Skip Links

USGS - science for a changing world

Data Series 851

Geospatial Database of Estimates of Groundwater Discharge to Streams in the Upper Colorado River Basin

By Adriana Garcia, Melissa D. Masbruch, and David D. Susong


The U.S. Geological Survey, as part of the Department of the Interior’s WaterSMART (Sustain and Manage America’s Resources for Tomorrow) initiative, compiled published estimates of groundwater discharge to streams in the Upper Colorado River Basin as a geospatial database. For the purpose of this report, groundwater discharge to streams is the baseflow portion of streamflow that includes contributions of groundwater from various flow paths. Reported estimates of groundwater discharge were assigned as attributes to stream reaches derived from the high-resolution National Hydrography Dataset. A total of 235 estimates of groundwater discharge to streams were compiled and included in the dataset. Feature class attributes of the geospatial database include groundwater discharge (acre-feet per year), method of estimation, citation abbreviation, defined reach, and 8-digit hydrologic unit code(s). Baseflow index (BFI) estimates of groundwater discharge were calculated using an existing streamflow characteristics dataset and were included as an attribute in the geospatial database. A comparison of the BFI estimates to the compiled estimates of groundwater discharge found that the BFI estimates were greater than the reported groundwater discharge estimates.

First posted July 18, 2014

For additional information, contact:
Director, Utah Water Science Center
U.S. Geological Survey
2329 West Orton Circle
West Valley City, Utah 84119

Part or all of this report is presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). For best results viewing and printing PDF documents, it is recommended that you download the documents to your computer and open them with Adobe Reader. PDF documents opened from your browser may not display or print as intended. Download the latest version of Adobe Reader, free of charge. More information about viewing, downloading, and printing report files can be found here.

Suggested citation:

Garcia, A., Masbruch, M.D., and Susong, D.D., 2014, Geospatial database of estimates of groundwater discharge to streams in the Upper Colorado River Basin: U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 851, 6 p.,

ISSN 2327-638X (online)




Database Design

Data Display

Comparison of Baseflow Index Calculated and Reported Groundwater Discharge Estimates to Streams


References Cited

Accessibility FOIA Privacy Policies and Notices

Take Pride in America logo logo U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey
Page Contact Information: GS Pubs Web Contact
Page Last Modified: Monday, 28-Nov-2016 19:31:42 EST