Measuring the Resurgence at Government Spring

April 2015 Government Spring Video (66 MB zip file)

John and Dorothy at the fence style, taking the logger sensor to the spring, hidden in the willows.
 
*Click on the picture to view a QTVR (4888) showing the highway and the old staging station.
Steve installing the new Gov. Spring scale on the 2 x 4 which is coated with a blue paint to minimize water absorption.
 
The water gauge at the old gauging station is marked in 10ths of feet. *Click on the picture to view a QTVR (4870) taken from the stream to the right.
Side view of the new gauging station: scale is on the 2 x 4 next to the bridge, weir to the right.
 
The weir is constructed from water-proofed plywood, held in place by two steel posts plus other wood supports.
A view at low water looking towards the spring. Note the water plants that tend to clog the "V" notch of the weir. Also note the clarity of the water.
 
A view towards the actual spring from slightly downstream of the weir shows the long and narrow pool surrounded by willow trees.
Pete attaches the new sensor for the data logger on the "far side" of the original scale post.
 
Karen, John and Dorothy assist in installation of data logger in March, 2010. *Click on the picture to view a QTVR (4877) taken from just above the gauging station.
The top of the sensor is where the LASCAR data logger is attached. A plastic bag and a metal cover is used for environmental protection.
 
The sensor was positioned so that the main lower band plus the next copper band was just at the low flow water level of 1 3/16 inch on the scale.
The Gov. Spring scale is marked in 1/16th inch increments. The water plants must be cleared for a clear reading.
 
The extra copper wire level sensor shown here to the right of the stainless band will check the effect of water and corrosion.
The actual data logger unit unplugs from the USB socket that connects to the leads. It was retired after being flooded by the Rio Bonito.
 
The sensor, modified from the previous Snowy River installation, has bands to span an 8 inch range.
At 8:00 pm on July 9, 2012, the Rio Bonito experienced a flash flood at the HQ building, raising the water level by 4-5 feet. The muddy ash turned the Rio black.
Government Spring is just off the left side of this picture. The riparian area just to the N of Hwy 380 caught much of the mud "slurry" from the flood.
The plywood weir was covered by a foot of the black mud from the Rio flood, completely stopping the Government Spring flow.
The top of the 2x8 used as a bridge over the spring pool was buried under an inch or more of mud. The scale now extends under the mud.
On New Year's eve, Lee and Sylvie took this picture of the spring area showing some of the work in progress to install a new weir.
"If it were bigger, you could ice skate on it" reported Lee.
* Download QuickTime HERE
   
The graph on the right is a record of the flow rate from a high flow in September, 2008 to low flow in April, 2012. The peaks correlate with flows at Turtle Junction in Snowy River.
Shortly after the Turtle Junction flow started in 2010 (#1), the data logger was removed to download data, then it was replaced at a slightly shallower location. Shortly after that point there was a rain event (#2). In the late July to early August time period heavy surface rain caused a 2nd water event (#3). Then in the middle of December 2010, the water flow stopped shortly after a 3rd water event (#4) that lasted only a day or so. Over about a week the depth seemed to dip about 6 cm, then rise back to the previous flow level before tapering off back to the “no flow” condition.

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