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Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed, Arizona (Runoff)

Metadata Updated: February 4, 2022

The Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed (WGEW) runoff database has the longest period of record of runoff in the world for a semiarid location, with data collection beginning in 1953. Runoff occurs at Walnut Gulch primarily as a result of convective thunderstorms during the months of July through September. Runoff volume and flow duration are correlated with drainage area as a result of the limited areal extent of runoff producing rainfall and transmission losses or infiltration of the flood wave into the channel alluvium. Runoff is measured at three ranges of watershed size: small, 0.0018-0.059 km2; medium, 0.35-1.60 km2; and large, 2.27-149 km2. The small watersheds are termed ‘‘unit source area watersheds'' and were established to quantify the interaction of rainfall intensity patterns, soils, vegetation, and management on the rates and amounts runoff and sediment production. The medium watersheds were established at preexisting small earthen dams or stock tanks to obtain inexpensive measurements of storm runoff volume and annual sediment yield. The large watersheds were established to quantify the effects of the spatial and temporal variability of thunderstorm rainfall and channel characteristics on water yield, peak discharge, and sediment yield. Runoff was originally measured using a stilling well, float, and analog stage recorders (Stevens A-35, Friez FD-4, Friez FW-1) with mechanical clocks to record the timing of the event. In 1999, digital recorders consisting of potentiometers attached to the stilling well gear mechanism and a Campbell Scientific CR-10 data logger were added to all of the runoff measurement stations. At present, both the analog and digital data are being collected and are archived.

Access & Use Information

Public: This dataset is intended for public access and use. License: Creative Commons CCZero

Downloads & Resources


Metadata Created Date November 10, 2020
Metadata Updated Date February 4, 2022

Metadata Source

Harvested from USDA JSON

Additional Metadata

Resource Type Dataset
Metadata Created Date November 10, 2020
Metadata Updated Date February 4, 2022
Publisher Agricultural Research Service
Identifier WalnutRunoff_jjm_2015-03-23_1223
Data Last Modified 2021-12-10
Public Access Level public
Bureau Code 005:18
Metadata Context
Schema Version
Catalog Describedby
Harvest Object Id 07ee288c-c1aa-4761-8547-dfb0565a2660
Harvest Source Id d3fafa34-0cb9-48f1-ab1d-5b5fdc783806
Harvest Source Title USDA JSON
Old Spatial {"type":"Polygon","coordinates":-110.2,31.773,-109.9,31.773,-109.9,31.662,-110.2,31.662}
Program Code 005:040
Source Datajson Identifier True
Source Hash ebfd48e8e70ae85db460ab8ef168ec36acfc2376
Source Schema Version 1.1
Spatial {"type":"Polygon","coordinates":-110.2,31.773,-109.9,31.773,-109.9,31.662,-110.2,31.662}

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