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Reconnaissance of geology and water resources along the north flank of the Sweet Grass Hills, north-central Montana

Water-Resources Investigations Report 93-4026

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Abstract

Mississippian through Holocene rocks crop out in the area. Emplaced Tertiary igneous rocks have caused structural deformation. Aquifers are Holocene alluvium, Quaternary interstratified sand and gravel, and Upper Cretaceous Judith River Formation and Virgelle Sandstone Member of Eagle Sandstone. Recharge to each aquifer is through combinations of infiltration of precipitation, streamflow, irrigation return flow, stored surface water, and subsurface inflow. Discharge is through combinations of seepage to streams, withdrawals from wells, flow of springs and seeps, evapotranspiration, and subsurface outflow. Water in alluvium flows sub- parallel to stream channels. One water sample had a dissolved-solids concentration of 439 milligrams per liter. Water in the interstratified sand and gravel generally moves northward. Transmissivity was estimated at 900 feet squared per day. Dissolved- solids concentration ranged from 154 to 1,600 milligrams per liter. Water quality is least feasible for irrigation, marginal for domestic use, and generally suitable for livestock. Water in the Judith River Formation probably flows northeast and southeast. One water sample had a dissolved-solids concentration of 855 milligrams per liter. Water in the Virgelle Sandstone Member generally flows north. Transmissivity ranges from 200 to 3,700 feet squared per day. Dissolved-solids concentration ranged from 213 to 1,360 milligrams per liter. Water quality near outcrops is mostly adequate for domestic and livestock use and marginal for irrigation, but deteriorates downgradient. Unknown perennial yields and water quality could limit development of this resource. Miners Coulee, Breed Creek, and Bear Gulch flow intermittently. Dissolved-solids concentration ranged from 241 to 774 milligrams per liter.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Reconnaissance of geology and water resources along the north flank of the Sweet Grass Hills, north-central Montana
Series title:
Water-Resources Investigations Report
Series number:
93-4026
Edition:
-
Year Published:
1993
Language:
ENGLISH
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey ; Books and Open-File Reports Section [distributor],
Description:
v, 68 p. :ill., maps ;28 cm.