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Report Abstract

ESTIMATES OF MOUNTAIN-FRONT STREAMFLOW AVAILABLE FOR POTENTIAL RECHARGE TO THE TULAROSA BASIN, NEW MEXICO

By Scott D. Waltemeyer

Streamflow in the Tularosa Basin, New Mexico, infiltrates into alluvial-basin aquifers at or near mountain fronts. Streamflow at or near mountain fronts is a substantial component of potential recharge to these aquifers. Streamflow response from precipitation differs substantially between the streams draining the Sacramento Mountains on the eastern side of the basin and those draining the San Andres Mountains on the western side.

Mean annual streamflow at mountain fronts that is available for potential recharge to the Tularosa Basin was estimated using two regional regression methods. The method for estimating mean annual streamflow using basin-climatic characteristics was applied to 46 subbasins in the Tularosa Basin. Drainage areas for the subbasins ranged from 0.87 to 157 square miles, and mean annual precipitation ranged from 11.80 to 24.89 inches. Mean annual streamflow to the basin is estimated to be about 95 cubic feet per second or 68,800 acre-feet using the basin-climatic characteristics method. The method for estimating mean annual streamflow using channel-geometry characteristics was applied to 12 subbasins in the Tularosa Basin. Of the 46 basins, 31 had drainage areas less than 20.7 square miles and 3 had active-channel widths less than 15 feet, which were outside the ranges used to develop the regression equations.

Abstract from Water-Resources Investigations Report 01-4013



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