Hydrologic and hydraulic analyses of Great Meadow wetland, Acadia National Park, Maine

Scientific Investigations Report 2016-5159
Prepared in cooperation with the National Park Service



The U.S. Geological Survey completed hydrologic and hydraulic analyses of Cromwell Brook and the Sieur de Monts tributary in Acadia National Park, Maine, to better understand causes of flooding in complex hydrologic and hydraulic environments, like those in the Great Meadow wetland and Sieur de Monts Spring area. Regional regression equations were used to compute peak flows with from 2 to 100-year recurrence intervals at seven locations. Light detection and ranging data were adjusted for bias caused by dense vegetation in the Great Meadow wetland; and then combined with local ground surveys used to define the underwater topography and hydraulic structures in the study area. Hydraulic modeling was used to evaluate flood response in the study area to a variety of hydrologic and hydraulic scenarios.

Hydraulic modeling indicates that enlarging the culvert at Park Loop Road could help mitigate flooding near the Sieur de Monts Nature Center that is caused by streamflows with large recurrence intervals; however, hydraulic modeling also indicates that the Park Loop Road culvert does not aggravate flooding near the Nature Center caused by the more frequent high intensity rainstorms. That flooding is likely associated with overland flow resulting from (1) quick runoff from the steep Dorr Mountain hitting the lower gradient Great Meadow wetland area and (2) poor drainage aggravated by beaver dams holding water in the wetland.

Rapid geomorphic assessment data collected in June 2015 and again in April 2016 indicate that Cromwell Brook has evidence of aggradation, degradation, and channel widening throughout the drainage basin. Two of five reference cross sections developed for this report also indicate channel aggradation.

Suggested Citation

Lombard, P.J., 2017, Hydrologic and hydraulic analyses of Great Meadow wetland, Acadia National Park, Maine: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2016–5159, 39 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20165159.

ISSN: 2328-0328 (online)

Study Area

Table of Contents

  • Abstract
  • Introduction
  • Data Collection
  • Hydrology
  • Hydraulic Model
  • Flood-Inundation Mapping
  • Modeled Flooding
  • Culvert Design Considerations
  • Additional Work
  • Summary
  • References Cited
Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Hydrologic and hydraulic analyses of Great Meadow wetland, Acadia National Park, Maine
Series title Scientific Investigations Report
Series number 2016-5159
DOI 10.3133/sir20165159
Year Published 2017
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) Maine Water Science Center
Description viii, 39 p.
Country United States
State Maine
Other Geospatial Acadia National Park, Mount Desert Island
Online Only (Y/N) Y
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional publication details