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Shallow subsurface storm flow in a forested headwater catchment: Observations and modeling using a modified TOPMODEL

Water Resources Research

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Abstract

Transient, perched water tables in the shallow subsurface are observed at the South Fork Brokenback Run catchment in Shenandoah National Park, Virginia. Crest piezometers installed along a hillslope transect show that the development of saturated conditions in the upper 1.5 m of the subsurface is controlled by total precipitation and antecedent conditions, not precipitation intensity, although soil heterogeneities strongly influence local response. The macroporous subsurface storm flow zone provides a hydrological pathway for rapid runoff generation apart from the underlying groundwater zone, a conceptualization supported by the two-storage system exhibited by hydrograph recession analysis. A modified version of TOPMODEL is used to simulate the observed catchment dynamics. In this model, generalized topographic index theory is applied to the subsurface storm flow zone to account for logarithmic storm flow recessions, indicative of linearly decreasing transmissivity with depth. Vertical drainage to the groundwater zone is required, and both subsurface reservoirs are considered to contribute to surface saturation.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Shallow subsurface storm flow in a forested headwater catchment: Observations and modeling using a modified TOPMODEL
Series title:
Water Resources Research
Volume
36
Issue:
9
Year Published:
2000
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Water Resources Research
First page:
2575
Last page:
2586
Number of Pages:
12