LAWRENCE, Kan. -- The Arkansas River near the Kansas-Colorado State line flowed at record levels during the 1998 water year (October 1, 1997 to September 30, 1998) according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The USGS streamflow-gaging station located near Coolidge, Kansas, flowed at more than 330 cubic feet per second (654 acre feet per day) for 98 days during the 1998 water year. The last time the river flowed for this many days at or above 330 cubic feet per second (ft3/s) was in 1966. The average flow at this station for the 1998 water year was 577 ft3/s, the third largest annual average flow computed since the USGS began data collection in 1951. Funds to operate the Arkansas River near Coolidge streamflow-gaging station are provided by the Kansas-Colorado Arkansas River Compact Administration and the USGS through a cooperative agreement.
Releases of water into the Arkansas River by Colorado have helped to increase the flow of the river to near record levels. The releases are the result of a 20-year-long lawsuit filed by Kansas against Colorado to force additional releases of water into the river in accordance with the Kansas-Colorado Arkansas River Compact.
The Arkansas River near Coolidge streamflow-gaging station is one of a network of 149 gaging stations operated by the USGS to define streamflow in the major river basins and tributaries throughout Kansas. Streamflow-gaging stations are funded by local, state, and federal agencies and the USGS through cooperative agreements.
Information and data from 149 gaging stations, 19 lakes and reservoirs, 19 ground-water wells, and other data are presented in the annual Kansas water-resources data report. The 447 page report is the most recent in the series of annual water-data reports published by the USGS, the principal federal agency responsible for collecting and releasing hydrologic data needed for water-resources development, management, and research. The Kansas District of the USGS, with headquarters in Lawrence and field offices in Hays and Wichita, provides surface-water, groundwater, and water-quality information.
Near real-time data for USGS streamflow-gaging stations are available on the Internet. Data in tabular and graphical format are available for 120 streamflow-gaging stations in Kansas. During periods of very high flow, those stations above National Weather Service flood stage are listed at the top of the tabled data for easy reference. This information and links to other water-resources information can be viewed on the Kansas District home page at http://ks.water.usgs.gov/.
Return to the U.S. Water News Archives page
Return to the U.S. Water News Homepage