The CIRMOUNT Hydrologic Observatories Work Group (HOG) provides a forum and community for discussion and coordination of actions in support of new hydrologic infrastructure, focusing mainly on measurements and data, in western North American mountains. Specifically, and initially, HOG is working within the context of the ongoing NSF initiative from the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science (CUAHSI) to develop two hydrologic observatories (HO) as testbeds for long-term measurements and hydrologic characterization. Recognizing that the CUAHSI observatory program offers a uniquely important opportunity for advancing hydrologic observations and hydrologic science in western mountains, CIRMOUNT's HOG will help to integrate the five local design teams that have expressed an interest for developing HOs in western settings. The HOG recognizes that independent of any CUAHSI initiative, there will still be a need to address hydrologic research infrastructure and monitoring needs for the western mountain environments as a community. The HOG therefore will attempt to motivate continuations of the discussions begun by the local teams, even after the immediate CUAHSI opportunity is past.

Goals of CIRMOUNT's Hydrologic Observatories Work Group:

  1. Make the case to funding agencies--most immediately NSF through CUAHSI--that establishment of modern hydrologic observatories in western mountain settings is imperative to meet growing scientific and societal needs.
  2. Promote the concept that the western-mountain HO teams should continue their discussions and planning to leverage opportunities for a truly regional hydrologic measurement and research strategy for the western-mountain basins.
  3. Strive to initiate discussions and intercomparisons of hydrologic monitoring and observation strategies and technologies across the western mountain region.