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River Gain and Loss Studies for the Red River of the North Basin, North Dakota and Minnesota

Open-File Report 2004-1076

 

By  Tara Williams-Sether

 

In cooperation with the Bureau of Reclamation

 


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Abstract

The Dakota Water Resources Act passed by the U.S. Congress in 2000 authorized the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a comprehensive study of future water-quantity and -quality needs of the Red River of the North (Red River) Basin in North Dakota and of possible options to meet those water needs.  To obtain the river gain and loss information needed to properly account for available streamflow within the basin, available river gain and loss studies for the Sheyenne, Turtle, Forest, and Park Rivers in North Dakota and the Wild Rice, Sand Hill, Clearwater, South Branch Buffalo, and Otter Tail Rivers in Minnesota were reviewed.  Ground-water discharges for the Sheyenne River in a reach between Lisbon and Kindred, N. Dak., were about 28.8 cubic feet per second in 1963 and about 45.0 cubic feet per second in 1986.  Estimated monthly net evaporation losses for additional flows to the Sheyenne River from the Missouri River ranged from 1.4 cubic feet per second in 1963 to 51.0 cubic feet per second in 1976.  Maximum water losses for a reach between Harvey and West Fargo, N. Dak., for 1956-96 ranged from about 161 cubic feet per second for 1976 to about 248 cubic feet per second for 1977.  Streamflow gains of 1 to 1.5 cubic feet per second per mile were estimated for the Wild Rice, Sand Hill, and Clearwater Rivers in Minnesota.  The average ground-water discharge for a 5.2-mile reach of the Otter Tail River in Minnesota was about 14.1 cubic feet per second in August 1994.  The same reach lost about 14.1 cubic feet per second between February 1994 and June 1994 and about 21.2 cubic feet per second between August 1994 and August 1995.

 

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Contents

Abstract

Introduction

River gain and loss studies for the Sheyenne River

River gain and loss studies for other rivers

Summary

References

Figures

1. Map showing locations of aquifers and physiographic areas in the Red River of the North Basin, North Dakota and Minnesota

2. Map showing locations of streamflow-measurement sites used in Paulson (1964) and Guenthner (1991) to determine ground-water discharge to the Sheyenne River in North Dakota

3. Graph showing mean water losses estimated for the Sheyenne River in North Dakota using the long-term year-by-year hydrologic budget method, 1943-96

4. Map showing locations of streamflow-measurement sites in North Dakota

5. Map showing locations of streamflow-measurement sites on the Otter Tail River in Minnesota

TABLES

1. Mean monthly streamflow for selected sites on the Sheyenne River in North Dakota, October through February 1957-62

2. Streamflow for the Sheyenne River between Valley City and West Fargo, North Dakota, September 13 through November 19, 1963

3. Streamflow for selected sites on the Sheyenne River in North Dakota, October 1986

4. Estimated monthly net evaporation losses for additional flows to the Sheyenne River in North Dakota, 1931-84

5. Mean water losses estimated for the Sheyenne River in North Dakota using the long-term year-by-year hydrologic budget method, 1943-96

6. Monthly mean water losses estimated for selected Sheyenne River reaches in North Dakota using the hydrograph method

7. Statistics of the autocorrelation analysis (statistical method) for the Sheyenne River reach between Kindred and West Fargo, North Dakota

8. Estimated water losses for the Sheyenne River reach between Kindred and West Fargo, North Dakota

9. Streamflow for selected sites on the Turtle, Forest, and Park Rivers in North Dakota, October through December 1991

10. Streamflow and changes in streamflow for sties on the Otter Tail River in Minnesota

 

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U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
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