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Hydrogeology of sand-plain aquifers in Carlton, Kanabec, and Pine counties, east central Minnesota

Water-Resources Investigations Report 85-4334

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Abstract

Sand-plain aquifers in parts of Carlton, Kanabec, and Pine Counties in east-central Minnesota constitute a major aquifer system. They consist predominantly of fine to medium outwash sand with a combined areal extent of nearly 500 sq mi. Saturated thickness in localized areas is as much as 90 ft. Depth to water generally is < 20 ft. Transmissivities range from about 100 to 25,000 sq ft/day. Yields to properly constructed wells locally may exceed 2,000 gal/min. A reconnaissance of sandstone units underlying the outwash indicates that transmissivities of the sandstone aquifers range from 1,850 to 2,200 sq ft/day, and specific capacities range from 9 to 12 gal/min/ft of drawdown. Locally, wells may be capable of supplying several hundred gal/min. Regionally, the sand-plain and sandstone aquifers are poorly connected hydraulically at all locations tested except in a small localized area near Quamba in Kanabec County. Groundwater in the sand-plain aquifers can be classified chemically, based on predominant ions, as a calcium bicarbonate type that is moderately hard. Concentrations of dissolved solids range from 30 to 610 mg/L. Except for locally high concentrations of iron and manganese, the quality of water is within State drinking water standards and is suitable for most uses. There are no major differences between the quality of water in the sand-plain and sandstone aquifers. Groundwater flow , aquifer response, aquifer development, and drought conditions were simulated for sand-plain aquifers areally extensive enough to be hydrologically significant. Simulation of expanded groundwater development and drought in northern Pine County indicates that regional groundwater levels may be lowered as much as 12 ft and groundwater discharge to streams may be reduced as much as 42%. Simulation of expanded development and drought in southern Pine County indicates that regional groundwater levels may be lowered as much as 25 ft and groundwater discharge to streams may be reduced as much as 65%. The simulations also indicate that each area, especially the northern Pine County area, will support substantial additional development without dewatering the aquifer or reducing streamflow significantly. (Author 's abstract)

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Hydrogeology of sand-plain aquifers in Carlton, Kanabec, and Pine counties, east central Minnesota
Series title:
Water-Resources Investigations Report
Series number:
85-4334
Edition:
-
Year Published:
1986
Language:
ENGLISH
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey,
Description:
vi, 66 p. :ill., maps ;28 cm.