In September 2010, the Fourmile Canyon fire burned about 23 percent of the Fourmile Creek watershed in Boulder County, Colo. Water-quality sampling of Fourmile Creek began within a month after the wildfire to assess its effects on surface-water chemistry. Water samples were collected from five sites along Fourmile Creek (above, within, and below the burned area) monthly during base flow, twice weekly during snowmelt runoff, and at higher frequencies during storm events. Stream discharge was also monitored. Water-quality samples were collected less frequently from an additional 6 sites on Fourmile Creek, from 11 tributaries or other inputs, and from 3 sites along Boulder Creek. The pH, electrical conductivity, temperature, specific ultraviolet absorbance, total suspended solids, and concentrations (dissolved and total) of major cations (calcium, magnesium, sodium, and potassium), anions (chloride, sulfate, alkalinity, fluoride, and bromide), nutrients (nitrate, ammonium, and phosphorus), trace metals (aluminum, arsenic, boron, barium, beryllium, cadmium, cobalt, chromium, copper, iron, mercury, lithium, manganese, molybdenum, nickel, lead, rubidium, antimony, selenium, strontium, vanadium, and zinc), and dissolved organic carbon are here reported for 436 samples collected during 2010 and 2011.
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USGS Numbered Series
Water chemistry of surface waters affected by the Fourmile Canyon wildfire, Colorado, 2010-2011