This report summarizes and discusses current methods of collecting and analyzing the data required for a study of the basic hydrology of arid regions. The fundamental principles behind these methods are no different than those that apply to studies of humid regions, but in arid regions the infrequent occurrence of precipitation, the great variability of the many hydrologic elements, and the inaccessibility of most basins usually make it economically infeasible to use conventional levels of instrumentation. Because of these economic considerations hydrologic studies in arid regions have been commonly of the reconnaissance type; the more costly detailed studies are generally restricted to experimental basins and to those basins that now have major economic significance. A thorough search of the literature and personal communication with workers in the field of arid-land hydrology provided the basis for this summary of methods used in both reconnaissance and detailed hydrologic studies. The conclusions reached from a consideration of previously reported methods are interspersed in this report where appropriate.
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A summary of methods for the collection and analysis of basic hydrologic data for arid regions