains Regional Groundwater Study intensively investigated the...

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: 5,264
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Year Published: 2020

Temporal and spatial variability of shallow soil moisture across four planar hillslopes on a tropical ocean island, San Cristóbal, Galápagos

Study Region: This paper provides a summary of findings from temporal and spatial studies of soil water content on planar hillslopes across the equatorial island of San Cristóbal, Galápagos (Ecuador). Study Focus: Soil water content (SWC) was measured to generate temporal and spatial records to determine seasonal variation and to investigate how...

Percy, Madelyn S.; Riveros-Iregui, Diego A.; Mirus, Benjamin B.; Benninger, Larry K.

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Year Published: 2020

Landslides across the United States: Occurrence, susceptibility, and data limitations

Detailed information about landslide occurrence is the foundation for advancing process understanding, susceptibility mapping, and risk reduction. Despite the recent revolution in digital elevation data and remote sensing technologies, landslide mapping remains resource intensive. Consequently, a modern, comprehensive map of landslide occurrence...

Mirus, Benjamin B.; Jones, Eric S.; Baum, Rex L.; Godt, Jonathan W.; Slaughter, Stephen Lee; Crawford, Matthew; Lancaster, Jeremy T.; Stanley, Thomas; Kirschbaum, Dalia; Burns, William J.; Schmitt, Robert G.; Lindsey, Kassandra O; McCoy, Kevin

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Year Published: 2020

Nontuberculous mycobacterial disease and molybdenum in Colorado watersheds

Nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) are environmental bacteria that may cause chronic lung disease. Environmental factors that favor NTM growth likely increase the risk of NTM exposure within specific environments. We aimed to identify water-quality constituents (Al, As, Cd, Ca, Cu, Fe, Pb, Mg, Mn, Mo, Ni, K, Se, Na, Zn, and pH) associated with NTM...

Lipner, Ettie M; French, Joshua; Bern, Carleton R.; Walton-Day, Katie; Knox, David; Strong, Michael; Prevots, D. Rebecca; Crooks, James L

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Year Published: 2020

Hydrothermal activity in the southwest Yellowstone Plateau Volcanic Field

In the past two decades, the U.S. Geological Survey and the National Park Service have studied hydrothermal activity across the Yellowstone Plateau Volcanic Field (YPVF) to improve the understanding of the magmatic-hydrothermal system and to provide a baseline for detecting future anomalous activity. In 2017 and 2018 we sampled water and gas over...

Hurwitz, Shaul; McCleskey, R. Blaine; Bergfeld, Deborah; Peek, Sara; Susong, David; Roth, David A.; Hungerford, Jefferson; White, Erin B; Harrison, Lauren; Hosseini, Behnaz; Vaughan, R. Greg; Hunt, Andrew G.; Paces, James

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Year Published: 2020

Quantifying trends in arsenic, nitrate, and dissolved solids from selected wells in Utah

Groundwater makes up a primary portion of the water supply in many parts of Utah, with annual withdrawals estimated at more than 1,000,000 acre-feet per year. Increases to groundwater withdrawal and land use may negatively impact water availability. Ensuring availability of clean water requires understanding how water quality has changed over time...

Miller, Olivia L.
Miller, O.L., 2020, Quantifying trends in arsenic, nitrate, and dissolved solids from selected wells in Utah: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2020–5047, 80 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20205047.

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Year Published: 2020

Evaluating the potential role of bioactive chemicals on the distribution of invasive Asian carp upstream and downstream from river mile 278 in the Illinois waterway

Two non-native carp species have invaded the Illinois Waterway and are a threat to Great Lakes ecosystems. Poor water quality in the upper Illinois Waterway, may be a factor contributing to the stalling of the carp population front near river mile 278. In 2015, the U.S. Geological Survey collected 4 sets of water samples from two sites upstream...

Battaglin, William A.; Duncker, James J.; Terrio, Paul J.; Bradley, Paul; Barber, Larry; DeCicco, Laura A.

