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Rick Dinicola,
Associate Director, WA Water Science Center,
934 Broadway,
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Tacoma, WA 98402

(dinicola@usgs.gov)
(253) 552-1603
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Quileute Reservation Water Resources

Project Summaries

  
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WA188 - Water resources of the Quileute Indian Reservation and Quillayute River Basin - Completed FY1983

Problem - The Quileute Indian Tribe is economically dependent on its fisheries resource. The fisheries resource, in turn, is dependent on the flow and water quality of the Quillayute River and its tributaries. At present, the Tribe has no documentation of the natural flow characteristics or quality distribution of the river system, and thus no data base upon which they can rely to defend the river system against deleterious development. Their main concerns are sediment (related to logging and forest practices), flow distribution (effects of forest practices on runoff distribution), and water quality (related to near-stream development and the effects of a large boat basin in the lower estuary.

Objectives -

Phase I

  1. Document the flow distribution in the river system;
  2. Estimate the sediment yields and time distribution;
  3. Establish water-quality distribution in the tributaries and evaluate the possible effects of nearshore development; and
  4. Determine water-quality distribution in the fresh-water portion of the estuary, especially in the vicinity of the boat basin.

Phase II

  1. Evaluate the streamflow and sediment yield characteristics of all tributaries and determine the causes of difference between tributaries; and
  2. Design a surface-water flow and quality monitoring network to indicate any significant changes in quality or flow distribution which may affect the fisheries resource.

Approach -

Phase I

Collect sediment at all gaging stations in the system to develop sediment rating curves to be used in developing sediment-yield data on all tributaries. Mass measurements of QW of the fresh-water portion of the lower estuary will be made to evaluate any quality impact by the boat basin.

Phase II

If differences in flow characteristics or sediment yield of the major tribes are not explainable by differences in the natural river basin characteristics, an attempt will be made to relate land use and/or forest practices to the differences. This phase could involve additional streamflow measurements and sediment sampling to determine the origin of the differences. Based on the results of water quality and quantity studies in Phase I, a monitoring network will be designed to provide indication of changes or trends in water quality and quantity.

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