Streams and Lakes Monitoring

Great Basin scientist uses device to measure stream water quality
Scientist monitors water quality at a stream in Great Basin National Park

NPS Photo

Overview

The Mojave Desert Network monitors six subalpine lakes and nine streams across Great Basin National Park each year.

Despite Great Basin's remote location and high air and water quality, waterbodies in the park face several potential risks. Proposed large-scale groundwater pumping in Snake and Spring valleys adjacent to the park could affect park water resources.

All six subalpine lakes are small, with average surface areas of 2 acres and depths less than 20 feet. The majority of water in these lakes and streams comes from snowmelt runoff. A changing climate is expected to alter precipitation and snowmelt patterns, such as the length and timing of ice-free periods, which greatly impacts stream and lake hydrology.

Monitoring Objectives

Condition and Trends in Streams

  • What are long term trends in the quantity and seasonal patterns of stream discharge?
  • What is the status of and what are the trends in stream water chemistry?
  • What is the status of and what are the trends in stream macroinvertebrate assemblages in streams?

Condition and Trends in Lakes

  • In subalpine lakes, are water levels or is the lake ice-free season changing over time?
  • What is the status of and what are the trends in lake water chemisty?

Reports & Publications

Monitoring protocols describe why and how we collect, manage, analyze, and report monitoring data about the Network's Vital Signs. Each protocol consists of a narrative and an associated set of standard operating procedures (SOPs).
Monitoring Reports summarize data and findings from our Vital Signs monitoring activities.

Monitoring Protocol & Procedures

Source: Data Store Collection 4280. To search for additional information, visit the Data Store.

Monitoring Reports

Source: Data Store Collection 4276. To search for additional information, visit the Data Store.

Last updated: August 28, 2018