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Year Published: 2020

Water-table elevation maps for 2008 and 2016 and water-table elevation changes in the aquifer system underlying eastern Albuquerque, New Mexico

The addition of surface water from the San Juan-Chama Drinking Water Project to the Albuquerque water supply and the reduction in per capita water use has led to decreased groundwater withdrawals. This decrease in withdrawals has resulted in rising groundwater levels since 2008 in portions of the aquifer underlying Albuquerque. The wells used to...

Flickinger, Allison K.; Mitchell, Aurelia C.
Flickinger, A.K., and Mitchell, A.C., 2020, Water-table elevation maps for 2008 and 2016 and water-table elevation changes in the aquifer system underlying eastern Albuquerque, New Mexico: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2020–1036, 9 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20201036.

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Year Published: 2020

Geometric and material variability influences stress states relevant to coastal permafrost bluff failure

Scientific knowledge and engineering tools for predicting coastal erosion are largely confined to temperate climate zones that are dominated by non-cohesive sediments. The pattern of erosion exhibited by the ice-bonded permafrost bluffs in Arctic Alaska, however, is not well explained by these tools. Investigation of the oceanographic, thermal,...

Thomas, Matthew A.; Mota, Alejandro; Jones, Benjamin M.; Choens, R. Charles; Frederick, Jennifer M.; Bull, Diana L.

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Year Published: 2020

The influence of frequency and duration of seismic ground motion on the size of triggered landslides—A regional view

Observation, theory, and intuition all suggest that larger earthquakes should trigger larger landslides. Many factors could contribute to this, including depth-dependent shear strength or non-linearity of ground motion in soils and rock, but we hypothesize that the key characteristics of large earthquakes causing this phenomenon are (in addition...

Jibson, Randall W.; Tanyaş, Hakan

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Year Published: 2020

Fluoride occurrence in United States groundwater

Data from 38,105 wells were used to characterize fluoride (F) occurrence in untreated United States (U.S.) groundwater. For domestic wells (n = 11,032), water from which is generally not purposely fluoridated or monitored for quality, 10.9% of the samples have F concentrations >0.7 mg/L (U.S. Public Health Service recommended optimal F...

McMahon, Peter B.; Brown, Craig J.; Johnson, Tyler D.; Belitz, Kenneth; Lindsey, Bruce D.

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Year Published: 2020

Trends in thermal maturity indicators for the organic sulfur-rich Eagle Ford Shale

Thermal maturity is critical to evaluate petroleum systems and to interpret biomarker results for paleoenvironmental and geobiology studies. Many thermal maturity indices were developed for marine source rocks containing type II kerogen, but their behavior in organic sulfur-rich source rocks requires more investigation. Here, we present...

French, Katherine L.; Birdwell, Justin E.; Lewan, Michael

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Year Published: 2020

Isolating anthropogenic wetland loss by concurrently tracking inundation and land cover disturbance across the Mid-Atlantic Region, U.S.

Global trends in wetland degradation and loss have created an urgency to monitor wetland extent, as well as track the distribution and causes of wetland loss. Satellite imagery can be used to monitor wetlands over time, but few efforts have attempted to distinguish anthropogenic wetland loss from climate-driven variability in wetland extent. We...

Vanderhoof, Melanie K.; Christensen, Jay; Beal, Yen-Ju G.; DeVries, Ben; Lang, Megan W.; Hwang, Nora; Mazzarella, Christine; Jones, John W.

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: 524
Water-quality sampling from Salt River cableway
May 13, 2015

Water-quality sampling from Salt River cableway

Water-quality sampling from Salt River cableway

Digging trench in which to bury cable transmitting GW data to streamgage
March 20, 2015

Digging trench to bury cable transmitting GW data to streamgage

Digging trench in which to bury cable transmitting groundwater data from well to streamgage

Setting up Groundwater Streamgage on Green River nr LaBarge
March 13, 2015

Setting up Groundwater Streamgage on Green River nr LaBarge

Setting up Groundwater Streamgage on Green River nr LaBarge

Wading White River to determine stream discharge using Flow Tracker on clear fall day.
February 6, 2015

White River near Watson, Utah

Measuring discharge in White River near Watson, Utah using FlowTracker on sunny winter day.

