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Hydrology of the Ferron sandstone aquifer and effects of proposed surface-coal mining in Castle Valley, Utah, with sections on stratigraphy and leaching of overburden

Water Supply Paper 2195

Prepared in cooperation with the United States Bureau of Land Management
By:
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Abstract

Coal in the Ferron Sandstone Member of the Mancos Shale of Cretaceous age has traditionally been mined by underground techniques in the Emery Coal Field in the southern end of Castle Valley in east-central Utah. However, approximately 99 million tons are recoverable by surface mining. Ground water in the Ferron is the sole source of supply for the town of Emery, but the aquifer is essentially untapped outside the Emery area.

The Ferron Sandstone Member crops out along the eastern edge of Castle Valley and generally dips 2 ? to 10 ? to the northwest. Sandstones in the Ferron are enclosed between relatively impermeable shale in the Tununk and Blue Gate Members of the Mancos Shale. Along the outcrop, the Ferron ranges in thickness from about 80 feet in the northern part of Castle Valley to 850 feet in the southern part. The Ferron also generally thickens in the subsurface downdip from the outcrop. Records from wells and test holes indicate that the full thickness of the Ferron is saturated with water in most areas downdip from the outcrop area.

Tests in the Emery area indicate that transmissivity of the Ferron sandstone aquifer ranges from about 200 to 700 feet squared per day where the Ferron is fully saturated. Aquifer transmissivity is greatest near the Paradise Valley-Joes Valley fault system where permeability has been increased by fracturing. Storage coefficient ranges from about 10 .6 to 10 -3 where the Ferron sandstone aquifer is confined and probably averages 5 x 10-2 where it is unconfined.

Additional publication details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Hydrology of the Ferron sandstone aquifer and effects of proposed surface-coal mining in Castle Valley, Utah, with sections on stratigraphy and leaching of overburden
Series title:
Water Supply Paper
Series number:
2195
Year Published:
1983
Language:
English
Publisher:
U.S. Government Printing Office
Publisher location:
Washington, D.C.
Contributing office(s):
Utah Water Science Center
Description:
Report: vi, 40 p.; 3 Plates: 17.00 in. x 27.20 in. each
Country:
United States
State:
Utah
Other Geospatial:
Castle Valley