Data Series 283

Data Series 283

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Sampling Plan

Historical information collected by the NPS helped identify candidate springs for sampling. NPS staff inventoried the location of 16 springs and seeps in 1997. In 2000, NPS staff surveyed the location of these 16 springs using Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers and determined the locations of an additional 23 possible seeps or springs from satellite infrared imagery or recollection of park staff. To help establish a ranking of key water resources at the monument springs that were visited by NPS staff during the GPS survey were described as either perennial or intermittent. Springs that are considered key resources by the NPS are those that provide flow to streams throughout the year, or those that provide enough flow to sustain aquatic habitat in parts of intermittent stream channels. The Level-1 Baseline Water-Quality Inventory described in this data report focuses on these key springs.

Using historical water-quality, streamflow, and NPS spring survey data, Geographic Information System (GIS) information provided by NPS staff (Mary Cooprider and Jason Herynk), topographic maps, and information provided by local residents, the USGS identified candidate springs for sampling. Candidate springs included perennial springs and springs of unknown flow constancy identified by NPS staff, and other springs identified on USGS topographic maps or suggested by local residents. Springs on privately owned land in the headwaters of Bear Gulch upstream from Bear Gulch Reservoir were not sampled because permission to access the springs was not obtained. As a result of consultation and field reconnaissance with NPS natural resources (Denise Louie, Paul Johnson), maintenance (John Osborne), and trail crew (Lisa Smith) staff during early June 2006, the USGS narrowed the list of candidate springs to seven. Spring sampling sites shown on figure 2 are described in table 1. Photographs of each site are shown in figures 3–17.

During June 2006, USGS staff, assisted by NPS staff, sampled and measured field water-quality parameters (dissolved oxygen, pH, specific conductance, temperature, and alkalinity) for seven springs characterized by NPS staff as likely to flow perennially. The source of flow from Willow Spring could not be determined precisely, owing to mass wasting, fallen timber, and heavily overgrown terrain in the small canyon containing the spring. A sample collected from Willow Spring South Rivulet, downstream from the mapped location of Willow Spring, is believed to be representative of ground water discharging from Willow Spring. Samples from other springs were collected from or close to the spring pool or cistern. All samples were analyzed for dissolved concentrations of major ions, trace elements, stable isotopes of hydrogen and oxygen, and for tritium. The constituents and analytical results are listed in table 2.

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