An agricultural barn with farming equipment stored outside in Colorado.
December 31, 2014

An agricultural barn with farming equipment stored outside in Colorado

An agricultural barn with farming equipment stored outside in Colorado.

December 31, 2014

Bat Thermal Video

Imagery from temperature-sensing cameras showing bats in hibernation. This new footage suggests that bats who warm up from hibernation together throughout the winter may be better at surviving white nose syndrome, a disease caused by a cold-loving fungus ravaging insect-eating bat populations in the United States and Canada. Locations: Gap Cave,125 Cumberland Gap National

A field of wind turbines in Wyoming with a storm rolling in.
December 31, 2014

Wind Turbines During Approaching Storm

A field of wind turbines in Wyoming with a storm rolling in.

Wheat field wind turbines in Wyoming.
December 31, 2014

Wheat Field Wind Turbines in Wyoming

Wheat field wind turbines in Wyoming.

Image: Colorado River near Moab
December 24, 2014

Colorado River near Moab

The Colorado River as it runs near Moab, UT, surrounded by sandstone cliffs.

Image: Colorado River near Moab
December 24, 2014

Colorado River near Moab

The Colorado River as it runs near Moab, UT, surrounded by sandstone cliffs.

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: 362
USGS science for a changing world logo
August 23, 2001

Today, August 23, all 185 Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Native American schools are connected to the Internet, marking the completion of the Access Native America (ANA) project. Interior Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Neal A. McCaleb will today bring the last school online, the Chichiltah/Jones Ranch Community School located on the Navajo reservation in Chichiltah, N.M.

USGS
August 23, 2001

Today, August 23, all 185 Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Native American schools are connected to the Internet, marking the completion of the Access Native America (ANA) project.

USGS science for a changing world logo
June 12, 2001

The geology of Colorado National Monument and surrounding areas is presented in a new U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) map that is designed to serve visitors as well as students and the most ardent scientist.

USGS
June 12, 2001

The geology of Colorado National Monument and surrounding areas is presented in a new U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) map that is designed to serve visitors as well as students and the most ardent scientist. 

USGS science for a changing world logo
May 14, 2001

 

May 14, 2001 – The U. S. Geological Survey (USGS), Yellowstone National Park and the University of Utah have signed an agreement to establish the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory to strengthen long-term monitoring of earthquakes and the slumbering volcano beneath Yellowstone National Park. 

USGS
May 14, 2001

 The U. S. Geological Survey (USGS), Yellowstone National Park and the University of Utah have signed an agreement to establish the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory to strengthen long-term monitoring of earthquakes and the slumbering volcano beneath Yellowstone National Park.

USGS science for a changing world logo
May 8, 2001

Federal, state and local policy makers will gather in Casper, Wyoming, on May 9-10 to examine science issues associated with the development of coalbed methane. The two-day conference and field trip, sponsored by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), will examine a number of topics including: what is coalbed methane, how it forms, where it occurs, how it is developed, and consequences of development.

USGS
May 8, 2001

 Federal, state and local policy makers will gather in Casper, Wyoming, on May 9-10 to examine science issues associated with the development of coalbed methane. 

USGS
February 23, 2001

A new U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) assessment of the nation’s coal resources shows abundant high quality, low-sulfur coal on federal and private lands in the Colorado Plateau region of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah. The area is also home to vast quantities of coal bed methane gas - natural gas contained in coal.

USGS science for a changing world logo
January 2, 2001

Nitrous oxide is an important atmospheric trace gas that contributes to the greenhouse effect and the destruction of ozone. Researchers hypothesize that one important source of atmospheric nitrous oxide is ground water, yet few studies have tested this hypothesis.

USGS
January 2, 2001

Nitrous oxide is an important atmospheric trace gas that contributes to the greenhouse effect and the destruction of ozone. Researchers hypothesize that one important source of atmospheric nitrous oxide is ground water, yet few studies have tested this hypothesis. 

USGS science for a changing world logo
December 7, 2000

Neither a tree-dweller nor a night bird, and roughly the size of a chicken, the Gunnison sage-grouse is not a particularly secretive bird yet just recently has it been identified as a new species of bird. 

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.