This report summarizes results of a water-resources study for White Pine County, Nevada, and adjacent areas in east-central Nevada and western Utah. The Basin and Range carbonate-rock aquifer system (BARCAS) study was initiated in December 2004 through Federal legislation (Section 301(e) of the Lincoln County Conservation, Recreation, and Development Act of 2004; PL108-424) directing the Secretary of the Interior to complete a water-resources study through the U.S. Geological Survey, Desert Research Institute, and State of Utah. The study was designed as a regional water-resource assessment, with particular emphasis on summarizing the hydrogeologic framework and hydrologic processes that influence ground-water resources.
The study area includes 13 hydrographic areas that cover most of White Pine County; in this report however, results for the northern and central parts of Little Smoky Valley were combined and presented as one hydrographic area. Hydrographic areas are the basic geographic units used by the State of Nevada and Utah and local agencies for water-resource planning and management, and are commonly defined on the basis of surface-water drainage areas. Hydrographic areas were further divided into subbasins that are separated by areas where bedrock is at or near the land surface. Subbasins are the subdivisions used in this study for estimating recharge, discharge, and water budget. Hydrographic areas are the subdivision used for reporting summed and tabulated subbasin estimates.